Sunday, October 3, 2010

Film Yap: The Human Centipede

The Human Centipede is the most talked about horror film of the year, but will be one of the most underseen ones as well. Why will more people see Devil over this? For this film is extremely disgusting. The title is referencing the idea of surgically connecting three people from mouth to anus to create a string of people…like a centipede.

At this point, if you are an American tourist in a horror film just avoid traveling in Europe. It will never turn out well. Writer/director Tom Six introduces the film in a typical fashion. Two young female Americans become lost and wind up at an evil German doctor’s house. Things are suspicious, drinks are drugged, escape is impossible, yadda yadda yadda.

Then the centipede is created and it’s nauseating. Then it’s just static. The movie is the definition of a one-trick pony. The unique form of torture is worth noting, but nothing is done with it. Just like Toy Story wasn’t just about hanging around in Andy’s room observing how toys operate; there was an actual plot involved with Woody and Buzz coming to terms. This film is missing the plot.

Even though the rest of the film isn’t very inventive, there are still some elements that work. Six knows how to work the horror film grammar. There are plenty of interesting shots and creepy sequences. There is a pool scene that is more positively memorable than any of the gross-out scenes with the “centipede.”

The only other thing that works is the insane performance of Dieter Laser as the evil doctor. He is a captivating villain who perfectly overacts without becoming cartoonish. Even though the third act has been overdone a million times, it is watchable because it’s fun watching this guy scream and act like a crazy person.

Once you have mentally accepted the grossness of the human centipede—it takes awhile—there is nothing else to latch onto. How can a film with such a scarring premise be so forgettable? Apparently Six is at work at a sequel to this film where he will unveil “the full sequence” which will consist of twelve people attached. So look forward to even more scenes of people awkwardly walking and trying to scream. Can’t wait.

The DVD includes a fly-on-the-wall making of documentary consisting of footage from behind the scenes. Only two of the ten minutes consist of the formed centipede, which is way more interesting of a topic than people just sitting around. There is also a silly interview with Six, an odd Folley session, and awkward audition tapes for the two actresses. Like the rest of the film, the bonus features aren’t good but still bizarrely watchable.

Film: 2.5 Yaps

Extras: 3 Yaps

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