Dubbed to be the "most controversial film in movie history", Ruggero Deodato's Cannibal Holocaust (1980) is about an NYU Professor who sets out in the Amazon to figure out what happened to a film crew making a documentary about the local tribes. After finding the remains of the crew among one of the tribes, the professor returns to the U.S. with the documentary footage where he reviews the film. However, he discovers a gory fate for the four crew members.
*Takes deep breath in. Breathes out*
This movie is by far one of the hardest movies to watch I have ever seen. Other than the obvious cannibalism featured in the movie, the audience endures two rape scenes, human mutilation and the real slaughter of living animals. I know, I know--why would anyone want to watch that? Personally, I decided to watch this movie as sort of a preliminary film to Eli Roth's The Green Inferno. Yet this film was a lot harder to watch than The Green Inferno because the fact that live animals were used made it horrifying. Although movies today are prohibited from hurting live animals, this film was made in a time when the rules were more lenient. Not only that, the mutilation of the characters were also gruesome in that the film included two rapes scenes and the removal of male genitalia--which the film did not shy away from.
However, the main reason I give this movie such a high rating is that the cast played such convincing characters which ranges from the documentarians who pillaged and raped the South American natives to the professor who believes that the tribe must remain in tact regardless of the cannibalism present in their society. When the professor reviews the film, I found myself actually looking forward to seeing what happened to the last film crew. The crew comprised of horrible people who could care less about the natives they were studying.
After watching the film, I thought a lot about what I had just witnessed and I realized that that is what makes films like Cannibal Holocaust such a success. The films that remain in the back of your head long after you finished the movie are the ones that continue to succeed. Aside from the plot, the shock factor is definitely there. I recommend this movie to those with a strong stomach and a fascination for all things gore.
If you're looking for a movie with sex, nudity, blood, and cannibalism, then this movie is definitely for you.