Neon Bull (Boi neon) 4.0 stars

Neon Bull (Boi neon) movie poster

Lesson #1: there’s no such thing as a bad story, just bad storytellers. How else does one explain the hypnotic sensation that awaits in this surrealist tale of an ordinary tail-sanding bull handler? Iremar (Juliano Cazarré) works behind the scenes on the rodeo circuit. He’s a traveling man, at heart a frustrated fashion designer who daydreams by drawing panties on naked pinups. On the great totem pole of life, Iremar finds himself positioned somewhere between the dumb animals he shares his sleeping quarters with and the even dumber humans whose macho task it is to use the bull’s tail as a lanyard to bring it down. With all the grace and symmetry of a peacock fanning its tail, director Gabriel Mascaro reveals his hand in quixotic blasts of expressionistic color, graphic sensuality, and a few things we’ve never before seen on film, notably a plot to siphon premium horse semen that goes terribly wrong and a climactic sex scene that won’t soon fade from mind. In Portuguese with English subtitles. 2015.

Scott Marks

This movie is not currently in theaters.

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