Folks, in 2006 when all three of the original Star Wars flicks were released on Six DVDs with two versions of each film, hours of bonus features and a Best Buy Exclusive embossed tin box to keep them all pristine in, I'm pretty blinkin' sure I didn't spend $49.95. Scalps and The Slayer... come ON pilgrim.
However, one does what one must well over twenty years after many of these flicks were released, then banned. My huge Excel Spreadsheet tracking all my archeological digs to find all 74 flicks in one form or another has the list of the hardest to find flicks in Red. And this one was the reddest!
Terreur cannibale is a 1982 Spanish/French co-production that likely surprised noone when it found itself banned as a Video Nasty. In fact, considering its content, the only surprise would have been that Cannibal Terror (as it was known in England during the banning) ever got released in the first place.
I don't mean due to its revolting content that warranted censorship. Folks, I'm the captain of the good ship Free Speech! I'm talking about the fact that this film is crap on a stick. What isn't in any way surprising is that this flick was almost impossible for me to find. The VHS is never for sale on Ebay, the DVD (in PAL format, no less) is out of print and at the time of this writing, I don't see either Shriek Show or Anchor Bay chomping at the proverbial bit to release it. If there are more people than just me who even want this thing, then there aren't MANY more than just me who want this thing.
How'd I finally get it? I found a guy who owned the VHS copy and could burn it onto a DVD-R for me. Luckily, it cost me less than $49.95.
Man, what garbage. It's telling that even co-writer Jesus Franco had his name taken off of this one, leaving all the credit, or blame as the case may be, to Julio Pérez Tabernero and H.L. Rostaine. That, my friends, is saying something. Hell, not one, but two of the three directors, Olivier Mathot and Julio Pérez Tabernero, were left uncredited, allowing Alain Deruelle alone to take the wrap. That could be because Deruelle also had a cameo appearance in the film. Maybe he figured it was too late to try to deny his involvement anyway, so...
Well, here it is... a group of douche bags kidnap a little girl named... Laurence (Annabelle... who wouldn't let them use her last name) from her loving parents, Silvia Solar and Olivier Mathot (okay, okay, I retract the comment about Deruelle's cameo). They decide to hide out with a small family in a small town just outside of Cannibal Country.
Yeah, you know, those dangerous Cannibal Tribes you always hear about plaguing the Spanish Countryside. Man, if I had a nickel for every time somebody said "I'd sure love to take a plane to Spain and see the Rain on the Plain and all that, but those damned cannibals..."
Regardless, those bird's turd cannibals are there, we see. And apparently just up the road in the town they live near is a really swingin' hair salon. As the camera panned across these guys I saw well-sculpted sideburns, Greg Brady perms, short haircuts, mulletts, all kinds of bad late '70s, early '80s dos. I wonder how that must have gone... "Hey, thanks, this is a great haircut! Here's your tip: I WON'T EAT YOU! Ha Ha Ha! Aw, that one never gets old, does it Maurice? Haw Haw! Okay, I'll see you in five weeks, keep me on your callendar! Ha Ha! Oh, and give my love to Brenda! We'd love to have you two over some time for dinner! What's that? Oh... yeah, I forgot, you two don't eat human. Sorry! Awk-waaaaaaaaaard! Just drinks, then?"
And if there's any question to whether these goons are Cannibals, in spite of their varied and attractive haircuts, the directors and writers follow that steady and annoying motif of stuffing a really fake looking rubber body with butcher shop refuse like hearts, lungs, some spoiled guts maybe, and then cutting that fake body open so that it looks vaguely like innards. Usually this is surrounding some beautiful woman that the meat-filled dummy is doubling for. More often than not the actress, and her meat-bag alter-ego are topless, which further distracts (the producers hope) from the fact that they look nothing alike and that the rubber dummy doesn't look like anybody. Then, of course, the inevitable happens, as it does in all these flicks. Look, Franco, if I wanted to see a breast with a Knife in it, I would have become a Plastic Surgeon in LA! Leave the Boobies alone! Can't you think of anything better to do with them? Jerk!
Such is the norm, not only in this plodding film, but the Cannibal Exploitation genre in general. And it continues as one of the three idiot kidnappers decides to rape one of their generous hosts (Pamela Stanford's Manuela) after watching her bathe naked. Okay, look, she's hot and looks great naked, but dude, take her to dinner, buy her a drink. Fuck I hate you guys...
How stupid is this idiot anyway? He's got it made in the shade and might even get laid, but instead he kills the goose that lays the golden eggs and set about his task to bring about a revenge plot in the final act remeniscent of The Virgin Spring.
Before we even get that far, though, we've got to sit through lamely spliced in stock footage of so many varied film grades I can't imagine a blind guy would have thought these were from the same movie. That's almost as nauseating as the extended, drawn out Long Pig butchering scenes... and the bad dialogue... and the bad acting... and more.
Look, folks, one doesn't go into a film in the same genre as Cannibal Ferox, Eaten Alive, Cannibal Holocaust, Ultimo mondo cannibale and Mountain of the Cannibal God and expect a film on par with the great cinematic achievements of all time, but hell and damn, how about some redeeming qualities, kids? Maybe Pamela Stanford could have had her bathtub scene, and the bad guy could catch her and tie her up, but before he can do anything the Cannibals show up and eat him, and then the females of the tribe free her and she decides to dress like them and dance around and then they go off to better movies and hang out with Soledad and Margi and Maribel and Meg and then they decide to form a nudist colony together in a place where it never gets cold. See, isn't that better? I like my version. As for Cannibal Terror? It sucks. It gets a Dog!
Okay, finish your dinner and you can click here for more reviews.
Make sure you wash those hands.