Movie Review: “Wetlands” Takes Artistic Freedom To An All-time Low


Review by James McDonald

The adventures of an eccentric girl who has strange attitudes towards hygiene and sexuality longs for the reunion of her divorced parents.

When the producers of “Wetlands” got together and decided that they were going to make a movie, their first thought was probably how they could succeed in upping the ante with as much distasteful and objectionable material they could imagine in order to gross people out and make the movie almost unwatchable. Last time I checked, the whole point in making a movie was so that people would actually watch it and if it was any good, spread the word. You notice I said ‘almost unwatchable’ because aside from all the visual and implied repugnance throughout the movie, there is some hint of an actual story that sadly, never really goes anywhere. We are introduced to Helen (Carla Juri), a young girl who is fascinated with bodily hygiene. Or to be more precise, a lack thereof.

From an early age, she was taught by her mother that a woman should always bathe and keep herself fresh, especially between her legs, so that she wouldn’t acquire any infections. Apparently, she told Helen a lot of things that weren’t true so the older Helen becomes, the more she rebels and becomes what she refers to as a “living pussy-hygiene experiment.” When she is out and needs to use a public restroom, instead of wiping the seat or hovering above it, like many women do, she sits down on the rim and using her vagina, she wipes the entire seat clean, just to see what will happen. In voiceover, she claims that she has never even had a yeast infection so her rebellion against personal hygiene becomes stronger and more determined, including not showering for weeks at a time.

One night while shaving, she decides to experiment further and uses the razor on her anus and as a result, winds up in the hospital. Because of her defiance and overall stupidity, she incurs an anal fissure, a large tear in the skin of the anal opening and must immediately undergo an operation. While she is sedated, we see much of her life in flashback and right about this point in the movie, it became perfectly clear to me that the producers never really had an actual story to tell and if they did, it got lost in all the various and unnecessary subplots that surface. She and her best friend Corinna (Marlen Kruse) are so close, that when it’s time for their period, they extract their used tampons and swap them out, inserting each one inside of themselves.

The movie is full of extreme and bizarre fetishes that I’m sure are authentic and while the producers implant them into the movie, obviously trying very hard to be daringly innovative, the film simply crumbles because of a lack of any constructive coherency and instead, we’re subjected to a montage of sporadic infatuations, each more disgusting that the last, instead of an actual, legitimate and consistent storyline. After all, who wants to watch a young girl who after her operation, proceeds to take out of a plastic bag, the portion that was cut out of her anus and then smear it all over herself? You have been warned.

In select theaters now including the Angelika Film Center in Dallas

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James McDonald
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One Response
  1. February 9, 2015

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