Pay your way out of death in the trailer for Brandon Cronenberg’s Infinity Pool

Alexander Skarsgård and Mia Goth star in the thriller set at a resort hiding an underside of depravity.


Charles Bramesco


With yesterday’s announcement of the Sundance Film Festival program comes the annual scrum for attention, as dozens of studios and sales agents race to drum up buzz for their titles prior to everyone’s arrival in Park City. One such on-the-radar selection is Infinity Pool, the new psycho-thriller from Brandon Cronenberg, which has already beaten the rush by rolling out its first trailer before the rest of the Sundance deluge.

The writer and director of the fiendish Possessor has readied another work of skin-crawling body horror, specifically rooted in the existential terror and titillation of finding one’s consciousness inhabiting an unfamiliar form. And it arrives at a surprisingly on-trend moment, set at a picturesque resort masking the moral grotesquerie of the wealthy, putting a darker spin on the same themes as Palme d’Or winner Triangle of Sadness or TV’s The White Lotus.

Alexander Skarsgård stars as James, a struggling writer come to bask in some adoration with a visit to his fan club, led by the enigmatic Gabi (Mia Goth, on a roll these days). He and wife Em (Cleopatra Coleman) are enjoying the resort and respect until one out-of-control night results in an accidental death that James, due to some rather draconian legal codes, must pay for with his own life — unless, that is, he’s willing to spend the money to have himself cloned and the double executed in his place.

As he takes this ominous deal, a seamy underbelly of indulgence and degeneracy is revealed beneath the placid surfaces of the resort, as violence and sex commingle in frightful new forms of private entertainment. Cronenberg has proven himself a distinctive enough filmmaker that he should be free from constant comparisons to his father David, but it’s hard not to see the connection to the recent Crimes of the Future, in which spectators also gathered to take in frightful spectacles of flesh and blood.

The film has been slated for a world premiere in Sundance’s Midnight section, which will hopefully give way to a theatrical run shocking some perverted life into the American spring movie calendar. (The Canadian debut has already been set for 27 January, though a UK distributor has yet to purchase the rights.) But with international press flooding Utah for the first look soon enough, we’ll see what nasty tricks Cronenberg has up his sleeve — though we’ll have to wait for the first round of interviews to find out what material had to be excised to get the film down from an NC-17 to an R.

Published 8 Dec 2022

Tags: Alexander Skarsgård Brandon Cronenberg Mia Goth

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