Cannibal Holocaust

Cannibal Holocaust ★★★★★

No matter how many times I watch Cannibal Holocaust, it always manages to get under my skin. It's not just the very troubling animal deaths, the sexual violence, the grim social commentary, and the general cruelty on display, there's something unnerving that permeates everything about it from its jarringly upbeat score to its sardonic lead performances. It's disturbing as it is incredibly well put together. If its genius was something of a fluke where everything came together at the right time and the right place, I don't know, but it wouldn't surprise me because it's by far and large the best movie Deodato ever made. The way it's structured — beginning with a borderline dull and generic opening, to its film within a film (with real footage, even though within the reality of the film, it's not real - ARGH), to its found footage pièce de résistance — works perfectly in making the brutality of its finale feel so horrifyingly real. It's sad that Cannibal Holocaust triggered a string of trashy cannibal films that imitated its cruelty to animals rather than its subversive filmmaking, and yes, it's hard to watch its disgusting genuine violence, but I can't deny the power of this grimy film.

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