Friday, October 7, 2011

Day 6: Cannibal Holocaust

"Why is this in your collection?"

It's usually a question reserved for the likes of what one would dub "a guilty pleasure". I have gotten to the point where I have no guilt for what I like. Then there's a flip side to that coin.

"Why is this in your collection?"

Same question. Only this time they're asking it not for the sake of your taste in film. But for your sanity. For those wondering where I fall in the ballpark, see the above paragraph for the answer. I guess it boils down to this: curiosity. Many of us, some to a small extent, others to a larger degree, have a fascination with the macabre. What drew me into these types of movies is that very thing. It's an andrenaline rush. Are they going to go that far? Oh yes, they just did. So as someone who had their fill of Romero zombie films, the best of Carpenter and all the other classics, I was ready for something different. Something that took horror to that next level. I had already seen tone and suspense mastered with Psycho & Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Now it was time to go to Italy and see what those fiendish filmmakers were up to.

There's always those first time viewings that get embedded into your memory. You never forget it. Cannibal Holocaust hit me like a Mac truck going 75 mph. The opening credits & Riz Ortolani's haunting score set everything up. Probably even more powerful than Ortolani's main theme is the piece of music played at one of the most infamous moments of the film. The girl on the pike. How the HELL did they pull that off? Having the knowledge of how Ruggero Deodato actually did it still can't diminsh the power of it. Cause a film like this, no matter how many times you see it, harks back to that first time sitting down in front of the TV. Popping it in the DVD player. Feeling like you just went to hell and back after those credits roll.

Cannibal Holocaust like many of my favorite movies is an experience. Horror just picks up the darker reflections of society anyway. This is one of those films that takes you the darkest recesses of mankind. Stares at you with unflinching malice and dares you to watch further. "You think you can handle this scene? Well wait till you see what's in store for you next."

It makes my top 100 because of that very reason. It's an experience. The kind that has been rarely equalled in horror & more importantly extreme horror.

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