SUMMARY: Monsieur Kabal and his wife stage a concert but it quickly descends into a bloodbath.
WHY IT’S HERE: Walerian Borowczyk’s ‘Le Concert de M. et Mme. Kabal’ is a grotesque, funny and somewhat baffling short which preceded Borowczyk’s first animated feature with the same characters, the 80 minute ‘Theatre de M. et Mme. Kabal’. At six minutes in length, ‘Le Concert de M. et Mme. Kabal’ is a more palatable prospect, although ‘palatable’ may not be a term you regularly see associated with these characters. Borowczyk betrays prominent influences of the Theatre of the Absurd here, particularly Alfred Jarry’s scabrous ‘Ubu Roi’. The character of Mme. Kabal is particularly memorable; a self-obsessed, towering and incongruously busty grotesque who takes offence at her husband’s indifference to her performance to the extent that she dismembers him and throws him into her piano, to the accompaniment of the funeral march. If this grotesque comedy strikes you as funny (and I must admit, in this case, it really does for me) then you’ll probably enjoy this curious little short. Whether it prompts you to seek out the 80 minute sequel is another story!