Extreme Cinema

  1. Hexenkult
  2. Hexenkult

A list of movies from all genres featuring extreme/controversial content and/or taboo subject matter.

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  Hexenkult's Rating My Rating
The Act of Seeing with One's Own Eyes 1971,  Unrated)
Africa Addio (Adios Africa) (Africa Blood and Guts) 1966,  Unrated)
Aftermath 1994,  Unrated)
Akai misshitsu (heya): Kindan no ˘sama geemu (Red Room) 1999,  Unrated)
Alone with Her 2007,  Unrated)
American Psycho 2000,  R)
Anatomy of Hell 2003,  Unrated)
Angel Guts 2005,  Unrated)
Angst (Fear) 1983,  Unrated)
Audition (ďdishon) 1999,  R)
August Underground 2002,  Unrated)
August Underground's Mordum 2003,  Unrated)
August Underground's Penance 2007,  Unrated)
Bat sin fan dim ji yan yuk cha siu bau (The Eight Immortals Restaurant: The Untold Story) 1993,  Unrated)
The Baby of MÔcon 1993,  Unrated)
Bad Boy Bubby 1993,  Unrated)
Baise-Moi 2000,  Unrated)
Barbed Wire Dolls 1976,  Unrated)
Battle Royale 3D 2000,  Unrated)
Begotten 1991,  Unrated)
Benny's Video 1992,  Unrated)
Buio Omega (Beyond the Darkness) 1984,  Unrated)
Beyond the Limits 2003,  Unrated)
Blind Beast (M˘jű) 1969,  Unrated)
Blood Sucking Freaks (Bloodsucking Freaks) 1975,  R)
The Boxer's Omen (Mo) 1983,  R)
Boy Meets Girl 1994,  R)
Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia 1974,  R)
Calvaire (The Ordeal) 2004,  Unrated)
Cannibal 2008,  R)
Cannibal Ferox 1981,  R)
Cannibal Holocaust 1979,  NC-17)
Carne 1991,  Unrated)
C'est arrivÚ prŔs de chez vous (Man Bites Dog) (It Happened in Your Neighborhood) 1991,  NC-17)
C'est arrivÚ prŔs de chez vous (Man Bites Dog) (It Happened in Your Neighborhood)

MAN BITES DOG is a cinema verite-style mockumentary satire of the highest calibre. Sudden bursts of disturbing violence and sadistic brutality mesh with bleakly humorous moments of dark satire - all shot in stark black and white photography.

Made by Belgian filmmakers Remy Belvaux, Andre Bonzel, and Benoit Poelvoorde and released amid a storm of controversy as well as critical acclaim, MAN BITES DOG would go on to win the International Critics Prize at Cannes in 1992.

It's basically about a documentary crew making a film about the day-to-day life of a serial killer named Ben (played by Benoit Poelvoorde). Beneath the surface, it's a satire on media violence and the struggles of making a film with no money. But unlike Oliver Stone's satire on media violence, NATURAL BORN KILLERS, where the message was always "in your face", MAN BITES DOG's satire is subtle and just below the surface. I think it works better this way. Because the film is seen solely through the eye of the documentary camera, this makes the viewer feel like they're a part of the camera crew; and in the scenes of violence, brutality and murder it puts the viewer into the role of co-conspirator along with the rest of the documentary crew. Michael Haneke's 1997 film FUNNY GAMES plays with the viewer in a similar way, except in that film you feel more like a voyeur rather than conspirator. There's a point in MAN BITES DOG where the serial killer Ben becomes more than just the subject of the documentary. In essence he becomes the producer as well when the documentary crew accepts money from him in order to finish the film.

By this time the crew have ceased to be subjectively documenting Ben's actions and are now willing participants in his madness (as is the viewer). This brings to my mind the Italian mondo documentary films like AFRICA ADDIO, where the filmmakers were accused of staging certain atrocities for the benefit of the camera, rather than documenting natural events; which also brings to mind CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST with its cinema-verite film-within-a-film mocking the same Italian mondos. The ending of MAN BITES DOG is also remarkably similar to the way CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST ends. I also noticed a reference to A CLOCKWORK ORANGE during the disturbing home invasion/rape scene. Even with all these references, whether intentional or not, this is still an extremely original film which should be seen by all adventuresome viewers.
Charles Manson Superstar 1989,  Unrated)
Chinese Torture Chamber Story 1995,  Unrated)
Sympathy for Lady Vengeance 2005,  R)
Clean, Shaven 1993,  Unrated)
Clean, Shaven

A schizophrenic man, Peter Winter (a great performance by Peter Greene), is released from an institution and goes in search of his young daughter, Nicole. He returns home to find out his mother had put Nicole up for adoption. Another element of the story involves the murder of a young girl, whose body was discovered on the grounds of a hotel where Peter had stayed while making his way home. Detective McNally believes that Peter is responsible for the murder and is trying to track him down before he can reach Nicole.

Writer/director Lodge Kerrigan manages to create a very multi-layered story, full of paranoia, that compels the viewer to keep watching. Peter Greene's performance as a schizophrenic, plagued by hallucinations is ultimately realistic and believable. His hallucinations are not of the psychedelic visual kind, but rather auditory; and the subtle soundtrack as well as the sound design help convey the mood.

His schizophrenia and paranoia lead to acts of self-mutilation. As uncomfortable and jarring as these few scenes are, they never degenerate into gratuitous shock effect, but are a realistic portrayal of his way of releasing his fears and delusions. And every scene he's in is filled with paranoid tension, which forces the viewer to experience things the way Peter does.

This aspect of the film reminds me of Roman Polanski's 1965 classic, REPULSION. Tension is also created by the fact that the viewer is kept in the dark as to whether he murdered the young girl earlier in the film or not. So when he finally finds (and essentially abducts) his daughter, you don't know what the outcome may be.

This independent film is certainly unconventional and far removed from your average polished Hollywood production (thankfully), so don't expect a satisfying ending that answers all your questions. In the end, CLEAN, SHAVEN is an emotionally stirring character study of mental illness on par with the above-mentioned REPULSION and David Cronenberg's SPIDER.
Combat Shock 1985,  R)
Cutting Moments 1997,  Unrated)
Der Todesking (The Death King) 1990,  Unrated)
Descent 2007,  R)
Dirty Pretty Things 2003,  R)
Don't Go in the House 1980,  R)
Eaten Alive (Mangiati vivi!) 1980,  Unrated)
Edogawa ranpo taizen: Kyofu kikei ningen (Horrors of Malformed Men)(Horror of a Deformed Man) 1969,  Unrated)
Edogawa ranpo taizen: Kyofu kikei ningen (Horrors of Malformed Men)(Horror of a Deformed Man)
Here's a somewhat legendary Japanese cult film, that I've been wanting to see, ever since I read a review for it in Phil Hardy's "Encyclopedia of Horror" back in the late '80s. It was apparently banned in some countries, and it's still banned in its native Japan. Although, it is a bizarre ride and a bit disturbing, it's not overly gory. The reason for the ban in Japan is actually simpler than that; it's a matter of political correctness. The Japanese word for 'malformed' is considered extremely derogatory towards the handicapped. This, combined with the film's exploitative use of deformed human beings, is the reason for the ban. It's based on the stories of Edogawa Rampo (the Japanese answer to Edgar Allan Poe). The director, Teruo Ishii, originally started out adapting Rampo's "The Strange Tale of Panorama Island"; but fearing this would be the only chance he would get to direct a film using Rampo's work, he decided to add in bits from other Rampo stories like "Ogre of the Secluded Isle", "The Human Chair", "Walker in the Attic", and "The Twins". This of course makes the plot convoluted and has the effect of making the whole movie disjointed; but this only adds to the surrealistic dream-quality of the film, which actually edges into Jodorowsky territory in some scenes. I'm not going to get into the plot too deeply, because as I stated above it's just too much to try and unravel here. Here's the basics: Hitomi, a man seemingly suffering from amnesia, awakes to find himself trapped in a mental asylum (populated by crazed naked women no less). He tries to figure out why he's there, and he remembers something about an island, and a strange lullaby keeps running through his head. He's attacked by a bald man whom he manages to kill; and then he makes his escape by opening a window (apparently it's not a very secure asylum). Once outside he hears a female street performer humming the same strange lullaby which is familiar to him. He confronts the woman, and just as she's about to reveal the location of the island from his memory, she gets knifed in the back. Hitomi is framed for the murder and has to make an escape. While on a train he sees a picture of a recently deceased man named Genzaburo, that happens to look just like him. Hitomi assumes the dead man's identity, fooling Genzaburo's relatives by making them think his death was misdiagnosed (he even manages to get down and dirty with Genzaburo's wife and mistress). He learns that the island from his memory is just off the coast of Genzaburo's home. He also learns that Genzaburo's father, Jogoro, is living on the island and is trying to transform it into an 'ideal community'. Hitomi (still masquerading as Genzaburo) decides to take a trip to the island....and this is when the movie takes a trip into beloved lunacy. Jogoro's island is basically an extremely surreal and psychedelic version of the island of Dr. Moreau; and his 'ideal community' is populated by hybrid surgical experiments that have transformed people into the 'malformed men' of the title. OK, that's pretty much the basics of the plot, because there's plenty of craziness going on between the scenarios I described above; and I haven't even discussed the ending which is completely absurd (in that good kind of way that only the Japanese can seem to pull off). The crazed doctor, Jogoro, is played by Tatsumi Hijikata who is the founder of butoh (a type of performance-art dance). The director, Teruo Ishii, cast him in the role specifically for his butoh dance movements, which are pretty eerie when he's seen twisting and contorting his body crab-like across the rocky shore of the island. This mixed with Ishii's jump-cut editing of Hijikata's movements makes for a very memorable scene. I highly recommend this movie especially if you're into surrealistic films in the style of Alejandro Jodorowsky, or Edogawa Rampo adaptations like RAMPO NOIR and MOJU.
Entrails of the Beautiful Woman 1986,  Unrated)
Entrails of the Beautiful Woman

This is the sequel (in name only) to the infamous Japanese sex/gore film ENTRAILS OF A VIRGIN, by the same director, Kazuo 'Gaira' Komizu. Komizu also directed the third and final installment in the series in 1987, most commonly known as RUSTED BODY: GUTS OF A VIRGIN III. His only other directorial effort of note is the zombie film LIVING DEAD IN TOKYO BAY in 1993.

Now onto the story. A group of Yakuza gangsters rape a girl, Yoshimi, who's been searching for her sister. Her sister had ties to the Yakuza, and they tell her she was sold into prostitution in Africa. They then inject Yoshimi with a highly potent form of dope called "Angel Rain", and two more Yakuza thugs rape her.

She manages to escape and finds a hospital where she tells a nurse her story, before making her way to the hospital roof and jumping to her death. The nurse decides to avenge Yoshimi's death and infiltrates the Yakuza clan. She gets caught and, of course, gang-raped like Yoshimi. They inject her with a large dose of "Angel Rain", which kills her (or so they think). Instead it inexplicably turns her into a hulking, skinless beast with a giant mutant boner! Then she exacts her bloody revenge on the Yakuza members.

The ridiculous and thread-bare plotline is just an excuse to string together the various softcore scenes and, eventually, the gore. I say eventually, because it's 50 minutes into movie before the creature makes an appearance. The movie is only 68 minutes long. That's about 20 minutes worth of gory carnage. What a missed opportunity.

The creature reminds me of the skinless people in HELLRAISER, except for the giant phallus, which resembles the "chest-bursting" critter from ALIEN crossed with the writhing fly larvae in the dream sequence of Cronenberg's THE FLY. Sound disgusting? It is.

The last 20 minutes feature some decent gore FX and one memorably disgusting scene involving the creature's "appendage" and a sleazy Yakuza girl. Let's just say there's some disturbing foreplay before leading up to a stomach-bursting "climax" (a la ALIEN mentioned above).

That's pretty much it. If you've read this far, then you already know if this is the type of movie you want to see. It's a fun and mindless diversion for fans of gore, who don't mind softcore sex scenes; or for fans of softcore sex who don't mind gore scenes (whatever floats-your-boat). It could have been a lot better though if the creature had started his/her wrath of gory, mutant-phallus carnage earlier in the movie. Oh well. In the immortal words of Martin the caretaker in Friday the 13th Part VI, "Some folks sure got a strange idea of entertainment!".
Entrails of the Virgin 1986,  Unrated)
Faces of Death 1978,  Unrated)
Faces of Death II 1985,  PG)
Faces of Death III 1985,  Unrated)
Faces of Death IV 1990,  Unrated)
Female Yakuza Tale - Inquisition and Torture 2005,  Unrated)
Flower and Snake 2004,  Unrated)
Funny Games 1998,  Unrated)
Funny Games 2007,  R)
The Girl Next Door 2007,  R)
God's Lonely Man 1996,  NC-17)
The Great American Snuff Film 2003,  R)
Gvozdi (Nails) 2003,  Unrated)
Hei tai yang 731 (Men Behind the Sun) (Squadron 731) 1988,  Unrated)
Hei tai yang 731 xu ji zhi sha ren gong chang (Men Behind the Sun 2: Laboratory of the Devil) 1992,  Unrated)
Hei tai yang 731 si wang lie che (Men Behind the Sun 3: A Narrow Escape) 1994,  Unrated)
Hei tai yang: Nan Jing da tu sha (Men Behind The Sun 4) (Black Sun: The Nanking Massacre) 1995,  Unrated)
Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer 1986,  NC-17)
High Tension (Switchblade Romance) 2005,  R)
The Holy Mountain 1973,  R)
The House on the Edge of the Park ,  Unrated)
I Spit on Your Corpse, I Piss on Your Grave 2007,  Unrated)
I Spit on Your Grave (Day of the Woman) 1977,  R)
Seul Contre Tous (I Stand Alone) (One Against All) 1998,  Unrated)
Ice From the Sun 1999,  Unrated)
Koroshiya 1 (Ichi the Killer) 2001,  R)
Iki-jigoku (Living Hell) 2000,  R)
Inside (└ l'intÚrieur) 2007,  R)
Inside (└ l'intÚrieur)
Before I had heard anything about this French horror/thriller, I actually saw it sitting on the shelf of my local DVD outlet. I picked it up read the back and it seemed interesting; but it was released on the Dimension Extreme label here in the US, and their titles are pretty much hit or miss. I decided to wait. After having it recommended to me many times by various Flixter friends, I finally picked it up. I shouldn't have waited. Believe the hype! This movie delivers big time. If you're into splatter and gore (especially the realistic variety), then do not hesitate to get this movie. But it offers more than that. The story was very involving, the cinematography as well as the soundtrack was excellent, there was tension and suspense in some scenes, the actors performances ranged from adequate to excellent, and the ending didn't suck. The twist ending is nothing new to the horror/thriller genre, but ever since SAW was released outlandish twist endings have become de rigueur. And speaking of twist endings another French gore movie comes to mind - HIGH TENSION. I loved HIGH TENSION and I thought the ending was interesting, but it came so far out of leftfield that it became implausible and left lots of plot holes in the story. I'm thankful to say that INSIDE manages to avoid the outlandish twist ending clichÚ for the most part. A very astute viewer might be able to figure out where the ending is going, but I didn't see it coming; and when it did come it was believable enough. In closing, INSIDE is a very rewarding experience for jaded gorehounds (like myself) and for adventurous arthouse lovers (with strong stomachs).
Irreversible 2002,  Unrated)
Jungle Holocaust (Ultimo mondo cannibale) (Cannibal) (Carnivorous) (Last Cannibal World) 1977,  Unrated)
Ken Park 2002,  Unrated)
Kichiku dai enkai 1998,  Unrated)
Ky˘fu joshik˘k˘: b˘k˘ rinchi ky˘shitsu (Terrifying Girls' High School: Lynch Law Classroom) 1973,  Unrated)
Last House on Dead End Street 1977,  R)
Last House on Dead End Street
Roger Watkins as Terry Hawkins

Let me start off this review by saying this is a one of my personal favorites, and for those who seek it out based on my review (or any other positive reviews) may not see it in the same light. Despite the title, it's not a rip-off of Wes Craven's LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT, and I feel it's actually superior to Craven's movie. It's certainly more vicious and disturbing. The film begins with Terry Hawkins being released from prison after serving one year for selling drugs, and through his "inner monologue" we learn more about his pissed off and nihilistic view of society. "I'll show 'em. I'll show 'em all what Terry Hawkins can do!". And show them he will.

I'll show 'em all what Terry Hawkins can do!

He finds an abandoned building and decides to use it as his "production studio", exclaiming to the girl who's with him, "I wanna make some films here - some really weird films!". He meets up with a former "business associate", Ken, who has film equipment and has been making movies with a porno filmmaker named Palmer. We learn some of Ken's sordid past. He had worked in a slaughterhouse for a while; and we're shown some foreshadowing inserts of cow slaughter. Apparently Ken was a bad boy though, and he some time in an institution for porking dead cows, as he explains to Terry, "You know how horny you get? You'd stick it in a mud puddle if you could find one, but you can't find one in the middle of winter, you know." So Terry and Ken decide to partner up on these new films Terry plans to make.

Bill and Ken begin a most excellent adventure

Next Terry meets up with another former associate named Bill, who's a camera man. Terry uses his winning personality to convince Bill to join his entourage, "Now get all this crap together and be ready to go in an hour!". Now we move to a crazy little shindig being thrown at Palmer's house (the porno filmmaker I mentioned earlier). His wife Nancy is a kinky one and likes painting her face black prior to being whipped by a mentally handicapped hunchback, as the party guests laugh and cheer her on. An oddly surreal scene, no doubt.

Dwight Frye never got to do this!

Meanwhile, her husband and his producer, Steve, are in the study viewing Palmer's latest film, which the producer is not too impressed with, "Palmer, you sit here showing me 10th rate porn while your wife is in the next room getting her ass whipped, and you have the nerve to talk to me about your reputation?!". Steve then tells Palmer they should hook up with this guy Terry Hawkins, who's planning on doing some films no one's ever seen before. Now we cut to the chase. Terry's "new style of film" is snuff films. His crew wears these creepy, semi-transparent theater masks while he dons a huge Greek god-style mask, and they kill their victims on camera.

Dynasty (of death)

Steve, the producer, finds a lucrative underground market for the films, but makes the fatal mistake of cutting Terry out of the profits. Terry repays the favor by using Steve, Palmer, and Palmer's wife as "actors" in his final masterpiece. What follows is a gruesome, disturbing and often graphic account of their last moments caught on film.

Last House on Dead End Street (1972)

The foreshadowing slaughterhouse scene I mentioned earlier plays out here in the end, involving a branding iron, throat slashing, stabbing, mutilation, dismemberment, and disemboweling. In one sickeningly surreal scene of humiliation, Steve is forced to fellate a deer hoof, protruding from between the legs of one of Terry's female crew members, as another crew member holds two other hoofs up to the girl's head (as though they were devil horns).

Hoof-in-mouth humiliation

It's a bleak and nihilistic film with a suitably bleak ending, although there's some tacked on narration stating that Terry Hawkins and the other members were later apprehended and are serving time in prison. This narration was never part of the original film and was probably added by or at the request of a distributor who thought audiences couldn't handle such a bleak ending without some form of punishment for those involved.

Last House on Dead End Street (1972)

I remember first reading about this film in some article by Chas Balun, either in Gorezone or Deep Red, back in the late '80s. It was originally distributed on VHS by Sun Video in small quantities. I was actually lucky enough to have found a rental copy back then and dub it. It seemed like such a dangerous film made by reckless filmmakers who just didn't give a damn about playing by the rules. To add to the film's notoriety, all the people involved were hiding behind pseudonyms. It was later revealed that the writer and director of the film was a New York resident named Roger Watkins, who also played the role of lead maniac Terry Hawkins. His main influence for the story was Charles Manson and his followers and the rumor (now an urban legend) that the Manson family had made some snuff films.

Terry's Family

He and a dedicated group of theater and film school friends shot it back in 1972 (while he was in a meth-fueled haze, according to Watkins). The original title was THE CUKOO CLOCKS OF HELL, a reference from Kurt Vonnegut's novel Mother Night (which has nothing to do with the film, by the way). The running time of this original print clocked in at nearly 3 hours. At some point it was cut down to the lean and mean 80 minute version that exists now. Unfortunately, the original 3 hour print has been lost, and all that remains of it is about 20 minutes of silent footage, included on the Barrel Entertainment DVD. Hopefully this print will resurface one day, because I would sure love to see it. In 1977 it was retitled THE FUNHOUSE, and it made the rounds through the grindhouse and drive-in circuit. It was later retitled LAST HOUSE ON DEAD END STREET and raked in more money at the grindhouses by using an ad campaign that cashed in on the success of Wes Craven's LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT - "It's Back! The Evil That Had You Screaming...It's Only A Movie!".

Last House on Dead End Street (1972)

It also played on some double bills with Craven's THE HILLS HAVE EYES. The movie was shot on 16mm film which gives it that grainy and gritty documentary-like feel that is perfectly suited to films dealing with this subject matter. It was also shot without sound, with the dialogue, sound effects, and music dubbed in later. This can usually hurt a film, but here it gives it a disjointed feeling. That, combined with the minimal synthesized soundtrack and the looping and echoing of various dialogue, add to the unsettling effect of the film. It's like the visual equivalent of listening to Nurse With Wound, Coil, or some other early industrial artist. One aspect I love about this movie, and other ultra-low budget DIY movies like it, is that it's a big defiant "middle finger" in the face of the money-hungry Hollywood studio system. This subtext is actually in the film itself, with Steve and Palmer representing the Hollywood studio system, out to make a buck by feeding the masses what they want to see. But their product has become boring and trite, and they're losing money. In comes Terry Hawkins, an underground independent filmmaker with a vision to give people something they've never seen before. Of course, "Hollywood" rips off his product, puts their own name on it and run with it, cutting the independent filmmaker out of the picture all together. The only difference here is that "Hollywood" pays the ultimate price in the end.

Die Hollywood, Die!

If you're a fan of hardcore horror and exploitation films you should track down a copy of LHODES. The folks at Barrel Entertainment released a definitive 2-disc DVD set back in 2002. I think it's out-of-print now, but it's definitely worth seeking out. It still packs a punch today. For better or worse, this movie along with Michael and Roberta Findlay's inferior film SNUFF, gave rise to the whole pseudo-snuff genre; and are the predecessors to the Japanese GUINEA PIG series films DEVIL'S EXPERIMENT and FLOWER OF FLESH AND BLOOD, as well as the AUGUST UNDERGROUND films. Roger Watkins died in 2007. Prior to his death, he had written a sequel to LHODES and was set to direct it, with the help of Fred Vogel's Toe Tag Pictures (the guys behind the AUGUST UNDERGROUND films). The last I heard, Toe Tag still owns the screenplay and may eventually shoot it.

Last House on Dead End Street (1972)
The Last House on the Left 1972,  R)
The Living and the Dead 2007,  Unrated)
Maniac! 1980,  R)
The Manson Family 2004,  R)
Manson Family Movies 1984,  Unrated)
Murder-Set-Pieces 2004,  R)
Muzan-e: AV gyaru satsujin bideo wa sonzai shita! 1999,  Unrated)
My Sweet Satan 1994,  Unrated)
My Sweet Satan

MY SWEET SATAN is an excellent 20 minute short film made in 1993 by Ohio-based independent filmmaker Jim Van Bebber. Van Bebber made his feature film debut in 1988 with the gritty urban action/exploitation movie DEADBEAT AT DAWN. My Sweet Satan is based on the true story of Ricky Kasso, also known as "The Acid King", who was a member of a satanic cult of metalheads known as the "Knights of the Black Circle".

They apparently held one of their rituals on the site of the actual Amityville Horror house. In 1984 Kasso and one of his friends were arrested for the prolonged torture and murder of Gary Lauwers, who had stolen 10 bags of angel dust from Kasso while he was passed out at a party. Two days after his arrest Kasso commited suicide by hanging himself in his cell.

In MY SWEET SATAN Van Bebber stars as Ricky Kasslin (I assume the name was modified due to legal issues); and like his anti-hero character Goose in DEADBEAT AT DAWN Van Bebber really has a commanding and charismatic screen presence.

The film starts off with Kasslin hanging himself in his prison cell, then the story flashes back to the days leading up to his imprisonment. I like the scene near the beginning where an American flag mural on a wall fills the screen as Kasslin walks up and into frame like General Patton about to address his troops. Except Kasslin's "troops" are a group of outcast teens who hang out with him because he has great drugs and they have nothing else better to do. Kasslin and his pals spend their days out in the woods sacrificing animals to Satan, headbanging to metal, drinking, and smoking weed (while proclaiming, "We smoke this marijuana in your name Satan"). At a party one night Gary (Mike Moore) steals $96 out of Kasslin's pocket when he thought Kasslin was passed out. As a result, Kasslin and his best friend Jimmy (Terek Puckett) set Garry up by offering him free hits of acid and taking him into the woods where they brutally murder him as a sacrifice to Satan. Then the film leaps back to Kasslin hanging himself in his cell. I usually don't give away the conclusion of a film in my reviews, but this is a short film which is not about a twist ending or anything like that. You can tell where the film's headed right from the start; and it's told in a semi-documentary fashion where Kasslin's friends are narrating the events after-the-fact. This style of semi-documentary storytelling would be put to effective use in Van Bebber's excellent second feature film THE MANSON FAMILY (which I highly recommend). The Director of Photography on MY SWEET SATAN was Mike King who was also the DP on DEADBEAT AT DAWN. Both films were shot on 16mm, but where as DEADBEAT AT DAWN had a dirty gritty print due to the fact that they were going for a '70s grindhouse/exploitation look, MY SWEET SATAN has a clear clean print (which suits the straightforward semi-documentary aspect of the film). As far as the shock-factor, there's an actual (male) nipple piercing performed at one of the parties. Whether this is shocking to you or not depends on whether you find body piercing shocking. I have piercings and I've seen enough that it doesn't shock me in real life; but there's something about seeing it on film in extreme close-up that's still cringe-worthy. And the murder of Gary is brutal, disturbing, and gory all at the same time (so splatter fans take note). The chilling aspect of the murder will linger with you long after the film's over. Thanks to Flixter friend creepfreak for pointing out a movie called RICKY 6, which is also based on the Ricky Kasso story.
Nekromantik 1988,  Unrated)
Nekromantik 2 1991,  Unrated)
Nekeddo burÔddo: Megyaku (Splatter: Naked Blood) 1996,  Unrated)
Lo Squartatore di New York (The New York Ripper) 1982,  Unrated)
Nu ji zhong ying (Bamboo House of Dolls) 1974,  Unrated)
O Fantasma 2000,  Unrated)
Oldboy ,  R)
Organ 1965,  Unrated)
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer 2006,  R)
The Piano Teacher (La Pianiste) 2001,  R)
Pink Flamingos 1972,  NC-17)
Premutos - Lord of the Living Dead 1999,  Unrated)
Rampo Noir (Rampo jigoku) 2005,  Unrated)
Rampo Noir (Rampo jigoku)
Great Japanese film, based on the macabre short stories of Edogawa Rampo (known as the Japanese Edgar Allan Poe). It's an anthology consisting of 4 segments. The first segment is "Kasei no Unga (Mars Canal)" and it's only about 7 minutes long; but it's a very surreal 7 minutes and a nice way to open the anthology. A naked man (Tadanobu Asano) staggers along a bleak landscape and comes upon a pool of water where he sees the reflection of a woman (and I'll leave it there because this is really a conceptual piece left up to the individual viewer's interpretation). This segment makes great use of sound and the absence of sound. Up next is "Kagami Jigoku (Mirror Hell)" and it definitely brings the noir mystery element (as well as some S&M kinkiness). Private detective Kogoro Akechi (played by Tadanobu Asano), investigates a series of deaths where the victims faces have been melted, their skulls charred, and a handheld mirror found at the scene of each crime. It features a wonderfully kinky erotic scene involving rope and candle wax. The third segment, "Imomushi (Caterpillar)", is my favorite and the most disturbing; directed by the wonderfully demented Hisayasu Sato (Splatter:Naked Blood). A soldier returns home from war but without his arms and legs. He has also lost the ability to hear or speak. His wife takes care of him, but her "care" soon turns to torture and sadism. Private detective Kogoro Akechi (Tadanobu Asano) turns up again. Kogoro Akechi is a recurring character in Rampo's works (much like the character of Dupin in Poe's stories). This segment reminds me of a much more disturbing and sadistic version of BOXING HELENA. The fourth and final segment is "Mushi (Crawling Bugs)", and it's basically a surreal and melancholic tale of obsessive love (with some perverse twists of course). It also features some beautiful cinematography. Tadanobu Asano stars again as a limo driver for a stage actress, whom he's secretly in love with. She doesn't share this love, however, and he finds a way to (shall we say) remedy the situation.
Requiem for a Dream 2000,  R)
Salo (Sal˛ o le 120 giornate di Sodoma) 1975,  NC-17)
Santa sangre (Holy Blood) 1989,  R)
Schramm: Into the Mind of a Serial Killer 1994,  Unrated)
Scrapbook 1999,  Unrated)
The Secret Life: Jeffrey Dahmer 1992,  Unrated)
The Seventh Continent (Der Siebente Kontinent) 1989,  NC-17)
71 Fragmente einer Chronologie des Zufalls (71 Fragments of a Chronology of Chance) 1994,  Unrated)
Sex & Fury 1973,  R)
She sha shou (The Killer Snakes) (Killer Snakes... The Hiss of Death) 1974,  Unrated)
Shinjuku Triad Society (Shinjuku kuroshakai: Chaina mafia sens˘) 1995,  Unrated)
Sh˘jo jigoku ichi kyű kyű kyű (Girl Hell 1999) 1999,  Unrated)
Singapore sling: O anthropos pou agapise ena ptoma 1990,  Unrated)
Slaughtered Vomit Dolls 2006,  Unrated)
Snuff (American Cannibale) 1976,  R)
Snuff-Movie (Man with a Movie Camera) 2012,  Unrated)
Subconscious Cruelty 1999,  Unrated)
Suicide Club 2002,  R)
Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance (Boksuneun naui geot) 2002,  R)
Tokugawa Irezumi-shi: Seme Jigoku (Inferno of Torture) (Hell's Tattooers) 1969,  Unrated)
El Topo 1971,  Unrated)
Uzumaki 2000,  G)
Visitor Q (BijitÔ Q) 2001,  R)
Yi boh laai beng duk (Ebola Syndrome) 1996,  Unrated)
Za ginipiggu: Akuma no jikken (Guinea Pig: Devil's Experiment) 1985,  NC-17)
Za ginipiggu 2: Chiniku no hana (Guinea Pig 2: Flowers of Flesh and Blood) 1985,  Unrated)
Za ginipiggu 2: Chiniku no hana (Guinea Pig 2: Flowers of Flesh and Blood)
Guinea Pig: Flower of Flesh and Blood (1985)

For fans of underground horror, this film needs no introduction. It's one of those (un)holy grail movies for gorehounds that's usually perched near the top of any extreme horror list along with CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST, MEN BEHIND THE SUN, and more recently the AUGUST UNDERGROUND films. And like those films, it has a polarizing effect among even diehard horror fans. It usually divides viewers into those who see (and enjoy) the film as pure shock value entertainment with over-the-top gore FX; and those who see it as pure exploitative garbage appealing only to "sickos" of the lowest common denominator. I happen to fall into the former group, and I have no problem defending the merits of extreme cinema (as anyone who's read my reviews already knows). Then again, I've always admired movies and filmmakers that go beyond the pale of good taste, that try to shock and shake the foundations of the viewers sensibilities, even if that means inspiring as much disgust and revulsion in the viewer as possible.

Guinea Pig: Flower of Flesh and Blood (1985)

If these types of films offend you, or if you just like horror movies that "play it safe", then you should probably stop right here because this is the kind of film that throws down the gauntlet, so to speak. It delivers a cinematic sucker-punch to the gut and dares you to keep watching.

Guinea Pig: Flower of Flesh and Blood (1985)

There is no real plot to speak of in this movie. One night a man chases, chloroforms and abducts a girl off the street in Japan and binds her to a bed in his blood-stained "slaughter room".

Guinea Pig: Flower of Flesh and Blood (1985)

He proceeds to drug her, and while donning a Samurai helmet, systematically tortures, dismembers, disembowels and finally decapitates her, all in full gory detail and using a variety of sharp instruments.

Guinea Pig: Flower of Flesh and Blood (1985)

In between the butchery he delivers some poetic dialogue likening the spurting blood and grue to the blossoming of flowers (hence the title of the film). So basically, it's a pseudo-snuff film. And for those who don't know, the GUINEA PIG films were a series of shot-on-video mini-movies (about 40 to 60 minutes in length), produced in Japan in the mid to late '80s, directed by various Japanese filmmakers, and aimed squarely at the burgeoning home video market. FLOWER OF FLESH AND BLOOD is the second in the series, following the similarly-themed and equally grotesque DEVIL'S EXPERIMENT; and it was written and directed by famed manga artist Hideshi Hino.

Hideshi Hino

The fourth installment in the series, MERMAID IN A MANHOLE, was also written and directed by Hino, and it also features plenty of the "red stuff". For MERMAID, Hino drops the pseudo-snuff angle and goes for a story that resembles the dark visions of his manga books like Panorama of Hell and The Bug Boy.

Panorama of Hell by Hideshi Hino

The Guinea Pig films were never officially released on video in many countries, including the US; and were distributed via underground VHS bootlegs, which is how I first came across it. And let me tell you, watching FLOWER OF FLESH AND BLOOD on a 5th or 6th generation VHS bootleg is a much more disturbing (and realistic) experience than watching the remastered version on the Unearthed Films DVD. Not to mention that the old VHS bootleg had no credit sequence or dialogue, which added to its mystery and notoriety. I have to give props to Unearthed Films for releasing the GUINEA PIG series in the first place, but also for including a VHS bootleg version of the film as a hidden "easter egg" on the DVD.

Guinea Pig: Flower of Flesh and Blood (1985)

There are a few interesting stories surrounding FLOWER OF FLESH AND BLOOD. One is the legend that it's based on an actual snuff case. This story was most likely concocted by someone involved with the film (probably for added shock effect), who claimed that the director received a parcel in the mail containing one 8mm film reel, some still photographs and a letter all detailing the ritualized dismemberment and slaughter of an unidentified girl, which they handed over to the authorities (after viewing it of course). They insinuated that the case had to be kept quiet so as not to cause a public outcry, because the killer was never caught. And FLOWER OF FLESH AND BLOOD was supposedly a recreation of the 8mm snuff film. This is highly unlikely. I don't care how "quiet" the case was kept, some information and details of it would have leaked out if it were real. This legend, of course, just boosts the notoriety of the film and has the same effect that the narration at the beginning of TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE had about it being "...an account of the tragedy that befell a group of five youths...The events of that day were to lead to the discovery of one of the most bizarre crimes in the annals of American history." And to this day you'll find people who swear up and down that TEXAS CHAINSAW happened exactly as the events portrayed in the film (rather than being very loosely based on Wisconsin's favorite ghoul, Ed Gein). Another story about FLOWER OF FLESH AND BLOOD happens to be true. Noted genre journalist, author, and all around horror guru Chas Balun had acquired a copy of the film, and at the request of a staff member on Chas' Deep Red magazine, he edited together the goriest bits of FLOWER with a slew of gory scenes from other horror films, to be played at the staff members' birthday party.

Chas Balun

Within no time, the tape had been bootlegged and distributed all over the West Coast. At some point, Charlie Sheen saw a copy of this tape and believing it to be an actual snuff film, he reported it to the FBI. The GUINEA PIG films had already been under investigation in Japan and were, of course, determined to be fake. Another more horrifying story involves the Japanese serial killer Tsutomu Miyazaki, dubbed "The Otaku Murderer", who killed four girls between the ages of 4 and 7 in 1988/89.

Tsutomu Miyazaki (The Otaku Murderer)

The atrocities he inflicted on the bodies included mutilation, necrophilia and cannibalism. When the authorities searched his home they discovered a collection of nearly 6,000 pornographic and/or violent videos (including the GUINEA PIG films and videotape footage of some of his victims corpses). He supposedly re-enacted some of the scenes from FLOWER OF FLESH AND BLOOD on one of his victims. That brings to a close the sordid legacy behind one of the most notorious gore shockers ever made.

Guinea Pig: Flower of Flesh and Blood (1985)
Za ginipiggu 3: Senritsu! Shinanai otoko (Guinea Pig 3: He Never Dies) 1986,  Unrated)
Za ginipiggu 4: Manhoru no naka no ningyo (Guinea Pig 4: Mermaid in the Manhole) 1988,  Unrated)
Za ginipiggu 5: Notorudamu no andoroido (Guinea Pig 5: Android of Notre Dame) 1988,  Unrated)
Za ginipiggu 6: Peter no akuma no joi-san (Guinea Pig 6: Peter's Devil Woman Doctor) 1990,  Unrated)
Zombie Doom 1999,  Unrated)
Caligula - La Storia Mai Raccontata 1982,  Unrated)
In a Glass Cage (Tras el cristal) 1985,  Unrated)
Rohtenburg (Grimm Love) 2007,  Unrated)
Sweet Movie 1974,  Unrated)
Philosophy of a Knife 2008,  Unrated)
Philosophy of a Knife

I've been anticipating this film ever since it began production over 4 years ago. This is underground Russisan filmmaker Andrey Iskanov's 4 hour epic documentary/drama/horror movie based on the atrocities perpetrated by the Japanese military Unit 731 on Chinese prisoners in WWII. Unit 731 was a covert biological and chemical warfare research division. Those into extreme horror/exploitation cinema will of course know that Unit 731 also provided the basis for T.F. Mou's 1988 Chinese sickie MEN BEHIND THE SUN and it's sequels.

Apparently Iskanov was arrested and detained for a while by Russian authorities due to the film. Here's a press release from DVD distributor Unearthed films:
"Russian Horror Director Andrey Iskanov Detained for 5 Days by FSB (formally known as the KGB) On June 10th in Khabarovsk, Andrey Iskanov, director of the soon to be released film Philosophy of a Knife, was visited by the Russian Federal Security Service. According to Mr. Iskanov, he was questioned about the research he had conducted into the historical chemical and biological experiments that form the basis for the film, and the whereabouts of the documents and materials he had uncovered on the subject. Iskanov explained that many of the materials had been sent to the USA with the exception of those being utilized in his new film The Tourist. At the request of the security services, he surrendered what materials he had and the FSB left. On the following day, the FSB returned to Mr. Iskanov?s residence and proceeded to conduct a search of his property. They confiscated all film, video and computer materials, and Iskanov was arrested and taken to the local military base for questioning. While in detention, he was interrogated about the information he had acquired from Anatoly Protosov, a former military translator for the USSR, and his research into the Russian chemical and biological experiments that had been conducted in the area, as well as the American experiments that had taken place based on information culled from Unit 731 after the trials in Khabarrovsk. Iskanov explained that his research had led him only up to 1956 and no further, especially in regards to the Russian experiments. He was detained for 5 days in the military base in a concrete cell without a bathroom and with very little to eat. After the FSB had examined all of his media and other materials, they had Iskanov sign a consent form for the search and seizure of his materials. He was given back some of his property after being released. It is not unusual for independent filmmakers to be subjected to a certain amount of harassment, but this certainly seems to be an extreme case. Philosophy of a Knife is more than just a glance at a moment in history that most would rather forget; it is a graphic and detailed account of atrocities committed by government scientists and doctors on innocent civilians. It is because of the work of artists like Andrey Iskanov that such acts are not forgotten, however awful the truth may be."
Amateur Porn Star Killer 2007,  Unrated)
Amateur Porn Star Killer 2 2008,  Unrated)
The Severed Head Network 2 2002,  Unrated)
Severed Head Network 2000,  Unrated)
China White Serpentine 2003,  Unrated)
School of the Holy Beast 1974,  Unrated)
Chaos 2005,  R)
Defenceless: A Blood Symphony 2006,  Unrated)
Fight for Your Life 1977,  R)
Lucker (Lucker the Necrophagous) 1986,  Unrated)
Lucker (Lucker the Necrophagous)
Let me start this review off by saying this is a movie most people have never heard of, even many horror fans. Those who have heard of it know it's reputation as "sicko-sinema" sleaze; and for those few who've actually seen it - you either love it or hate it. If Synapse Films hadn't released the DVD, it would have just languished in the obscurity of underground horror bootleggers (where it originally built its infamous reputation and gained its cult status). LUCKER is an ultra-low budget film shot for about $30,000 in Belgium back in 1985 by Johan Vandewoestijne. He was a film student at the time, and the movie definitely reflects that - with all the flaws that come with a first-time film. Nick Van Suyt's performance as John Lucker is effectively creepy and noteworthy. Suyt apparently committed suicide.

Nick Van Suyt (as John Lucker)

The story begins with serial rapist, murderer, and necrophile John Lucker recovering in a clinic, after a suicide attempt. He's been locked up in an institute for the past 3 years, following the murder of 8 women. He escapes after the gory killing of a male orderly (screwdriver in the eyeball).

Lucker (1986)

Lucker kills a nurse inside her car in the clinic parking lot and makes his escape with her car (and her body). After desecrating her, he abandons the car and the body and walks into the city, where he begins searching for Cathy Jordan - one of his would-be victims who managed to escape his murderous rampage 3 years prior.

Helga Vandevelde (as Cathy Jordan)

Mayhem, gory murders and necrophilia ensues. That's pretty much all there is to the plot. And when I say necrophilia, I don't mean freshly dead. Lucker prefers a decomposed, putrefying corpse (in the movie's most infamous scene).

Finger Lickin' Good!

This, of course, draws comparison with Jorg Buttgereit's NEKROMANTIK films and Nacho Cerda's AFTERMATH; but LUCKER (which preceded them) drops the art-house style employed in those movies in favor of a gritty vision inside the mind of a disturbed psychopath, in which necrophilia is just one of his sordid pasttimes (but it's certainly the one you'll remember most when the film ends). It's a shame though, if the story had been fleshed out more and the filmmakers had some more money to work with, LUCKER could have been a powerful character study like HENRY: PORTAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER. But I still find it enjoyable for what it is. As for the production aspect, it was shot on 16mm. The "look" of the movie brings to mind filmmakers like Jim Van Bebber. I really like the soundtrack. It's synth-driven like many '80s horror films, and adds to the ambience. The incidental music is also enjoyable like the synth-pop song playing in the bar scene and the electro-industrial track "Vengeance" by the Belgian duo A Split Second. The lighting is also of note, with many of the key scenes lit in bright primary colors - reds, blues, and greens; which again brings to mind Jim Van Bebber and his lighting scheme for DEADBEAT AT DAWN. Of course, this lighting style has been used since the early days of color horror films by directors like Mario Bava, Terence Fisher, and Roger Corman when they wanted to give a scene a surreal dreamlike quality; and it works to that effect here (somewhat).

Lucker (1986)

LUCKER is not a dialog-driven film, and it's these scenes without dialog that work best. The English dubbing (or overdubbing) cheapens the film some and adds a bit of unintentional humor (also part of the film's cult appeal), but if you're used to low budget '80s horror it shouldn't really be a problem anyway.

Lucker VHS boxart

LUCKER originally had spotty distribution on VHS in 1986. However, the film found its target audience (avid gorehounds) when it was bootlegged by underground horror distributors in the late '80s and early '90s. I originally discovered it through the video maniacs at the now-defunct Ultra-Violent Video, which later became Blackest Heart Media (for those who remember the-good-old-days of horror collecting and tape trading, when finding these types of films was more difficult, mysterious and taboo). Now, thanks to Synapse Films, you can walk into your local media store and pick up LUCKER. Speaking of the DVD, I was pleasntly surprised to find the addition of more gore in some of the scenes, which was not on the old VHS bootleg. The original VHS version is also included as a bonus feature. The only other bonus is an informative featurette entitled Lucker: The Story Beyond the Film. So, if you enjoy (or like having your senses battered by) films such as Jim Van Bebber's ROADKILL: THE LAST DAYS OF JOHN MARTIN, William Lustig's MANIAC, HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER, and the above-mentioned NEKROMANTIK, then you may want to add LUCKER to your collection. It's not quite in the same league as those films, but it's similar in tone, and should appease those who have a rabid craving for cheap and tasteless cinema extremes; and if you're a gorehound who can appreciate ultra-low budget filmmaking on the cheap with no redeeming social value whatsoever.
A Certain Kind of Death 2002,  Unrated)
Screwed (Neji-shiki) 1999,  Unrated)
Hated: G.G. Allin and the Murder Junkies 1993,  Unrated)
Sick: The Life and Death of Bob Flanagan, Supermasochist 1997,  Unrated)
Kill The Artist 2007,  Unrated)
Arakimentari 2003,  Unrated)
The Burning Moon 1992,  Unrated)
L' ┬ge d'Or (Age of Gold) (The Golden Age) 1930,  Unrated)
Inhumanities 1989,  Unrated)
Caligula 1979,  R)
A Zed and Two Noughts 1985,  R)
Okasareta hakui (Violated Angels) (Violated Women in White) 1967,  Unrated)
Go, Go, Second Time Virgin (Yuke yuke nidome no shojo) 2000,  Unrated)
Gewalt! Gewalt: shojo geba-geba (Violent Virgin) 1969,  Unrated)
The Notorious Concubines 1969,  R)
Mizu no nai puuru (A Pool Without Water) 1982,  Unrated)
Ecstasy of the Angels (Tenshi no k˘kotsu) 1972,  Unrated)
Seizoku (Sex Jack) 1970,  Unrated)
Shinjuku Mad (Shinjuku maddo) 1970,  Unrated)
Taiji ga mitsuryosuru toki (The Embryo Hunts in Secret) 1967,  Unrated)
Nutbag 2000,  NC-17)
Love - Zero = Infinity 1994,  Unrated)
Survey Map of a Paradise Lost (Hard focus: nusumi-giki) 1988,  Unrated)
Faces of Gore 1972,  Unrated)
Faces of Gore 2 1970,  Unrated)
Bizarre Lust of a Sexual Deviant 2001,  NC-17)
Shin akai misshitsu (heya): Kowareta ningy˘-tachi (Red Room 2) 2000,  Unrated)
Senketsu no kizuna: Kichiku reipuhan o shinkan saseta shimai (Blood Sisters) 2000,  Unrated)
Brutes and Savages 1977,  Unrated)
Tokyo Elegy 1999,  Unrated)
Snuff 102 2007,  Unrated)
Snuff: A Documentary About Killing on Camera 2008,  PG)

Comments (9)

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  1. cacutshaw
    cacutshaw posted 6 years ago

    Great list. Thanks for bringing a couple films I never knew about to light.

  2. reverendbizarre
    reverendbizarre posted 6 years ago

    Excellent list. Here are a couple more recommendations:
    Requiem for a Dream, Perfume the Story of a Murderer.

  3. Stinger839
    Stinger839 posted 5 years ago

    got some suggestions:
    -The other two of Chan-Wook Park vengeance trilogy: "Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance" and"Lady Vengeance"
    -Pink Flamingos
    -O Fantasma
    -Descent (2007) not the cave movie
    -Dirty Pretty Things
    -The Faces of Death movies

    hit me back and tell me if you think any of those fit your idea for this list, which is a great damn list by the way!

  4. swansong4araven
    swansong4araven posted 5 years ago

    I WANT.

    I have seen most, but I need to have quite a few of these added to my collection. Once again you have great taste.


  5. iansubordinate
    iansubordinate posted 5 years ago

    Best list I have seen so far. I definatly downloaded like 8 of these movies tonight and i wanna buy Tenement.

  6. facemeltingshredder
    facemeltingshredder posted 4 years ago

    Great list dude.

    Will look up to those films.

  7. oscar284
    oscar284 posted 4 years ago

    check these too:

    an absolutely excellent list. nice1. just bought 4 that I've not yet seen on ebay.


  8. oscar284
    oscar284 posted 4 years ago

    oh yea, check out 'Martyrs'

  9. MojoTheCritic
    MojoTheCritic posted 3 years ago

    Outstanding list!