This review was originally published as part of my coverage of Fantasia 2016
Young mermaids become hits in a Warsaw nightclub in The Lure. Golden (Michalina Olszanska) and Silver (Marta Mazurek) are two mermaid sisters, who arise from the ocean in 1980s Warsaw. Thanks to their hypnotic siren singing powers, the two mermaids become the spotlight attraction of a band performing at a burlesque nightclub, which begins to call themselves “The Lure.” While the sisters initially plan on being on shore temporary, Silver begins to fall for the band’s bassist Mietek (Jakub Gierszal), which leads to some major complications.
The feature film debut of Polish director Agnieszka Smoczynska, The Lure is a film that defies genre classification. Simultaneously being a horror film, musical, and coming-of-age drama, The Lure is definitely a very unique film. Borrowing some familiar plot elements from Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Mermaid, one of the main dramatic arcs of the film involves blonde-haired mermaid Silver falling in love and desiring to become human. However, the problem is that if her love is not reciprocated, Silver is in danger of turning into nothing but sea foam.
I can say that without a doubt that I highly enjoyed The Lure, which is able to seamlessly move between catchy musical numbers and heart-eating violence and gore. At first, it may seem like the two sisters are polar opposites, with Golden being apparently the more wicked of the two. However, it quickly turns out that she is more concerned with her sister’s well being, since Golden knows what will happen if Mietek doesn’t return Silver’s feelings for him. Overall, The Lure is one very unique film about singing mermaids, who eat men’s hearts.