Horror. Worldview. Faith.

The Human Centipede – Review

The Human Centipede – Review

Dec 17, 2010

reviewed by hallo
directed by Tom Six, 2009

Some films are promoted and sustained by the high level of extravagant shock-value offered through its imagery and motif.  The Human Centipede (first sequence) is the definition of such a film.  Directed by Tom Six, who promises an even more graphic version with his “second sequence” to be released in 2011, relies on the horrid theme of the movie to expunge it of a host of problematic issues, such as acting, editing, and musical score.  None of those typically important aspects of a film are why any of us who are depraved enough to watch this movie dial it in.  We want to see if this film really delivers on the absurd and grotesque plot on which it is based:  a brilliant but crazy doctor who decides to create his own “human centipede” by surgically attaching the mouth of one victim to the anus of the next, making a three person centipede sharing one digestive system.  It really is hard to believe that anyone would watch this garbage.

It was about 30 minutes into the film that I realized I was watching something that had absolutely nothing to offer beyond disgust.  I am not of the camp that believes a horror movie always has some redeeming value simply because it succeeds in repulsing you.  I do believe for all of us horror fans, we enjoy a good kill scene or a great working of gore, but for the most part just shocking the audience with brutal images does not get the job done at the end of the day.  I finished this movie, just barely, realizing that I was in no part the better for watching it at any level.  And in fact, the reverse could be true.  I was thankful when the images were out of my immediate conscience.

Now, having said that, let me say this.  The movie is not near as graphic as one might think.  This is why Tom Six “held off” on the real gruesome stuff for the “second sequence.”  He wanted to get people used to the idea of a human centipede before showing more of what he really wants to show.  Due to the bandages that are used in the operation, you really never see much of the actual surgical point of contact between the parties.  It doesn’t matter though because the human mind is capable of filling in the blanks and mine did so all too well.  Case in point, the first time the “head” of the centipede has a bowel movement, nothing is shown except for the look of terror and disgust in the “second” part of the centipede.  Yet, it was at this point that I was tempted to turn off the movie.  And I probably should have.

So, all I can say about this movie is, well, not much.  I have at least now reviewed it as best I could for TheBlackestEyes, but that is all I really know to say.  I can’t recommend it, nor can I advise you to stay away from it.  Although if you were on middle ground, probably the former would be wise.

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