Monday, 1 June 2015

The Human Centipede III (Final Sequence)

There's a saying in the UK that somethings are 'Marmite' (the name of a sticky brown food paste, for those who don't know). Some people love the stuff, some people hate it. There's not really an inbetween feeling for it. This Marmite/love it or hate it feeling extends beautifully to the Human Centipede trilogy, the final installment of which is being reviewed here.

Personally, I loved the first two HC films. Yes, they were trashy, nasty, cheap and sometimes made you want to vomit a little into your own mouth, but they were also original and quirky, plus sometimes trashy and nasty aren't necessarily bad things!

Sadly, the same can not be said of the Final Sequence. Whereas Director Tom Six tried and, in the most part, succeeded to make us feel sick to the pits of our stomachs with the first two films, it seems his unquenching thirst to shock has backfired with the third film, which moves from original and nasty territory to 'meh, seen it all before but done better'. Yes, it includes its share of shocks and gore, but for the most part, Six's attempts to sucker punch us fall flat. Take for example (and I'll make it as vague as I can in an attempt to avoid spoilers) a scene where a guy stabs another guy in the side and proceeds to rape him in the wound. No doubt this was meant to be disturbing but, as I sat and watched it, I was actually thinking to myself 'Crash did the whole wound fucking thing so much better back in the late 90's ...'

In HC2, Six attempted to play with the realms of reality by making the film follow someone who was obsessed with the original and decides to re-enact it on a much grander scale, in the 'real' world. This was quite a clever twist and worked rather well, but in playing on this again in HC3 and making someone who watched the re-enactment in the second film attempt to re-enact it in their 'real' world, it just makes the whole premise dizzying and ludicrous. Six even attempts to make this film even more real-world by chucking himself in, as himself, to advise on the process of making the Human Centipede. Are you lost yet? Don't panic, the actual idea is simpler to follow and a lot less interesting!

As a fan of the original HC films, it's with a real heavy heart that I slight the final addition to the trilogy, but I guess, like The Matrix trying to cling on to its originality in a fast changing cinematic world, the only way Six could have succeeded with part 3 was to try and up the gross-out scale to 11 (a little Spinal nod there for ya!) but what we actually get is a ludicrous parody of the original films, which serves less like a end to a 'Sequence' and more like a spoof version of the original (just less Scary Movie, more Meet the Spartans!).