Hidden behind long straggly hair and a beard, and wearing old and dishevelled clothes Nicolas Cage is barely recognisable as the reclusive Robin Feld who lives with his much loved truffle-snuffling pig in a shack in the Oregon forest.
He looks as if he needs a good bath, cooks delicious meals and can’t bring himself to listen to a cassette tape from a woman who is apparently the cause of his grief and isolation.
He gets by with enough money from selling truffles to Amir (Alex Wolff), who on-sells them to top restaurants. He is an ambitious, wealth-chasing young man who wears an ill-fitting suit and drives an expensive yellow sports car while listening to classical music and educational topics in an effort to to improve his social status.
At the dead of night Rob is attacked by two men and left unconscious – and the shrieking pig is abducted. Desperate to find his income-earing pet, he convinces a reluctant Amir to help in a search which takes them into the fine-dining underworld of Portland. He is forced to re-enter the world he left – and confront his past.
Directed and co-written with Vanessa Block in his first feature film, Michael Samoski has made a showcase for Nicolas Cage’s talents in a film which at times has an unfocused storyline. The cinema-photography, shot largely in golden brown autumnal light, is by Patrick Scola.
The wonderfully restrained performance of Nicolas Cage (who oddly never wipes the blood off his face) anchors the movie which moves slowly and strangely, making you wonder what is coming next. The casting, music and photography is fine – and the pig is great!
Showing at Luna Leederville from 16 September.
Watch the trailer…