Film Review: The Green Inferno (Eli Roth, USA/Chile, 2013)

100 Mins

UK Release TBC

Playing as part of Frightfest 2014

RATING: ★★★★☆

Hostel and Cabin Fever director Eli Roth has divulged thatCannibal Holocaust is his favourite movie of all time, and this explains this brilliant homage to Ruggero Deodato’s classic, which premiered at this year’s FrightFest to an audience of horror fanatics and gore enthusiasts.

The Green Inferno follows a group of student activists in the Peruvian jungle as they attempt to stop bulldozers slaughtering the natives, until they quickly become lost, and then captured, by the very tribe they were trying to save. Unlike Cannibal Holocaust, The Green Inferno doesn’t sit within the found footage sub-genre. It does, however, attempt to make a point about current hot-button issues such as Female Genital Mutilation (though there is no actual footage of FGM). The Green Inferno also showcases a great deal of unrelenting violence, and a heightened sense of realism.

The cast list mainly consists of little known actors, including the pop star Sky Ferreira; oddly one of the top billed despite a limited on screen presence. Juni from Spy Kids makes an appearance, now all grown up. Considering the omission of star quality for one of the higher budgeted films of this year’s FrightFest, the film still maintains its suspense and horrifying qualities, and is one of the best features this year showing at the festival.

This time around, FrightFest seemed to be catering to the more comedy-horror aspects of the genre, and The Green Inferno is both an exception to and an example of this. The film, though shockingly brutal at times, has elements of dark humour residing within; this is not atypical of Roth’s films. The inclusion of comedic uncontrollable bowel expulsions, phallic references and unlikely masturbation by the captives seems to be a move towards swapping fear for comedy. In a culture where viewers have seen everything, it seems comedy is becoming a filmmaker’s saviour when faced with the possibility that the film won’t be terrifying enough.

The Green Inferno won’t be seeing a wider cinema release on its planned date this September 5, due to unforeseen problems with the film distributors Worldview. The film will be released straight to DVD, but hopefully this film will still get the recognition it deserves and this won’t be the last we hear of The Green Inferno, cannibals, or everyone’s favourite gore-master; Eli Roth.

Film Review: The Green Inferno (Eli Roth, USA/Chile, 2013)
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