We Are What We Are, film review: Cannibal-themed horror film turns usual conventions on their head

(18) Jim Mickie, 105 mins Starring: Bill Sage, Ambyr Childers, Kelly McGillis

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The Independent Culture

This is a cannibal-themed horror film that plays like a tasteful US indie arthouse drama in the Winter's Bone mould. Based on a Mexican movie, it turns usual horror conventions on their head.

The main twist here is that the flesh-eaters are sympathetic characters who are provided with a proper backstory and an explanation for their behaviour.

The cannibalism is rooted in settler rituals dating back to the 18th century. Grieving patriarch Frank (Bill Sage), getting over the mysterious death of his wife, insists that his teenage daughters carry on the family traditions.

Some of the film is gruesome in the extreme but there is always lyricism and pathos alongside the bloodletting.