In my long history of loving cinema, there have only ever been two films that have literally intimidated me. These are movies that I’d heard about, and wasn’t sure I could handle the content. They are Cannibal Holocaust, and A Serbian Film. Cannibal, I literally waited years to actually see, in the case of Serb my curiosity got the better of me much faster. The thing is, there was a time when certain things just made me sick to witness, whether it was being faked in a movie or not, and rape was atop that list. As the years have gone by, as with all of us, I’ve become more and more desensitized to just about everything, rape included, and not much bothers me anymore. All that being said, A Serbian Film still gets to me, every time I watch it, I say it will be for the last time. Truth be told, as I sat down to watch it again for the purposes of this write-up, it was only the third time I’d seen it. I have no plans to revisit it any time soon, or in the future for that matter.
When Serb opens, we are introduced to Milos, the Filthy Stud. Milos is a retired porn star attempting to lead a normal family life, and is stuck in the financial woes of doing so that most of us are all too familiar with. When an ex co-worker from his film days named Layla, who is aware of his money problems, approaches him with an offer, Milos has a decision to make. She informs him that there’s a new big time film maker working in Serbia, interested only in making “artistic pornography” and he’s paying top dollar. Enough money that neither Milos, nor his wife would ever have to work again. Intrigued by the chance that he could provide for his family’s future with just one paycheck, Milos agrees to meet with the guy, a powerful man named Vukmir.
The meeting, which takes place at Vukmir’s mansion, begins with Milos being bombarded with compliments about his past performances. Vukmir is obviously highly interested in working with Milos, however Milos is still reluctant. He asks Vukmir about his work, and if there’s any he might have seen, to which Vukmir only replies that he makes art, naked art, and only for a select clientele. At the end of the meeting, Milos is left with more questions than answers, but before the conversation can go any further, a woman walks into the room with a contract, and Vukmir’s offer. Milos takes the night to think it over, and while we aren’t told the amount of money being thrown at him, it’s obviously quite a bit as the next morning, the contract is signed.
When work begins, Milos doesn’t get a script, he has absolutely no idea what he’s supposed to do next, he’s given an earpiece and on the other end of it is Vukmir, giving direction from an unknown location. It’s obvious from the very beginning, when Milos is directed to enter an Orphanage to and perform, while a young girl is shown on two television screens in front of him, that working for Vukmir isn’t exactly going to be normal. Unable to shake the general discomfort he’s feeling toward the production and the people he’s working for, Milos eventually enlists the aid of his older brother, a policeman, asking him to find out all he can on the mysterious director. This is the same brother, by the way, that’s got a weird obsession with Milos’ wife, and his family life. Milos also questions Layla about her involvement with them, and it turns out that she doesn’t exactly know a lot more than he does. It also turns out that Vukmir’s had her do things with animals on film, which of course is only ok because it’s considered “art” when he films it. On a side note, I’m completely shocked that bestiality doesn’t have it’s own wing in the Smithsonian American Art Museum. I bet all the Serbian ones have them.
From here, things beging to get darker and far more twisted for Milos. His next encounter in the orphanage has him doing some pretty brutal things to a woman, as a young girl watches, only instead of on a monitor, she’s actually in the room this time. Milos is horrified when the light comes on and he sees her, and for the first time voices his reluctance to work in this manner to Vukmir. After a brief discussion with him, Milos leaves, and is later contacted by his brother, who has some information on Vukmir. It seems he was a fairly renowned child psychologist up until a few years ago when he disappeared off the grid. He’d also always had a fascination with film, and I suppose at this point we all know basically what he’d been doing since his disappearance.
At this point, Milos has decided he’s had more than enough, and he goes to Vukmir the next morning and informs him that he’s retiring and won’t finish the film. Now, I’m not going to attempt to explain Vukmir’s reaction to the news. Truth is I couldn’t, even if I wanted. I’m either not smart enough, or I’m just not clinically insane like this fuck is. Basically he attempts to validate his work to Milos, explaining that most of us are too lazy or too scared to truly experience life, to be victimized as life intends for us to be, so he films life and people pay for it. The victim feels the most and suffers the best. It’s also at this point that the scene comes into play. If you’re familiar with this movie in any way prior to reading this, then you most likely know the scene to which I refer. I can honestly tell you it’s as hard to type as it is to watch. Vukmir shows Milos a scene from one of his other films, tells him he will show him the power of a true victim, in which a woman gives birth, and the infant is immediately taken from her and raped. Milos, clearly as disgusted as anyone in their right mind would be, leaves the room as Vukmir chants “newborn porn”.
Still with me? Yeah. Sadly, as compltely fucked up as this is, at least the rape is just implied and we aren’t exactly shown it in graphic detail. Sadly, in A Serbian Film, the worst is yet to come. Milos leaves the house, but doesn’t get far before blacking out behind the wheel. When he comes to, he awakens at home and discovers that he’s lost three days. He’s been visibly beaten, has blood all over his clothes, and he’s even pissing blood. His family is also nowhere to be found. He leaves the house, intent on finding them and discovering just what happened during those three days.
As he enters Vukmir’s mansion, Milos begins to have small flashbacks as to what he endured, and did. When he was being shown the baby rape video, Vukmir had slipped bull viagra into his drink, intent on getting his “stud” to finish his film one way or another. Apparently, bull viagara puts humans into what can best be described as a nasty case of dick roid rage. While in the house he finds one of the cameras that had been filming him and a collection of tapes. He picks them up, and heads out into the woods to watch them, knowing the answers to what he’d done for the last three days, what he’d endured for the last three days. The rest of the movie contains some of the most brutal, depraved, disgusting, and disturbing shit I’ve ever witnessed in my life. Picture a guy getting killed by having a dick thrust through his eye socket, and you’re getting there. Things with Milos brother take a completely fucked up turn, Milos himself does the unthinkable, there isn’t a happy ending for a single character in this film. Things finally culminate in an absolutely heartbreaker of an ending.
The thing that sets this movie apart from a lot of other “extreme” cinema for me is that, I feel for Milos. Even though he does some extremely heinous shit, what it all boils down to is he was doing what he thought he had to do to provide for his family. I can relate to that, although nobody’s going to be asking me to star in any porno anytime soon. And then, when he saw just how fucked up things were, he tried to do the right thing and get as far away from it as possible. Of course, things didn’t turn out well for him, but at least he tried. In the end, I guess it’s just as Vukmir said, nobody suffers like the victim, and because of that, Milos ends up being a tragic character. I mentioned Cannibal Holocaust earlier, when I watched it, I had the exact opposite response to it. That movie is completely unrealistic to me, because of the characters. At first glance, I thought I was going to be supremely fucked up after I saw what happened to the college film students, but then when their “footage” was shown, it totally took me out of the movie. They pillaged, raped, murdered, and even pointlessly killed a turtle on their way to getting theirs at the hands of a tribe of cannibals. Well, fuck em, I say. They fucking deserved what they got. It was just so unrealistic, who the hell were these kids?! In A Serbian Film though, Milos is a father who is struggling to provide from his family, and is offered an opportunity too good to pass up. That I get. Psychotic, murdering, rapist college kids? Not so much.
If you manage to make it all the way through A Serbian Film, consider yourself pretty goddamn hardcore. I do. I could sit here and tell you how I’ve hated myself for watching it every time I do so, I could tell you that I don’t want to like it, that there’s no excuse for it, that the people responsible should be locked away, and all of that may be true. But it would also be doing the film an injustice by not mentioning just how well it’s done. The camera work is superb, the acting is great, and whether you’re disgusted or not by it, there’s no denying that this film gets under your skin. It touches on emotions, be they good or bad, in a way that few films ever do. The best analogy I’ve been able to come up with for it, sadly also makes reference to one of the other most disgustingly depraved things I’ve ever witnessed, Two Girls, One Cup. There’s a reaction video on youtube of Kermit the Frog watching that sick shit, and he’s initially disgusted of course, but then he turns his head as if to see if anyone else in the room is watching and when he decides he’s alone, he starts jerking off like a madman. That’s what A Serbian Film is like for your eyes, you want to be disgusted and sickened, and you want to want to turn it off, but you just can’t. You want to see what happens next, you want to see how things play out, even though you just know it’s going to completely tear your heart out, or at the very least make you vomit. A Serbian Film is a lot of things, but the one thing it isn’t is a bad film.
Big thanks to Tromeric for once again letting me ramble on and on here in the House of Grog. It’s always an honor. Enjoy the rest of Extreme Cinema Week!
- Mitch Reaves
Mitch Reaves is a double-bacon genius burger, and just a little druuuuunk! Check out Tales From the Batcave for more of his awesome.
I’d like to talk to the younguns among us for a minute. Those who
don’t remember a time before Google. Those who have only owned VHS
tapes as antiquated curiosities. Yeah, you know who I’m talking about.
You young whippersnappers have no idea how good you have it. Back in
the dark ages when I was first seeking out horror beyond the mainstream,
aka the late 90’s, everything you can think of wasn’t at your
fingertips. There was no Blue Underground. There was no Grindhouse
Releasing. There was no Synapse, Vinegar Syndrome, Mondo Macabro, or
Unearthed Films. Hell, Anchor Bay was just getting started. A place
like Diabolik DVD would have been horror fans of the day’s wettest
dream. There sure as hell was no Pirate Bay. Most of the time the only
chance you had to see extreme domestic flicks was to hit the video
store jackpot. The only way to get uncut foreign movies was on
ridiculously expensive laserdiscs, and who the hell had a player?
we did have back then were gray-market bootleg tape dealers. Their ads
populated Fangoria’s classified section and promised the rarest,
nastiest, most hardcore horror flicks from the worldwide underground.
Averaging about twenty bucks a pop, these tapes could have been pristine
transfers off of a laserdisc or a barely visible fifth generation video
dub. That was the chance you took. I never had the money to order
many, but I used to read these catalogs like a combination of sacred
text and Sears Wishbook. I know. I’m dating myself again. These
catalogs were magical tomes full of forbidden fruit to salivate over.
The awfully written entries described the kills you didn’t see in the
version your local video store had. The hyperbolic language made these
flicks sound like pure filthy sin encased in plastic. Hell, I can quote
some of the descriptions word for word. I’ve since seen a lot of these
movies, but I still return to these lists now and then to find an
unknown gem to track down.
I dug out four of these catalogs that I
had kept, ranging from 1996-1999. For those of you who never
experienced the wonder of these founts of extreme cinema knowledge, I
present an A to Z sampling. A time capsule of a forgotten age of
extreme cinema collecting. To preserve the authentic experience, all
entries have been reprinted EXACTLY as they appeared. All grammatical,
spelling, and factual errors have been left intact because that was part
of their charm. So dive on in. I dare you to read these descriptions
and not think “Sweet Mother of Hell, I HAVE to see that!
2 Uncut print of the Joe D’Amato sequel to Anthropophagus the 1981
film “Absurb”, “Grim Reaper 2” was never shown in U.S George Eastman
returns at the brutal flesh eating killer whose body can rejuvenate dead
cells& stalked by a priest. Much better & more gore than part
1, with heads cut off, band saw lobotomy, electric screwdriver through
the heads. (VG)
Black Candles [Hot Fantasies] (SP, 1981)
UNCUT X-rated version of sex/witchcraft epic! Nude orgies, girl making
love to a goat! (FI) (21+)
Contamination (aka Alien
Contamination) – UNCUT print of this chunkblower of a film from
1980.After an abandoned vessel turn’s up at a New York harbor,some cop’s
go aboard the ship to search for passenger’s,they find the ship
deserted except for a bunch of pod like melon’s,that explode spraying
everyone in the vicinity with some kinda fluid that make’s people’s
chest’s explode. You have to see the exploding chest effect’s to believe it,absolutely amazing.And as a bonus this film also comes with the original trailer.
Boyz Can’ Fly – Some punk’s decide to take over an office building and
randomly rape and murder the occupent’s,I was very suprised to see this
motherfucker being released in 1994,at least some Direcotr’s out there
still have ball’s.Highly entertaining stuff for the whole family.
Perversions – Sickest shit in the catalog time! This shit blew my mind
and watching it was the hardest thing I ever did ! simulated sexual
torture to the extreme! This is soul shredding stuff Please Do not get
this if you think its to extreme cause it is! Seller holds no
responsibility of consequences of customers well being after purchase of
this tape! Due to the rarity of this tape Its $30.00 a copy You have
Folds of the Flesh – (IT/SP, 1972)
Phantasmagoric thriller with plot twists galore! With murder, incest,
severed heads, rape, insanity, and Nazi death camp horrors! (FI) (18+)
Pig 1thru 7 This is one nasty tape series! – They were BANNED in Japan
after thet came out because of all the copy cats out their who emulated
scenes from them !These are disgusting the 1st tape has a guy
dismembering a chick for one hour, the second one has 3 guys torturing
this poor lady for the whole tape, the 3rd tape a guy finds a mermaid in
the sewer brings her home & starts to paint her as she rots ,then
he spazes out then dismembers her !The 4th tape a little midget tries to
bring his love back from the deadly using science .Of coarse he uses the
most excruciating lab tests their disgusting. The 5th tape is about 2
lovers who kidnap a female and torture her to within an inch of her life
at the same time their doing it. The 6th tape a guy gets so bored with
his life he tries suicide and finds out he can’t die he feels if he
keeps hacken away at himself he’ll die sooner or later, he don’t The 7th
is like a game show hosted by some weird transvestite who hacks &
slashes anyone that gets near her this is one of the most excruciating
flicks out their PLEASE NO ONE UNDER 18
Experiments of SS Last Days – Uncut import print of “The Beast In Heat’
the 1971 film from Ivan Katanski. This film has been called crude &
tasteless, terminally outrageous & the most depraved of the video
nasties. A beautiful female SS officer/doctor creates a genetic mutant
human beast which she uses to torture & molest female prisoners.
Plenty of sadistic titillations gore & nudity in this shocking 7
appaling film (VG)
In A Glass Cage – the 1988
devastating-soul crushing film by Augustin Villaronya, about a crippled
NAZI doctor and a young man to take care of him, with tons of sick
scenes, child killings, sexual perversion, a boy tied down a a giant
hypo full gasoline injected directly to his heart. Realy sick. NOT FOR
ALL TASTES!! (Good)
Just Before Dawn – From the director
of such classic’s as SQUIRM and BLUE SUNSHINE,comes this charming tale
of a group of landowner’s going to the mountain’s to check out their
property when they become prey to a bunch of inbred psycho squeeling twin
hillbilly’s. This makes DELIVERANCE look like sesame street,and
directed by one of my fave’s( who never received much credit for his
Killer Snakes – X-RATED Shaw bros. film About a
guy & his snakes. He’s a perfert so he ends up using his snakes to
help him rape unsuspecting women .These little buggers climb into every
orifice they can get into!!!RATED 4
Last House On Dead
End St. – Super rare uncut print of 1977 extremely gory cult favorite by
Victor Janos, about a paranoid inmate who begins shooting real snuff
film. Savage & very gory this one spits in your face and doesn’t
care. Complete with deerfoot blow job and slaughter horse scenes
intact. With Steve Morrison. (Good)
Mystics In Bali -
(IN, 1990) A flying severed head (with entrails attached) eats people,
including fetus from a pregnant woman! Letterboxed. (FI) (18+)
Of The Zombies 2 – Hey this is not the sequel dumb as shit zombie flick
no gore just some slow zombies bit it stars jizz master Jamie Gillis so
it paid better then a porno I guess. Rated 4+
Uncut import print of “Terror A The Opera” the 1987 film by Dario
Argento, Not the U.S released. A maniac brutally murders people in
front of his favorite opera singer whom he forces to watch by tying her
up, gagging her and pinning her eyes back with needles. Very gory with
the usual Argento style. (EX)
Perfume Of A Lady In Black
– Uncut lbx of the 1973 giallo from Francesco Barili. When her friends
start mysteriously being killed, Sylvia’s life takes downward spiral
leading her to a series of brutal murders. The shocking, grueling
bloodbath of an ending rivals anything seen in “Cannibal Holocaust”.
One of the best European thrillers of the 70’s, atmospheric, very
obscure, highly recommended, & undiscovered masterpiece. With Mimsy
Queen’s High – The 1990 film with
Cynthia Khan as a mob-boss daughter out for revenge against a rival mob
that killed her father. Simon Yam also stars in another self-righteous
pretty boy role, who meets a messy demise at Khan;s wedding. Lots of
mass bloody shootings & great martial arts scenes. With subs.
Spell Spells Red – when a dwarf sorcerers grave is vandalized the shit
scorpions & splatter rarely hit the fan in this Asian chunkblower
that features several truly repelent mondo sequences. Jumbo black
scorpions attack scene will make ya wanna cry ‘uncle.’ With small but
readable subs. (VG)
Schoolgirls In Chains – (1970’s)
Two brothers kidnap girls and chain them in the cellar for cruel games.
Sick, sick, sick. (M) (18+)
They Bite – Very hard to
find horror film about a porn crew that get massacred by mutant sea
creatures. Has the scene everyone;s talking about, Playboy playmate
Suzy Owens monster ‘Pussy’! yes ms. Owens snatch is snarling monster.
Underground Terror – Very wild gore film about an
ex-mental patient and his buddies terrorizing folks under the N.Y.C.
subway system. He likes to cut off ears & fingers to keep as
Violent Sh*t – Don’t blame me if you are
seeing what you ate about 3 hours ago after you watch this movie!!!
This is the type of shit that makes people want to change the 1st
White Dog – UNCUT import version
of this very rare,and entertaining film from Sam Fuller.A woman hit’s
and injures a white german shepard on her way home from work,and after
bringing it to the vet decide’s to keep it,until it start’s going
apeshit and attacking black peple,See this dog was raised by racist’s
who trained the dog to only attackblack people. Well she turnn;s it
over to a ballsy black dude who want’s to try to “save” the dog, with
bad result’s. This was considered extremely controversial at it’s time
(I don’t have a release date but in the 1970’s), and I’m not even sure
if this was ever released.
X The Unknown – (BR, 1956 B&W) Hammer’s radioactive blob beast! (M)
Girls For Sale – (FR, 1981) An underground prostitution/white slavery
operation. An intern rapes an unconscious hospital patient! In French
only. (FI) [XXX]
Zoltan Hound Of Dracula – Yep even the
prince of darkness has a doggie aawww isn’t that cute ! Well not if
he’s ripping your throat out rated 4+
- Nathan Hamilton
Nathan Hamilton is your average "slightly eccentric" horror movie
junkie. At the age of 32, he’s already been involved in “horror
business” for 20 years as a haunted house actor, ghost tour guide, and
genre blogger/critic/journalist. He currently writes the horror movie blog Son of Celluloid.
Nathan is also quite proficient with a chainsaw. You can decide for
yourself if you’d rather experience his writing or chainsaw wielding
talents. He’s happy either way.
I’ve avoided writing an outright a full piece for this film
even though I do love it. At the same time, I feel very personally about it. I’ve
put it in top ten lists; I’ve commented on it briefly in other people’s
reviews, but otherwise, I have avoided delving deep. So when I was asked to
write something for Extreme Horror Week,
it seemed like a sign that I should deal with the beautiful horror that is the
So I’m rolling up my sleeves and sticking my hands into this
gory mess. Let’s hope we both are more enlightened for it.
It’s pretty well known by now to any who’ve even heard of
this film, that it’s brutal. The thing people don’t express deeply enough in my
opinion is just why and how brutal it is. Possibly because they don’t touch on
the effect the film has on abuse survivors. Trust me, if you are one and you watch
this movie, you may need aftercare to get on with your day. Every slap, every punch feels like a real
blow. I was watching this with a friend the other night, and when she saw Lucie
come in with a shot gun shooting the adults without even blinking, she was both
impressed and shocked.
“They waste no time getting their point across messily.” She
said, and it’s true. When you watch Anna get the crap beat out of her and just
take it, you feel it. You also know that out there in the world, a woman is
getting beat up that brutally, and she’s likely taking it, because the person
who’s beating her is more than half her strength and size. This level of
violence happens in real life, and when you watch a film like this, it reminds
you. When you see little Lucie escape her captures, you know there is a little
girl out there trying to escape extreme child abuse. And when you see her
traumatized, bloodied face screaming wildly, it feels real. They don’t pull the
camera away to give you a breather. They make you see it all, right down to the
bloody marrow. So when you see the size difference between the starving Anna
and the huge man beating her, and then you hear the punch connect with her gut,
you feel it down to your core.
This movie is for abuse survivors likeSaving Private Ryanis for combat veterans. Just like SPR isn’t violence porn, this isn’t
torture porn either. Martyrs is NOT torture porn. It’s not even torture sex. It’s
Let me give you a few examples so you understand my dark analogy
better. Human Centipede 2, is torture
porn. It’s cheap, it’s sleazy, and it’s a throw away. Not to say these are BAD
things, unless you do have taste and find things that are dirty, repulsive and
made for pure shock value to be garbage. Sometimes that’s exactly what you want
to see. The Saw series is torture
sex. They’ve got some thought put into them, some excellent and creative kills,
and some thrilling moments. If you’re a fan of the series (which I happen to
be) you love the characters and their stories as much as you love the torture. Sex is fun, it’s pleasurable, and leaves you
wanting more if done right. You can even have some level of emotional attachment,
but you aren’t committed just because you had a good orgasm.
Torture love-making is different. There is always an emotional investment, even if
not intended. It sweeps over you like a backdraft and changes your life. You
will put up with watching the too-real violence portrayed on screen, which is forced
upon the protagonists, and you will feel
for them. You will know them intimately by the time it’s all over, even though
you know next to nothing about them. You will suffer alongside them until the
very last scene in the movie, and you will be transformed by it.
Because accomplishing a successful martyring of someone is not
an easy task.
The violence done in the search for the prefect martyr isn’t
done for any sadistic pleasure. There is something cold and methodical about
it, but that’s because of the goal. It’s still a fucked up cause this
organization is championing, but there is also something spiritual about it.
Throughout the film we are plunged deep into a world of violence. Nothing
sexual is ever done to the girls who are tortured. It’s almost “clean” the
motivations behind it. As we see later on when Lucie has grown up and hunts
some of her torturers down, the organization evolves to be a very productive,
effective group. They become less primitive in their operations, and treat the
torturing like a duty or job they need to accomplish and attain the spiritual
goal. It’s a dark hero’s journey for females. In fact, of the arch-typical hero’s
journeys, martyrdom is the only one traditionally told about women.
Make no mistake, this is a female story. All the leading
characters are women, from our two protagonists Lucie and Anna, to the leader
of the strange torture cult/organization that seeks out subjects to be martyrs.
As it is explained by the leader who is
only referred to as Mademoiselle, through their trials they have realized only
young women can even attempt to achieve martyrdom. Most subjects just go mad and become victims.
Lucie is considered one such victim, likely because she escaped before she
either died or reached the martyr state and died.
The concept of martyrdom is done so beautifully in this
film, it adds a spiritual layer that makes the too-real violence of the film
more twisted, and yet, more beautiful. To
be a martyr, and not just a victim, is one of the powerful messages this film
brings. What makes someone a victim? Since Lucie escapes we hope she is free
from torture, but when you see how broken she is, you realize she hasn’t really
escaped at all. She basically brought her torture with her in her wounded mind.
Anna however, is never broken. She transcends into martyrdom, and goes beyond the
flesh into something more. I won’t ruin it for you, but when you watch it you’ll
see what I mean.
This is an intensely
powerful film, that while I recommend it highly, I also hope you take caution
when choosing to view it. It can be a therapeutic and darkly illuminating
experience, but it can also break you if you’re not prepared for how fast and
hard this film will come at you. It doesn’t just sucker punch you in the gut;
it will blow you to chunks like a shot gun.
It’s up to you to decide if through viewing the film you
will fight it and be a victim, or if you will surrender to it and martyr
Kweeny Todd is a blog for all lovers of the darker realms. Horror
blogger Kweeny and friends examine the genre they love through their
own peculiar lens, bringing their view with sardonic wit, humor and
intelligence. Kweeny also likes to share bits of her personal life, dark
curiosities and some of her other wacky interests to entertain readers,
as well as amuse herself. Her minions Lord Bearington and Mad Jester
get roped into her antics and are usually forced at razor blade point to
add content to this Glory Kingdom she rules. Hopefully this explains
everything, or explains nothing enough that the goddess Eris is pleased
with our efforts. HAIL DISCORDIA!
GRETA THE MAD BUTCHER aka WANDA THE WICKED WARDEN, ILSA THE WICKED WARDEN (1977)
actress in genre history has elevated a wardress to the cruel carnal
campiness that Dyanne Thorne created with Ilsa. Originally released as
GRETA THE MAD BUTCHER, this unofficial entry in the Ilsa series doesn't
deviate from the formula or the character. I'll admit, I'm a huge fan of
this sick and twisted garbage. The Ilsa films almost exist in a
subgenre by themselves; reminiscent of Audrey Campbell’s Olga character
from 60s sin-ema and transporting the lurid covers of old men's
magazines to the screen and punting them through a goal post of filth
far beyond the expectations promised in their advertising campaigns.
They shock, titillate, disturb and enrage. They deliver the goods ten
fold. The Canadian producers of the Ilsa films pimped their star
overseas to Swiss sexploitation producer Erwin C. Dietrich who hired
Jess Franco to helm the project.
Tossing the icon of
torture and insatiable sexuality to the prolific maestro of cruel W.I.P.
cinema must of felt like the grindhouse gangbang of the year. When the
bodily fluids and flesh are cleared off the sewer floor, we are left
with an unforgettable classic that will either banish your morals into
exile or have them begging forgiveness from a make believe deity.
a corrupt South American dictatorship, a badly beaten escaped inmate
shows up on the property of Dr. Arcos (Jess Franco). Barely clinging to
life, the nude woman reveals atrocities that are being performed at the
Las Palermas Clinic for Sexually Deviant Women. After his calls for an
investigation go unheard, a young woman named Abbey (Tania Busselier)
persuades the doctor to have her committed to the clinic so she can
investigate the disappearance of her sister.
(Dyanne Thorne) runs the top of the asylum with a long bull whip and the
basement with a needle full of political subversive disfiguring acid.
In addition to using pet inmate, Juana (Lina Romay), as a human
pincushion, she runs a side business with her assistant, Drago (Eric
Falk), forcing prisoners into porno and snuff films. It doesn't
take long for the undercover Abbey to end up on the receiving end of
Greta's abuse. Growing suspicious, she gives Juana free reign to uncover
the snooping girls true identity. In one show stopping scene, Juana
forces her to become human toilet paper in exchange for information!
While torturing Abbey's sister, Greta learns Dr. Arcos is the leader of
the revolution. She immediately dispatches henchmen to kill the
idealistic doctor, thus trapping Abbey forever inside the clinic.
C. Dietrich and Jesus Franco's script gets the most bang for its Ilsa
buck by discovering uncharted waters of bad taste. After Drago's snuff
film connection asks for something juicier than rape, they decide to
film an orgy of psychotic male inmates raping and killing mentally and
psychically handicapped female prisoners. With transsexual shower
scenes, human branding and racial whippings, it is sick beyond belief
and never afraid to go all the way. The official Ilsa films require her
demise but these filmmakers are not about to deliver a happy ending.
Abbey is forced to watch her sister suffocated to death by Greta and
then, moments before her release, she is lobotomized. Reducing the heroine
to a drooling epileptic vegetable causes the inmates to rebel and
cannibalize the busty Greta. As shots of inmates teeth sinking into her
giant breasts are mixed with real footage of lions and tigers ripping
the flesh off their prey as a smirking Drago films the ultimate snuff
film from a secret hole in the wall.
claims that the multinational cast speaking in different languages and
post dubbed into English were using a different script than the one she
was performing and Franco was shooting scenes below her waist without
her knowledge and consent. That might be true, but her accusations that
GRETA THE MAD BUTCHER ruined her career are the rantings of an elderly
femme fatale trying to wash shit off her hands. It's obvious the Ilsa
films gave her lackluster career an unexpected boost from the z grade
softcore pictures like THE EROTIC ADVENTURES OF PINOCCHIO (1971) and the
hardcore porno film THE SNATCH (1974) conveniently absent from her
memory. I suspect ILSA TIGRESS OF SIBERIA's audience-insulting script
was more likely the nail in Ilsa’s coffin and Thorne's career. Roger
Corman and Ivan Reitman produced the film and totally missed the formula
audiences craved. If the proposed ILSA MEETS BRUCE LEE IN THE BERMUDA
TRIANGLE had been produced with the evil gusto of WANDA THE WICKED
WARDEN - lines would of stretched around city blocks. Other than
laying nude atop Lina Romay, Thorne's only sex scene in GRETA THE MAD
BUTCHER involves real life husband Howard Maurer, whom she met on the
set of WHAM BAM THANK YOU SPACEMAN (1975). Not that it's a big deal, she
is nude often and rarely does a moment go by without a naked breast or
twat on display. Thorne does what is asked of her, portraying Greta as a
red headed clone of Ilsa complete with German accent.
real surprise here is the performance of Lina Romay. After Jess
Franco's favorite actress Soledad Miranda died in a car accident, he
became infatuated with Romay, the wife of a photographer friend, and
started casting her regularly in horror and erotic films. By the time
GRETA THE MAD BUTCHER was made, both Jess and Lina had divorced their
spouses and entered into a common law marriage that lasts to this day.
The self proclaimed exhibitionist and untrained actress is given more to
work with than just lying on her back and actually manages to bring
some depth to a character that could have easily been one of the one
note wonders associated with such Eurotrash.
Ruedi Küttel abandons the bright contrasts of saturated color from LOVE
CAMP and WOMEN IN CELL BLOCK 9 for dark earthy tones that manifest
visual associations to snuff films and emotional responses of rot and
decay. The film score is minimal. The only location full of music and
color is the cantina where the snuff films are sold. This is also the
setting for an in-joke in which Drago picks between two songs on the
juke box by artists named Emmir Deadato and Al Romero - obviously
referring to directors Ruggero Deodato's CANNIBAL (1977) and George
Romero's NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD (1968) whose subject matter
foreshadows GRETA THE MAD Butcher’s finale.
There are two
versions on DVD to choose from, VIP's beautiful transfer that features a
Franco & Dietrich interview and the U.S. Anchor Bay release which
has a darker image, but contains audio commentary from Dyanne
Thorne and Howard Maurer. It's an interesting contrast, as Thorne
believes the film never made any money and Dietrich reveals it grossed
more money internationally than THE OMEN! Personally, I would pick the
US release for the lively commentary at a third of the price. For all of
Franco's on set sneakiness, the couple adore him and Lina Romay. Their
fond production memories and attempts to justify Ilsa's existence make
for an enjoyable audio track. Whichever copy you choose, I must warn
you: because of new censorship laws the version VIP released through
Anchor Bay in Great Britain is missing 2 1/2 minutes of sex and
GRETA THE MAD BUTCHER is the best of Jess
Franco's nine women in prison films and that’s a pretty tall order.
While 99 WOMEN (1969), BARBED WIRE DOLLS (1975), WOMEN ON CELL BLOCK 9
(1977) and SADOMANIA (1981) may be more sexually explicit, GRETA THE MAD
BUTCHER is by far the most coherent. With it's eternal ability
to offend the status quo, every aficionado of scuzzy cinema should
proudly display this historical exploitation tour de force in the
extreme section of
their DVD shelf
- James Bickert
James Bickert is the man behind the modern day classic "Dear God No!" Keep an eye out for his next film "Frankenstein Created Bikers." It is going to blow the worlds mind.
FEEDAlternate Title: Feed: Consumption is Evolution
German Title: Feed - Friss und stirb! (=Eat and die!)Australia, 2005 Director: Brett Leonard7/10
Nope, this isn't exactly a popular movie (don't worry if you haven't heard of it before), and it's also far from being a classic. To be fair, it's not even a "great" movie. It's about as flawed as the "Human Centipede" flicks, it looks a bit like a made-for-TV film and it's packed with many massively mediocre actors. Oh, and it's disgusting as hell - but dammit, at the same time it's sooo much fun
"Feed" is a nasty little Ozploitation flick about the quite gross feederism-fetish which refers to a bizarre type of sexual relationship where one person (the 'feeder') gets sexual pleasure by feeding the other person (the 'gainer') who gets sexual pleasure from eating and fattening up. Groovy, huh? However, the main feeder here is a special kind of motherfucker: he feeds the women until they die, and shows it all on his website where people can place bets on when the women will die. Not groovy at all.Director Brett Leonard's career started very promising in the 90s where he had some major hits with movies like "Virtuosity", the Dean-Koontz-adaptation "Hideaway" and the not-really-Stephen-King-adaptation "The Lawnmower Man" - but then something seriously went wrong and he ended up shooting Siegfried & Roy documentaries, and rubbish like "Man-Thing" or "Highlander: The Source"..."Feed" (which was made in between) feels like a last gasp of that once so promising director. As if he wanted to say: 'Hey! I'm still here, alive and kicking! And I'm about to shock the shit outta you!' :)
People with a weak stomach should stay away from this - everyone else gets 95 minutes of fat women eating, vomiting, having sex and dying. A hilarious opening scene where the main character strokes his dick while feeding a massive woman with hamburgers, a ramshackle house packed with bags full of carved fat and decaying, maggot-infested remains of bodies, and a funky Rohtenburg-like killer that cuts off his lover's penis and fries it in a pan.
The plot feels like it's cobbled together of 90s David Fincher and early-00s Takashi Miike, nearly all of the characters are unsympathetic and the acting is meh - but this is tolerable when you look at the hilarious amount of fat, gore, puke and boobs, people dancing to "Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka-Dot Bikini", screenshots of websites like "Horse Lovin'" or "Mr. Bear gets into Ms Octopus", and hilarious dialogue lines like:"I go away for a few months and you pierce your clit?" "Do I look dead to you, pussy-boy?" "If all the honey in the world came from this little spout, my brave little man could lick it all out." Hungry for some sick shit? Try "Feed"! xDWiki ~ Imdb
Maynard is a huge Fan of Morrissey, Bret Easton Ellis, Maynard James
Keenan and Horror Movies. Make sure to check out his page Horror Movie
The year is
1996, I'm 17 years old and in my youthful glee I stumble into the only
non-corporate video rental shop in my hometown of Hamden, CT. I wander
around for a while, looking at the titles of films, but knowing almost
nothing about film itself. You see, I had not started down the
degenerate side street that is cult film yet. I was on the precipice of
what would be the single biggest life changing experience I would ever
have. This is bigger than my marriage, bigger than having children,
bigger than my divorce, bigger than playing music in front of hundreds
of people, and bigger than the first time I tasted Whiskey (which if you
know me, that last one was a biggie).
I stare at
the comedy section, thinking to myself that some of these films looked
fun, but most of them I had already seen. I may not have been a film
fanatic then, but I was well versed in comedy. Not one to take too many
chances, I grab a copy of AIRPLANE and resign myself to watch it that
evening. I walk up to the counter and the one person I knew in the place
rings me out.
"Do you have
an account here?" he says as I stare back with glassed over eyes. Shit! I
hadn't even thought of that. "uh, no…this is my first time here" "OK
we'll get you hooked up, I just need a major credit card."
I thought to myself as I struggled with the words to explain that I did
not, and for that matter had never once thought about getting a credit
card, I still lived at home for fuck's sake! "Yeah…I don't have one" My
Acquaintance, his name was Mark and I had met him years before at a
surprise party for a friend of mine. My band at the time was supposed to
play and he had decided, without bothering to tell me, to tune my
ukulele. The problem was, he was a guitarist and had no idea how to tune
a uke and had thrown the whole thing out of whack. Thankfully for me I
was able to get my shit in order and play, albeit a little late.
Surprisingly enough, it wasn't the ukulele business that I remember him
for, it was for a comment he made later in the evening. "I want to make
myself a jumpsuit out of velour and sit in a hot tub, I imagine that
would be the most comfortable a man could ever get". I found out later
he had been dropping acid that night and this was his brilliant
LSD-induced idea. I never did find out if he made that suit. Where was
I? oh yeah…
Mark says to me and proceeds to type a bunch of X's into the system
where my credit card number should have gone. This was an act I would
greatly come to appreciate 6 years later when one of the employees there
accused me of getting free rentals (A false accusation, I might add)
and the owner slapped a $100 fine on my account, which he called
"retroactive late fees", and banned me from the store. I eventually took
on the roguish name of Baron Stamford Von Retrolates for when I would
call to speak with my friends who worked there, I haven't been back
But on this
particular day, as I'm standing there with my copy of AIRPLANE Mark says
something to me that would change my life forever. He says "have you
checked out our cult film section?" "No thanks, I don't feel like
joining any cults" I reply, thinking myself a rapier wit. He chuckles
unamused and says "no, seriously, man, I'll hold this…go check it out"
As I stroll
the wrong direction towards their adult video section, because it was
the only store I had ever seen that didn't keep it's porn in a hidden
room, Mark stops me and points towards their back wall. I head back to
their cult section and this is the part where I wanna say "AND I FELT
NIRVANA SEEING ALL THE AMAZING FILMS THEY HAD!" The problem is, I didn't
know what any of these movies were, I recognized a name or two from
hearing friends talk. I knew what ERASERHEAD was because I was a Twin
Peaks fan and knew some of David Lynch's work. For some reason I knew
about THE DARK BACKWARD, no doubt from overhearing my "with-it" friends
discuss it's more bizarre aspects. The rest of the wall was a mystery. I
start scanning the monolith of alphabetic wonder; 9 1/2 WEEKS, ABBY,
AGUIRRE, THE WRATH OF GOD, BAD LIEUTENANT, BARBARELLA, BASKET CASE,
BEGOTTEN, and so on. I scan the entire wall, but that title "Begotten"
keeps attracting my attention. The box was what they called "faced",
meaning the art was facing out and I remember it freaking me out to no
end. However, like all good disturbed kids, I decided to pick it up and
walked it up to the counter.
I ask and Mark smiles a demented toothy smile that I will never forget
and says to me "yeah, I think you'll like this…it's about killing a
god". "awesome!" I reply as I pay for my rentals and head home.
At the time I
was what most people would call a "night owl", but really I was goddamn
nocturnal. I decided to wait to watch the film and looking back I sort
of wish I hadn't because the one thing you should never do when
encountering BEGOTTEN for the first time, is watch it at 2 am.
A title screen comes up and within seconds I'm clutching at my pillow.
The Grainy high contrast style, the sad little cabin in the woods, and
the creepy "through the window" shot before the big reveal of God
Killing Himself is a terror I will not likely experience again in my
lifetime. It's also a terror I would not likely wish on anyone else.
As I sit
there, absorbed into the grainy black and white I see disturbing image
after disturbing image. I find my brain, against it's better judgement,
actually becoming enthralled with the film. I should have turned it off.
I should have left it for morning, but my brain thought better and
forced me to continue watching. I sat through the entire film. I sat
through a god cutting pieces of himself off, a "messiah" being born of
these pieces, a tribe of druids kidnap the "messiah" and beat it's sad,
naked body. I watched the entire film with my eyes glued to the screen
and when I was done I had a strange thought.
"I want to watch that again"
And I did.
something about this simple, yet savage black and white silent film that
sparked my proverbial soul. I was born that day and the way I see the
world has not been the same since. I dove face first into that cult wall
the next day and I devoted every excess penny I had to watch all of
those deranged, absurd, surreal, brilliant, awful, heartfelt, sardonic,
twisted, but always fun films. It took me 2 years to finish them all and
it has been a quest that I've maintained to this day. It all began with
Begotten and I couldn't even begin to thank E. Elias Merhige. I owe my love of the disturbed, the distressing, the provocative, and ultimately, my love of film to him.
I'll get this out of the way: I adore this film. In fact, this is one of my favorite horror movies of all time. For those
of you who are unfamiliar, Cannibal Holocaust is an Italian cannibal movie that created the 'found footage' sub genre of horror that's been heavily borrowed since. The premise of this sick-flick is that a team of
young documentarians travel to a remote location to study a cannibal population and never return. Upon
finding their film-reels, a professor returns from the Amazon with the film reels the team left behind. The majority
of this movie is watching the "found" footage from the reels.
What makes this movie so special is how unflinchingly aggressive it is. It contains intense brutality and incredibly realistic
effects (for which the director infamously had to bring the actors into court to prove he didn't actually kill them). It also
includes several scenes of real animal deaths. While these scenes are uncomfortable to watch, it does make a
statement as to how far they were willing to go with on-screen violence. A lot of movies have shown more extreme violence
than this one, but it's how well done and realistic it is that has created such a legendary reputation. The infamous tagline
for Cannibal Holocaust reads "The one that goes all the way!" and it lives up to it.
Salo: The 120 Days of Sodom (1975) - Pier Paolo Pasolini
This movie isn't technically horror in the traditional sense of the word, but it's so extreme and disturbing in its depiction
of sex and violence that it's built a monumental reputation in the extreme horror world. This film was based on
Marquis de Sade's infamous book "The 120 Days of Sodom," which is arguably the most depraved and controversial
book in history, and was directed by Pier Paolo Pasolini (who was mysteriously murdered by a gay prostitute shortly
after its completion). This movie covers the full spectrum of de Sade's degenerate perversion, from pedophilia, coprophagia,
murder, rape, incest, etc. that will surely disgust most viewers, but what makes this particular movie so interesting was that
Pasolini was a true maestro of cinema, yet he adapted such a despicable literary source. Salo, like it's source material,
is rightfully polarizing are repugnant, but for those with the endurance to stomach it, there are some interesting themes
and ideas behind its ugliness.
Irreversible (2002) - Gaspar Noe
is another one of my favorite films. Gaspar Noe is a relentlessly
bleak, nihilistic director, but his eye behind
the lens is so razor-sharp and stylistic that his work is impossible to
dismiss. The arc in this film plays backwards, opening the movie with
the ending of the story, and shows the traumatic events of a brutal rape
and revenge occurring in Paris. The first 20 minutes of the film
a camera that never stops moving to create a feeling of physical nausea
from the viewer and doesn't let up from there. Irreversible features
two scenes that are infamously painful to watch (one of which being a
10+ minute unflinching scene of rape), that has created a polarizing
horror fans and critics alike. I personally think there's a lot to
admire in this movie if you can stomach the gruesomeness.
August Underground Trilogy - Fred Vogel
series is about as dark and uncomfortable as horror films can be. There
is no storyline or real characters, everything is shot on a handheld
and these movies are very, very graphic. These pseudo-snuff films go out
of their way to cross nearly every boundary imaginable and they do it
incredibly realistic effects work and believable acting. I wouldn't
personally recommend these movies to anybody, but their intense
the extreme has earned its spot as the horror community's bastard child.
A Serbian Film (2010)- Srdjan Spasojevic
A Serbian Film is the most
recent movie on this list and it has quickly snowballed its reputation
to infamy. This movie follows Milos, a retired porno
actor, as he slowly becomes entangled into a brutal scheme devised by a
rich lunatic. Without delving too much into details, let's just say the
reputation here is more than warranted. A Serbian Film is angry,
pitch-black, ultra-violent and (dare I say?) -- hateful. This movie,
is also of extremely high production value, acting, lighting, etc. which
creates an odd sheen for the atrocities that take place. This is one
only be recommended with a warning for the morbidly curious and those
looking for the darkest annals cinema has to offer.
Aftermath(1994) - Nacho Cerda
Aftermath is a
30 minute film with no dialogue about a mortician who has sex with a
corpse. That's it. Now, while the story, or lack thereof, is
clearly skeletal, it's really the execution that separates this nasty
little feature. The horrific scenes are shot with stark precision and
are set to
a classical music score. It's bizarre and both easy to praise and
discredit, but it has rightfully become a staple of extreme horror and
Nekromantik - (1987) - Jorg Buttgereit
German nasty is legendary among horror and sleaze fans. The story is
what you'd expect based on the title and iconic cover art:
a man and his girlfriend have a manage a trois with a corpse and things
go even further downhill from there. I personally enjoy all
of Buttgereit's films and think they have an interesting balance between
sleazy depravity and charm. This movie is low-budget and
clearly a labor of love but its maintained its legend this long for a
reason. It's also home to one of the wildest climaxes in horror history.
The Last House on the Left - (1972) - Wes Craven
have to admit that this selection may be biased since it was the first
movie that truly disturbed me. There are plenty of movies more extreme
than this by today's standards but something about this one has always
set the precedence for me. This movie the first movie Wes Craven ever
made, and it's easily the grittiest and most aggressive in his catalog.
It's essentially a remake of Ingmar Begman's "The Virgin Spring"
whereas a group of savage criminals unwittingly stumble into the hands
of their murder victim's father. To me, Last House on The Left
is the first horror movie that has such an angry tone to it. There are
some out of place scenes that obscure the mood briefly every once
in a while, but overall this is a very bleak exploitation movie at its
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