Friday, October 9, 2015

Horrors of October - Cannibal Ferox

Cannibal Ferox (1981)

An anthropologist, her photographer brother and their floozy friend venture out into the Amazon in order to dispel the myth of cannibalism. In the thick of it, they meet up with cocaine-sniffing thug Mike, who's exiled from NYC after stiffing the Brooklyn mob and has just ran afoul with the local natives after torturing and killing some of their brethren. CANNIBAL FEROX is the second most known Italian cannibal film, behind the more controversial and groundbreaking CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST, but is probably the most accessible of the genre, that is if anyone actually wanted to experience this dirty sub-category of horror. I say this largely because this is my own dipping of the toes into this murky water and from what I saw, it does have some inhumane ideas but it's mostly a below-average jungle adventure with some sleaze and gore in it. The main plot is very basic and bland, only springing to life when the very pulpy dubbed dialogue comes in, it often ruins the film's flow due to the mob subplot in New York, and it swipes the ironic ending of CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST nearly wholesale. The brief scenes of real animal killings are disgusting and completely pointless yet can easily be fast-forwarded or have their chapters skipped if you have a clever eye and an itchy trigger finger. The infamous breast hanging scene is pretty overhyped and the fake bloodshed is often more laughable than shocking, though you will still let out an "ouch" every now and then. The only true beneficial features of the movie are John Morghen's campily sneering performance as Mike and the pretty funky and moody musical score. I know that some people don't have the stomach for this and/or fear its cruel contents but as a horror film soldier, I have seen worst exploitative efforts to be fully unnerved by this tripe.


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