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John’s Horror Corner: I Spit on Your Grave 2 (2013), a revenge movie that is NOT for the feint

October 2, 2013

MY CALL:  This is an EXTREMELY graphic, violent and brutal rape-torture-revenge movie.  That should be all you need to know to decide if this movie is for you or not.  MOVIES LIKE I Spit on Your Grave 2I Spit on Your Grave (1978 original & 2010 remake), The Last House on the Left (1972 original & 2009 remake), and Martyrs (2008) or Deadgirl (2008) have their own approaches.

So, this is a “sequel” but it has nothing to do with the characters from the 2010 remake.  This is simply another extremely unfortunate incident that plagues another young woman.

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Meet Katie, a naïve mid-western girl trying to make it in NYC as a model.  What could possibly go wrong?  And how on Earth can she afford a one bedroom place on her own in NYC that isn’t condemned!?!

Katie (newcomer Jemma Dallender) is trying to make it as a model in NYC but she’s not willing to go as far as her eastern European photographers advise.  When she decides to part ways with these shady photographers, one of them isn’t ready to let go and takes an unhealthy interest in her.

Director Steven R. Monroe (I Spit on Your Grave) is by no means new to this type of movie, having helmed the 2010 remake.  We meet unsettling people who readily cross lines and soullessly afflict the innocent with suffering under helpless circumstances.  You watch and you feel frozen, numb, appalled…you try to imagine the horror but quickly realize you couldn’t possibly.  Here, you may be telling yourself “it’s probably not so intense. I’ve seen rape scenes in movies before.”  Well, here a young girl is raped in front of a young man who is bleeding to death only feet away from her; the young man being her neighbor with whom she had exchanged playful invited flirtations and he was stabbed when rushing to her screaming aid only to look her in the eyes as she was violated and his blood drained from his cold body.  Not your average rape scene.

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After the murder-rape, the rapist calls his sociopathic colleagues to help clean up his mess.  They drug her and take her far from home (in Bulgaria!!!!!) where she’s kept as a sex slave.  Being held captive turns Katie feral, attacks one of her captors when his guard is down and escapes only to be returned to her captors by someone she thought way trying to help her.  Eventually, she is left for dead and impossibly survives.

Nudity is a tool in these movies.  It’s not arousing–not even a little–nor is it meant to be.  It only magnifies Katie’s vulnerability and humiliation.  It was effective.  What sadly wasn’t effective was the keystone soul-crushing moment of the original and the remake: that moment when the victim escapes only to be horrifyingly reunited with her captors.  In this movie it just sort of happens and you find yourself saying “well that sucks for her” and that’s about it.  Of course, most everything before and after this moment is still viciously cruel and intense.

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When Katie exacts her revenge the fun gets started for torture film enthusiasts.  I won’t ruin any of it other than to warn of some outstandingly graphic genital mutilation.  But I’ll say a fine job is done with the gore, the sounds of slow cuts, and some other nasty sloppy gastrointestinal  grossness.  As usual (in all these movies),  I question how she’s moving her captors’ bodies when they’re unconscious.  After all, she couldn’t weigh over 115 pounds and looks like she’s never done a push-up or sit-up; she’s a delicate little thing.  But I don’t let that ruin the Hostel-like fun.

Not so sweet and naïve anymore…

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She’s learning how to use tools…

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She’s getting handy with a knife…

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She’s remembering her knot-tying skills from girl scouts…

And even reflecting on her merit badge for holding her breath in the lake.

The acting is good and the story is more refined than the 1978 and 2010 iterations, and this story really captures the plotting psychological nature of vengeance better than the previous two movies.  I think all three of these movies were done VERY well and all were VERY effective.  The rape is always difficult to watch and even though it’s a movie I find myself wanting to punish someone for it, but I sooo love wincing and trying not to look away when the victim turns into the dark heroine to exact her revenge.

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15 Comments leave one →
  1. Greg permalink
    May 17, 2017 7:11 pm

    While the movie was done good * in some ways better then the 1st I had one big issue. The victim has her (main & 1st) rapist tied to a wall & she doesn’t really hurt him enough. Yet later she really gets an extreme revenge on his brother who never raped her, only hit her, by doing something to make sure he’ll never have sex again. Go figure?

Trackbacks

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  5. John’s Horror Corner: Cannibal Holocaust (1980), appallingly brutal yet stylistic and controversial yet admonishing. | Movies, Films & Flix
  6. John’s Horror Corner: Don’t Breathe (2016), so much more than a home invasion movie with a dark secret. | Movies, Films & Flix
  7. John’s Horror Corner presents Strong Opinions: Critically analyzing 10 reasons I appreciated the Evil Dead (2013) remake. | Movies, Films & Flix
  8. John’s Horror Corner: Saw (2004), James Wan’s progenitor of modern torture porn is all about the characters! | Movies, Films & Flix
  9. John’s Horror Corner: Saw II (2005), more brutal, more death traps, more ominous tapes, more Jigsaw! | Movies, Films & Flix
  10. John’s Horror Corner: Saw III (2006), proving that torture porn sequels can have good writing AND loads of lingering, gross, chunky gore! | Movies, Films & Flix
  11. John’s Horror Corner: Saw IV (2007), very ambitious story with lackluster execution and so-so death traps—my least favorite of the franchise so far. | Movies, Films & Flix
  12. John’s Horror Corner: Saw V (2008), just okay—I miss Leigh Whannell and characters that matter. | Movies, Films & Flix
  13. John’s Horror Corner: Saw VI (2009), Jigsaw fights the insurance industry from the grave in this redeeming sequel! | Movies, Films & Flix
  14. John’s Horror Corner: Saw 3D: The Final Chapter (2010), bravo, Jigsaw! The game is won and your puzzle is complete! | Movies, Films & Flix

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