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Tale of Tales

Inspired by the rich stories of Neapolitan poet Giambattista Basile, Matteo Garrone’s (Gomorrah, Reality) first English-language feature is a gory, interweaving triptych of the darkest and most bizarre of fairy tales.

Once upon a time, three neighboring kingdoms were ruled by selfishness and desire. In the first realm, a king (John C. Reilly) and queen (Salma Hayek) will stop at nothing to conceive, following the advice of an eerie seer. The ruler (Toby Jones) of the kingdom next door is too preoccupied with his giant pet flea to realize he’s married off his beloved daughter to a brutal monster. In the last realm, an oversexed king (Vincent Cassel) mistakes the beautiful voice of an old spinster for true love. Garrone deftly cuts between the three stories, delving into the realm of sorcerers, fairies, monsters, ogres, acrobats, and courtesans. Set against gorgeous Baroque architecture, this imaginative and eccentric fantasy is equal parts funny and unnerving, a grotesque examination of the human psyche, ladled with a heavy dose of magic.

DIRECTOR: Matteo Garrone
CAST: Salma Hayek, Vincent Cassel, Toby Jones, John C. Reilly
COUNTRY: Italy, France, UK
YEAR: 2015
LENGTH: 125 min
Friday, October 23

2:10pm EDT

Saturday, October 31

12:05pm EDT