“Viver Mal is a mirror to Mal Viver. In a mirror, the reflected image is inverted and the image in this film shows what could only be imagined in the other: the hotel guests who, in the first film, are mere shadows and fleeting figures, appearing in fragments, are now the protagonists.
And the members of the family who run the hotel, the protagonists in the other film, are now shadows and fleeting figures, appearing in fragments, disturbing the narratives of the guests’ stories in this one.
The life and the dramas of the hotel-running family are glimpsed in upsetting fragments, which fuel the viewer’s imagination while adding dramatic dimension to the characters of the guests, which shift from being isolated to living in a world with other people, where they can be observed. Viver Mal shows another point of view over the same time and the same space; one point of view showing the dramas that the other only allows fragmented glimpses of.”
If anyone ever worked obsessively on egotism, as a cause for living badly with oneself and with others, that someone was August Strindberg. Hence the natural choice of seeking inspiration for the hotel guests’ stories on Strindberg plays which are paradigmatic examples of different forms of egotism. Three plays were selected: Playing with Fire, about a husband who can’t commit in his relationship to his wife, but who, when he senses he might lose her, realizes he loves her, after all; The Pelican, about an overbearing and selfish mother who goes as far as to encourage her daughter’s marriage so as to enable her own love affair with her daughter’s husband; and Motherlove, about another mother who lives through her daughter in such a way that it prevents her child from living a great love. The plays were only used as inspiration and were not directly adapted. Rather, they were used freely as a motif for a totally reformulated rewriting, placed within our time.