Friday, 27 May 2011


Title: Teeth
Director: Mitchell Lichtenstein
Released: 2007
Staring: Jess Weixler, Hale Appleman, Ashley Springer, Josh Pais, John Hensley, Nicole Swahn, Lenny Von Dohlen

Plot: Dawn (Weixler) is a spokesperson for local Christian abstinence group “The Promise”, while she unknowingly also suffering from a condition known as “vagina dentate” better known as a toothed vagina.

Review: “Teeth” is a film which is all about it’s concept much like “The Human Centipede” (2009), “Zombie Strippers” (2008) and “Snakes On A Plane” (2006) and while having a concept film sure helps to generate a lot of word of mouth press, these films usually end up being as quickly forgotten as they burst onto the public conscious, with this film certainly being similar to this extent like “Snakes On A Plane” for although it succeeded in generate a lot of interest on it’s release I’ve yet to find more than a handful of people who actually bother to watch that film when it came out, the same could also be said for "Teeth" though it’s not quite been forgotten yet, but this could also be a lot to do with the sheer snigger factor that the idea of a vagina with teeth tends to bring out in folks.

The directorial debut of Mitchell Lichtenstein (son of 60’s pop artist Roy Lichtenstein), here he has clearly aimed for shock appeal here by taking such a b-movie premise and one also previously explored in the slightly less subtle “Sexual Parasite: Killer Pussy” (2004) and to an extent achieved it, especially how he had neighbours to the film set protesting the film, believing that the film was porn and only it's when you watch the film that you realise that he is more bizzarly and surprisingly aiming to hit the indie comedy market only to miss it completely as well as creating what is essentially an extremely tedious horror film at it’s core, no thanks to a painfully slow build up to the first real introduction of her condition, after hinting at it from the opening in which a young Dawn extra teeth unwittingly bite her step brother Brad’s wandering finger, which even more creepily he does in a paddling pool directly in front of their parents, an incestuous obsession he continues into adulthood. Still her condition is never fully explained though, seeing how their house is located in the shadow of a huge nuclear power station, we can only assume that Director Lichtenstein wants the audience to assume that this is the cause

Dawn’s is played convincingly by Weixler whom unsurprisingly picked up the jury price when the film was premiered at sundance, while also drawing comparisons to Meryl Streep. constantly being torn between her ever increasing sexual urges, while her religious beliefs, leave her stranded in the social no mans land between frigid and slut, a battle which rages on within her school as her fellow classmates face the continual pressures to give into their urges, meanwhile sex education classes have pictures of the female reproductive organs taped over no doubt due to pressures from the local religious community and further explaining the lack of knowlege about her own body Dawn posesses, with her own belief further driving home in her mind the idea of such areas a being taboo for any kind of self exploration, as seen in scenes of her cautiously and gingerly exploring herself. Still though many questions are raised in this film Lichtenstein chooses not to clarify the majority of them.

When faced with her own sexual awakening brought on by dating fellow promise member Toby (Appleman), and the rejection of his sexual advances, which in turn lead to an attempted rape, which needless to say ends badly for Toby, that we finally get the first pay off at almost 45 minutes into the film, which is certainly almost torturous when being forced to endure so many of the characters, who are either cookie cutter caricatures or just plain unlikable sleaze balls which seemed to be nearly every male character in the film, making me wonder if this film had been scripted by the writers of “The L Word” which also had the tendency of portraying nearly all their male characters in some form of negative light and usually as greasy and disgusting almost as if they were trying to put across the message that their predominantly lipstick lesbian cast, had become lesbian purely because the men around them were such scum and thier fairer sex was a much more attractive proposition, when faced with thier limited choices and it’s similar feelings I felt here, were it would seem that any guy she feels any form of attraction to is either a potential rapist or complete Douchbag. Still Hensley’s attempt at tough guy bravado playing the quick to violence step brother Brad is arguably one of the most laughable performances in the film, with Hensley coming off more moody than threatening and certainly not helped by his cheap fake looking tattoos, much like the fact he continues undeterred to have sex with his girlfriend while his step mother collapses outside his bedroom door, in one the least plausible moments in the film, which seems to serve only as a way to setup Dawn’s revenge against him later in the film, where her revenge is one certainly served ice cold.

The body count is surprisingly light here, thanks mainly to Lichtenstein refusing to turn Dawn into a woman on a mission of vengeance against these obnoxious men who she seems to frequently attract and only hints at Dawn taking on such a mission with the stumble of an ending, which rather than setting up a sequel pretty much marked were the concept finally runs out of steam, as honestly this film leaves nowhere essentially for her character to go. Still the attack scenes while being all centred predictably around the crotch region (but then what else is going to go there…..actually don’t answer that), we also get some chopped off digits formally belonging to Dawn’s Gynaecologist, all filmed in a very over-exaggerated style, which added a nice comical edge, much like the surviving victims refusal to say how they got their injuries, while having their assorted detached limbs reattached. Rather than trying to go for full on gore, though for those of you wandering wanting to see a chewed of penis, will be happy to know that Lichtenstein doesn’t disappoint or cheat the audience by keeping things off screen.

“Teeth” might be an intriguing premise, but essentially this ends up being a film which is certainly all bark and very little bite, thanks to it’s mish mash characterisation and horrible pacing, let alone the fact Lichtenstein seems to be trying cover far too many bases, rather than focusing on the main reason were watching the film to begin with, while leaving far to many of these avenues of exploration open, to the point that you wonder if there was any real point to the film. So like any potential date of Dawn’s I would recommend that you approach this one with caution.

Saturday, 21 May 2011

The Stendhal Syndrome

Title: The Stendhal Syndrome
Director: Dario Argento
Released: 1996
Staring: Asia Argento, Thomas Kretschmann, Marco Leonardi, Luigi Diberti, Paolo Bonacelli

Plot: Detective Anna Manni (Argento) is hunting for serial killer Alfredo Grossi (Kretschmann) with her assignment taking her to Florence as part of the investigation. While at a museum, Anna finds her drawn into a trance like state, while suddenly struck by the Stendhal Syndrome. Unknown to Anna this weakness has been discovered by Alfredo who soon plots to use it against her.

Review: Dario Argento is yet another director who for one reason or another I’ve only recently got around to watching, with this film being the first I’ve seen outside of his “Masters of horror” episode “Jenifer”, which suffered the wrath of the censors with Argento’s expressing a severe disgust that his episode ended up receiving several noticeable cuts, while narrowly avoiding being banned outright, a fate which was unsurprisingly suffered by Miike Takashi’s episode “Imprint”. Still Argento's work remains highly recommended by many Horror fans, though perhaps I could have chosen an easier title to start with, especially with this film being so heavy in graphic rape sequences, which make it anything but an easy film to watch.

Dario once again casts his daughter Asia who appears here in the second of her four collaborations to date with her father, despite his original intention of casting Bridget Fonda in the lead role, while also considering both Jennifer Jason Leigh and Daryl Hannah with the plan of making the film in America, which like his plans for his leading lady all fell through for various reasons, which ultimatly would lead Argento to relocate the film to Italy and cast his daughter in the lead role, a choice almost reminiscent of Francis Ford Coppola casting his own daughter Sofia when faced with similar issues on the production of “The Godfather Part 3” with her performance being largely panned by critics and Coppola being accused of Nepotism, all things which Argento managed to avoid here, even though casting his own daughter in a role which sees her character being graphically raped is certainly questionable and a credit to the professionalism of Argento that he would treat her the same as any other actress, when it came to filming such difficult sequences.

Surprisingly the revel of Kretschmann as the films psycho comes early in the film, yet removes none of his creepy and hypnotic presence when he is on the screen, with Kretschmann not only dying his hair blonde and learning word perfect Italian for the role, but also figuring out how to hide a razorblade behind his teeth aswell as how to manipulate it within his mouth, without slicing himself, a skill which is used to highly memorable effect, with such dedication to the role earning him much praise from Argento, who had first noticed Kretschmann when he had stared alongside Asia in her previous film “La Reine Margot” (1994) with this role also gaining him international recognition, though despite warm praise this it would take him until 2002 to break into Hollywood with his role Polanski’s “The Pianist”, continuing a running theme throughout his career of playing officers of the Third Riech.

The subject matter of the effects of rape, as I have mentioned already certainly make this not the easiest film to watch, but Argento has chosen to treat this almost as a study of how rape can effect it’s victims, even though he still finds time for some sadistic style blood letting, torture and torment with Asia in particular finding these scenes especially hard to shoot, more so with her father being so caught up in his work, that Asia called time on these scenes when she felt she had reached her limit, often leaving the set for the rest of the day to recover from the effects which these scenes had on her and even as a viewer they are not easy to watch and a testament to her ability to portray them with such a realistic edge, much like how Anna deals with her situation and her various stages of recovery, which see her taking up boxing and more dramatically cutting her long hair short, all while refusing to play the victim and more importantly all shown after she has had her revenge on her attacker and it was this part of the film, were I felt it lost a lot of it’s pace and generally didn’t seem to know were to go and while Asia might not be as convincing as the recovering victim, she certainly makes up for it in the scenes which matter.

This meandering use of running time same could also explain for Argento’s attempts to explore the idea of The Stendhal Syndrome, a condition named after a 19th century French writer, were sufferers of the condition have been known to suffer from dizziness, fainting and even hallucinations when exposed to work of art. It’s also a condition that Argento reportedly suffered from as a child while climbing the steps of the Parthenon, were he found himself in a trance like state which caused him to be lost from his parents for hours and here proves a handy excuse for Anna to suffer several hallucinations which see her walking into paintings and actually interacting with her surroundings, which provide several of the more surreal moments including her making out with a giant grouper fish.

The gore here is all pretty bloody with Argento taking a misstep with the ill advised use of CGI here, which honestly took more away from the film that it added, with the CGI essentially being used only for the more pointless of sequences like two pills travelling down Anna’s throat and a bullet through a victim’s cheek. Still seeing how the violence is all rape related it’s far from fun times here, especially with Argento frequently testing the limits of his audience with these scenes, which time reveled a little too much sadistic delight in what was being shown.

“The Stendhal Syndrome” is not an easy film to watch at any stretch and it’s subject matter would be covered a lot more effectively for myself atleast in “Irreversible” (2002). What also really did not help me get more into film, was definatly that version of the film I saw suffered from a really hideous dubbing, so I would strongly recommend hunting down the subtitled version if you’re an Argento completist or the kind of film goer who likes to challenge themselves, as this film is certainly one to endure rather than enjoy and that’s putting it mildly to say the least.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

Bad Biology

Title: Bad Biology
Director: Frank Henenlotter
Released: 2008
Staring: Charlee Danielson, Anthony Sneed, Mark Wilson, John A. Thorburn, Remedy

Plot: Jennifer (Danielson) suffers from the unusual condition of being born with seven Clitorises (and that doesn’t even include the unknown ones inside her). As a result of this condition she constantly finds herself on a quest for sexual fulfilment, a quest which leads her to meet Batz (Sneed) who himself has his own unique condition of being in possession of a monster sized penis which has developed a mind of it’s own as well as an ever increasing drug habit….did I mention this is also a love story?

Review: Frank Henenlotter is a director I’ve had little experience with, yet it’s safe to say that he has certainly gained a cult like following since his memorable debut “Basket Case” (1982), which is frequently mistaken for being part of the “Video Nasty” list despite it only appearing as a film for rental stores to avoid, than one of the 75 titles on the banned list. Still this debut would set a tone for his work to follow, all showcasing his continuing obsession of bringing back the sleaze of the grindhouse films he grew up obsessing over, long before the like of Quentin Tarantino and Rob Zombie attempted their own stabs at the Neo-Grindhouse genre and while many of the 80’s horror directors would move onto more mainstream projects, with names notorious with the era such as Sam Rami and Peter Jackson heading up big budget productions like the “Spiderman” and “Lord of the Rings” Trilogies, Henenlotter has preferred to stick to the same 42nd st sleaze which continues to service as his inspiration.
Still on the back of a review by one of those same rabid Henenlotter fans, aswell one of my blogging heroes Jenn over at “Calavade of Perversions” recently giving this film her praise, I thought it was time I finally gave him a look.

Incase you haven’t realised from the plot outline, this really is a sleazy and extremely random film, which pretty much wastes zero time in going from normality to badshit insane as we open with bookish photographer Jennifer, explains her predicament while prowling for casual sex, to help curb her continuous urges, even suffering countless orgasms just by sitting in a particular way, yet constantly being faced with never being able to find a man capable of satisfying her needs, which might have a lot to do with her black widow tendency of killing these casual partners in the throws of passion, while also photographing them for her subtly titled photography project “Fuckface”. Another side effect of Jennifer’s condition is that by having sex, her body causes her to give birth to mutated babies mere hours after having sex, which she even more casually disguards, with no kind of emotional attachment, either leaving them were they are born or even more shockingly throwing them into the trash. Still the minimal level of concern she has for these children is clearly highlighted, when Jennifer suddenly breaks the forth wall, to tell the audience exactly what she thinks about their concern, while advising them to just walk away, as the camera suddenly moving to a handheld stance all the more effective as it forfills the now overwhelming desire by audience to see exactly what one of these mutant offspring look like, with Henenlotter clearly knowing the power and effect of telling someone not to do something.

On the other side of things Batz is a emotionally complex and fragile character, having become a recluse thanks largely to his condition driving him to the brink of insanity, especially as his drug addicted penis grows all the more frenzied, with his only relief coming from his industrialised jerk off machine and a steady supply of pornography which constantly streams into his dilapidated and crumbling mansion, were he hides away while trying to fight the urges of his possessed member. Batz also breaks the forth wall to provide an insight into his condition, via a drug induced haze rather than another sudden outburst like Jennifer’s. Still Batz proves to be the interesting counterbalance to Jennifer, which means unfortunately that Jennifer comes across as a frenzied nymphomaniac while Batz seems more depressed and almost suicidal, but honestly neither of these leads are particularly likable, with Jennifer frequently coming off like one of those pretentious art school students, who ramble off bullshit to make their work seem more interesting than it is.

Henenlotter is clearly going for sheer shock factor here, but seeing how this has been the running theme throughout all his movies, it’s not surprising to see it back with a vengeance here. Throughout the realitivly short running time, he frequently seems to be playing a constant game of one-upmanship with himself from the laughably over enthusiastic sex scenes, to a bizarre photo shoot with the models all wearing vagina face masks. Still this all pales in comparison to when Henenlotter having run out places to go or perhaps seeing how far he can push things, has Batz see’s his penis detach itself and head off on a mass rape spree of nubile young ladies, who bizarrely don’t seem to mind to much, though Henenlotter sadly misses the opportunity to have the weirdest chase sequence ever, instead having Batz and Jennifer arguing while it eventually comes back on it’s own accord to then engage in a scene which I’m sure can be seen as more than a little blasphemous, but chances are that if you’ve made it this far, there won’t be little left to shock you when Henenlotter throws this scene in.

All the cast here are amateurs and unknowns, which makes it a real mixed bag of performances, though when questioned about this use of no name actors in his films, in an interview by “Film Threat” Henenlotter responded by saying

“I always [use amateurs]. They are easier to work with – they’re not SAG. When you say amateur, it’s not a denigration. It’s just their first time acting. Charlee [Danielson] and Anthony [Sneed] are great in ["Bad Biology"]. One of the reasons they are so great is that they never learned they are allowed to say no.”

It’s this belief which seems to explain why Henenlotter is so keen to push the boundaries of taste so much throughout, especially with such a willing cast to help him, bring these warped ideas to life. Still this use of questionable acting talent, when combined with cheap digital film stock, doesn’t help the film from looking like another direct to video cheapie. Still it does have some creative old school effects, including Batz’s stop motion penis which he constantly fights even at one point punching it in an attempt to bring it back under control aswell as taping it to his leg, which is all before it truly takes on a life of its own, detaching itself and punching itself through walls, as it slithers from victim to victim on its mini rampage.

"Bad Biology" is not the film to win me over to the cult of Henenlotter, though it has furthered my curiousity for the rest of his back catalogue, especially as this is usually the place to find most directors best and inspired work, I mean just look at John Carpenters career and the less said about the Japanese poster the better really.

Saturday, 7 May 2011


Title: Rubber
Director: Quentin Dupieux
Released: 2010
Staring: Stephen Spinella, Roxanne Mesquida, Jack Plotnick, Haley Ramm, Wings Hauser, Ethan Cohn, Charley Koontz, Tara O’Brien

Plot: Robert is a tyre whom having gained life rolls through the local desert town, while also at the same time possessing the power to make things randomly explode using the power of mindbullets (“That’s telekenisis Kyle!”….sorry couldn’t resist it).

Review: Right from the start Director Dupieux wastes little time in letting the audience know what sort of film they are going to be in for, as Lieutenant Chad (Spinella) not so much breaks the fourth wall, but kicks it down and grabs hold of the audience directly, to delivers a monologue on how certain aspects of films are just accepted without question, using the colour of ET’s skin and more bizarrely the bathroom habits of the cast of “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” (1974) as examples of this theroy and this of course is after he has climbed out of a trunk of a police car, which inturn has just driven through a seemingly random maze of wooden chairs. This monologue it would seem is Dupieux’s way of asking the audience to not question everything they are going to see, over the films relatively brief run time and instead to just roll with it, which honestly might be the best way to watch this film, especially when you consider just how ludicrous the plot is, let alone everything else which happens in the film.

“Rubber” in many ways is part music video and part experimental film, all contained in the shell of a B-movie plot. Still this hasn’t stopped it from becoming a highly talked about movie, even if most of the discussion has been in regard to the fact it’s a movie about a killer tyre who can make things explode on will, rather than anything regarding the rest of the plot and for the majority of folks I think they will find the trailer to be more than enough, with any attempts to watch the film no doubt proving a frustrating experience at best. Still for fans of the work of more surreal directors such as Michel Gondry and Greg Araki they still might find much to enjoy here, with this film easily in the same category of their most surreal works like “Science of Sleep” (2006) and “Nowhere” (1997), while at the same time recalling memories of Daft Punk’s “Electroma” (2007). This film like that providing an almost glorified music video for Mr. Oizo and Gaspard Augé (one half of French electro duo Justice), who here supply the majority of the soundtrack. Soundtrack wise towards the end it does become kind of samey but at the same time perfectly frames certain sequences in the film, as does the seemingly random inclusion of Blue Magic’s “Just don’t want to be lonely” which comes completely out of nowhere, but helps to break up the overly similar electro, which at time descents a little too far into shoe gaze territory.

While the range of Dupieux’s creation might seem limited, he still has managed to bring a lot of character to a seemingly personality devoid object, in much the same way that John Carpenter did with his beach ball alien in “Dark Star” (1974). In Dupieux’s hands the humble tyre, is capable of not only stalking Sheila (Mesquida) but also processing a childlike curiosity to his surroundings, as he discovers his new found abilities and this is all without the aid of any additional emotions as Dupieux thankfully avoids slapping Robert with a misguided voiceover.

While the film largely focuses on Robert as he goes about terrorising the residents of the desert motel, he has for some unexplained reason chosen to hang around, his every move is eagerly watched by a group of binocular welding onlookers whose observations are frequently in tune with the thoughts of the audience, before randomly suffering a severe bout of food poisoning for no real reason, but no doubt by that point you will have stopped questioning things happening in this film. Still this group frequently refer to what they are watching as being “The film” with one member even scolding another for daring to film what they are watching on his camcorder. Meanwhile Lieutenant Chad keeps a surreal edge on things, by frequently proclaiming to everyone that they are all part of a movie, even inviting a fellow police officer to shoot him at one point, which even more bizarrely proves completely un-fatal, not that Dupieux answers any of these questions, instead leaving it up to the audience to make some kind of sense of what they are watching, though it would seem even Dupieux didn’t know what he had created, especially when the ending comes so suddenly and sloppily, despite Dupieux still setting up for a sequel which I think is an idea best left unexplored.

Essentially this film would have worked best as a short and stretched out to feature length, is no doubt going to seriously test the patience of the more casual or less open minded movie goer and while there are some great moments in the film, from the tyre in the shower sequence and the black humour of the boy using road kill as extra topping on his fathers pizza, there is a lot to like about this film, as truly random and beautifully bizarre as it is, while certainly marking Dupieux out as a film maker to watch and while it might be heavily flawed in places and suffer from some serious repetition it’s still strangely watchable like only the best surreal classics of which it will no doubt be ranked alongside.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

The Human Centipede (First Sequence)

Title: The Human Centipede (First Sequence)
Director: Tom Six
Released: 2009
Staring: Dieter Laser, Ashley C. Williams, Ashlynn Yennie, Akihiro Kitamura

Plot: Dr. Heiter (Laser) was once famous for his surgical skill in separating Siamese twins, though now he has much darker designs, as he kidnaps a trio of tourists, with the intention of binding them together to realise his ultimate obsession.

Review: Ever since the buzz started with this film, there were countless bloggers eager to donate thier space to air their excitement about the release of the film, while for myself it resembled nothing more than horror once more getting lazy and resorting to sheer shock tactics than real horror to convince the movie going public to hand over their money. So finally I bothered to sit down and watch it, after spending far too much time hearing people raving on about how shocking and disgusting it was, though having now witness it for myself, I can safely say it’s more the concept rather than anything shown on the screen which raises these comments, so gore hounds are bound to find much to gripe about here, especially seeing how the majority of the original buzz seem to hint at the film being more gory than it is. Here the power of suggestion is really being more prominent, than anything resembling the extreme gore and violence Director Six had hinted at, but then Six seems to care more about coming across as much as an oddball as he can, which is no doubt all part of his intent to generate further publicity for his films, when essentially he is the same as the child who deliberately chews with their mouth open, knowing that it will generate a negative reaction. Still this hasn’t stopped the hype machine from working overtime, to raise this film way above being another forgettable horror title, especially with the production notes stating that it has been proclaimed “The most horrific film ever made” while curiously emitting who had bestowed such high praise, something questioned upon the films release by the British newspaper “The Guardian” who also brought up the claim when they interviewed Six, who responded shiftly by proclaiming that it had been given by UK tabloid “The Sun”, a claim further questioned when they also proclaimed the closest “The Sun” had some in their review was “sickest film ever?” and even that claim was followed by a question mark.

So what about the film? Well Six wastes zero time in establishing Dr. Heiter for the oddball he is, rather than go for a slow reveal of his madness, as we are minutes into the film and we have him stalking a truck driver with a tranquiliser rifle, while said driver is filmed taking a dump in the woods. This of course after instigating that the Doctor is a fan of masturbating to pictures of his supposedly beloved dogs, the extent of this love certainly could be questioned when you find out, exactly what happened to them later in the film. Still the film continues to move at this brisk pace, while certainly not doing much favour for the local tourism, seeing how one local is portrayed as a filthy pervert and it’s not long before the fiesty Lindsey (Williams) and her shy and easily lead friend Jenny (Yennie) have stumbled across the home of Dr. Heiter. Once in the home it quickly descends into what is essentially just an extended chase sequence, as Six attempts to create some drama before the realisation of the twisted fantasy of Dr. Heiter. Sadly it’s once he has his Centipede that the film runs out of steam quickly, as having blown his load on this nightmarish creation, Six now finds he has nowhere to go and with the shock of seeing three people surgically graphed ass to mouth soon wearing thin, there is a stupidly large amount of the run time devoted to Dr. Heiter attempting to train the centipede, frequently attacking the conjoined trio with a riding crop, as they struggle to adapt with the only real shock during these scenes coming from the now well documented “Feed Her” scene, but again this is heavy on the power of suggestion than anything see.

The origin of “The Human Centipede” is supposedly drawn from similar experiments carried out by the Nazi’s who reportedly had tried the same thing with dogs, but not with humans, with the closest example of these experiements being attempted on humans, being “The angel of death” Josef Mengele’s experiments in creating artificial conjoined twins. Still the Nazi link is certainly present here with fellow Centipede member Katsuro frequently branding Dr. Heiter a Nazi and while Dr. Heiter’s connections to the Nazi’s are never revealed, it is strongly hinted at by Six, which if it wasn’t due to the strong performance by Laser who helps the character rise above such a clumsy label, so that his obsession is drawn more from his aclaimed work as a surgion seperating conjoined twins and with a lesser actor could easily be written off as poor characterisation and it’s only Laser’s performance that stops the character from becoming a sheer caricature. Still if Six really wanted us to believe that Dr. Heiter is such a crazed doctor, why do we have scenes of him in his garden wearing jeans and a t-shirt? It makes even less sense when every other scenes to be about gaining the maximum amount of creepiness from this character, from the long lab coat and mirrored glasses to his obsession with keeping his home as surgically clean as possible and these random scenes take the audience out of the moment, by having them question the sudden change in style for the doctor.

With Laser busily chewing the scenery, it’s certainly a tough act for the other actors to follow, but then their performances end up being fairly limited with Katsuro’s spending the whole film cursing the doctor (quite understandably) while the girls act continually scared. I did question though why Katsuro was included in the film as if it was purely a question of having a lead character who didn’t speak English, why didn’t Six just use a German speaking character? My only conclusion I could draw, was that it was for similar reasons that Raymond Burr showed up as an American reporter in “Godzilla” (1956), which had essentially been so that it would be an easier sell to American audiences, with Katsuro’s inclusion being an attempt to do the same except for the Asian market, whom in recent years has been battling with the new wave of French shockers for who can produce the freshest shocks and certainly a key market for any new horror release.

I have no doubt that this film has it’s fans, but when you look past it’s surface shocks and the gloss of the occasionally pretty cinematography, it’s becomes a flimsy film at best and once you trim down the centipede training sequences, from their almost voyeuristic length, it also becomes a film which would struggle to make feature length. Still the shocks have bought in the bucks and with “Human Centipede 2: Full Sequence” already in production, with Six promising an even larger centipede of 12 people, it really does make me wonder were he expects to take the film, outside of just going over the same ground he covered in the first film. Still if Six can manage to put as much effort into his film making as he does trying to convince us all of his oddball behaviour he might still surprise us as a film maker, once he moves onto less grotesque projects whose only aim is to clearly offend, disgust and shock, rather than create anything resembling true horror.
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