Fans lined up at the Mayfair in anticipation of The Human Centipede premiere. Some of the 200 attendees had already seen the film, perhaps during the small theatrical run in Toronto. Just as many people in line were pleasantly unprepared for what they were about to see.
There was a lot of laughter as the film is surprisingly comedic, and the laugher continued throughout with any mention of the ‘beloved 3-dog’. The demented surgeon role was so vile and elegantly crafted, that without his adoration of his deceased pet, he would have been far too unsettling as a character. Inspired loosely by ‘Angel of Death’ Josef Mengele, there is no other way to feel anything resembling sympathy for him other than the loose association that he truly loved his dog(s).
Applause erupted during many scenes, but none compared to crowd cheering along with the mad doctor when he wakes his creature, and it stands for the first time. In the glory of his full-on Dr. Frankenstein moment, actor Deiter Laser captures manic pride in a wholly electric performance.
In conversation with Ottawa Horror and friends after the show, Laser was referred to as the new Udo Kier. Certainly, there are similarities; however, Laser has his own impressive body of work and it is far too soon to lump them together based on appearance and genre. For the uninitiated, if you liked Laser, you will love Kier.
Further conversation debated the medical accuracy claim. Medically accurate and medically possible are two different things. The operation itself being a ‘success’ is definitely up for interpretation.
The introduction of the two girls is classic horror movie style in that you nearly want them to die. They describe much of what is wrong with the world with helplessness, plastic personalities and annoying voices. Approaching the movie with a hint of the plot line, you know the villain does not want to kill them. Quite the opposite, you know the goal is to keep them around. It is an interesting mind-twist and soon enough, you forget their need of high heels and cell phones - they quickly become 'everyman' by nature of their torturous confinement. One would not fear their death in this situation, and as the male ‘lead’ proves, remaining alive is all too terrifying.
Thankfully, the story is not over-sexualized. With the neat omission of any genitals and only very brief glimpses of breasts, it is by grace and good taste alone that they did not go there. Where The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence) will take us in 2011 is anyone’s guess. Internet Movie Database lists Seth MacFarlane as the narrator in the upcoming sequel leaving much to the imagination.
Controversial, certainly. Thought provoking, yes. Warped, wrong, sick, waste of time – not at all. At the end of the day, it is thoughtfully filmed and perfectly scripted. The actors involved certainly bring every ounce of talent imaginable to every moment on screen. ‘Turn Brain Off – Insert Movie’ does not apply. This one makes you think, whether you like it or not.
So yes, I am eagerly anticipating having to awkwardly explain the premise in mixed company for 2011!