Sunday, August 18, 2013

1949 - LES SANG DES BETES or BLOOD OF THE BEASTS, a short documentary about a slaughterhouse

Franju's documentary about a couple of slaughterhouses in the suburbs of Paris is oddly intense and poetic.  Franju doesn't look away from the animal killings or the processing of the carcass by the workers in these factories.  The film acknowledges that if the human race wants to eat meat this is the manner in which we will get it, violent, gruesome and very messy.

Sheep are tipped over and placed on a table while workers walk along and slit their throats open one at a time.  The reflexive nerves of their bodies shake while the workers hold these creatures down to finish the job.  Calves get their heads cut off so as not to contaminate the meat with blood for veal. Horses at a rendering plant are stunned to death prior to be skinned and eviscerated.  I might have to rethink this meat eating thing.

I suppose Blood of the Beast could be making some allusions to The Holocaust or the World Wars with their massive destruction of human life, but what I came away with was the almost technical precision that the human race has achieved in killing any living creature.

20 minutes

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