When I’m in the checkout line at the supermarket, and I see all of the celebrity magazines, I’m confused. People who would buy those magazines and tabloids don’t seem to realize that celebrities are strangers. If Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have a baby, then I don’t see how that impacts anyone’s lives but their own. But celebrities are viewed as a commodity, and Brandon Cronenberg‘s clever film Antiviral carries out this extension of human commodity into a perverse economy where there’s just enough shreds of truth to make us wonder if his world could really happen if the science was possible. However, despite the fascinating ideas at the forefront, the story and characters almost feel perfunctory, and any attempts to make the movie feel like a thriller come off as heavy-handed. Cronenberg has crafted a film that is sick, sad, smart, and serviceable.
An unnerving trailer for Brandon Cronenberg‘s Antiviral has gone online. The film stars Caleb Landry Jones (X-Men: First Class) as a worker at a specialized clinic where patients pay to be infected with diseases harvested from celebrities as a way to feel closer to their idols. Judging by the trailer, Brandon Cronenberg (son of David Cronenberg) seems to share his father’s understanding that being gory isn’t enough if you want to creep people out. You have to find the right way to destroy the human body if you want to disturb the audience. Antiviral looks like it’s going to disturb the hell out of its audience.
Hit the jump to check out the trailer along with the poster, a clip, and a viral promo (no pun intended). Antiviral will play at the Toronto International Film Festival next month, and I plan to check it out provided I haven’t eaten beforehand.