I Spit On Your Grave 2

Discussion in 'High Def' started by Chunkblower, Oct 8, 2013.

  1. Chunkblower

    Chunkblower Member

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    [​IMG]


    [​IMG] Reviewer: Chunkblower
    Review Date: October 8, 2013

    Format: Blu-ray
    Released by: Anchor Bay
    Release date: September 24, 2013
    MSRP: $30.99
    Region A
    Progressive Scan
    Codec: AVC, 1080p
    Widescreen 2.40 | 16x9: Yes
    2013


    inline ImageThe original I Spit on Your Grave is one of the few films I find utter irredeemable and totally morally reprehensible. It’s crude, stupid and poorly made, but to its minor credit it’s one of the few films dealing with rape that doesn’t glamourize the subject matter. The 2010 remake was just as vile and reprehensible, but undeniably well-made and disquietingly effective. But really, was there anything on the subject left unsaid that would necessitate a sequel? If there was, it still hasn’t been dealt with. Despite the numeral in the title, I Spit on Your Grave 2 is not a sequel but a cheap rip-off of the remake, and it’s not even a good rip-off, either. The bold artlessness of 2013’s incarnation of I Spit on Your Grave make both the original 1978 film and the remake look like models of good taste and restraint.
    This movie would have to look up to see the bottom of the barrel.

    The Story (Ha! Story. Good one.)

    inline ImageKatie (Jemma Dallender) is an aspiring model who moves to New York City in hopes of breaking into the industry. Armed with pluck, determination, a pretty face and not much more than that, she’s on verge of giving up when she finds an ad for a free photo shoot. She calls the number on the ad and though the voice on the phone is suspiciously evasive, she decides to make the appointment anyway. She winds up in a dingy basement suite with leering photographer Ivan (Joe Absolom) and his two brothers, imbecile Georgy (Yavor Baharoff) and drug addict Nicolay (Aleksandar Aleksiev). The shoot seems to be going well for Katie until Ivan tells her to strip. Apparently he publishes nude pictures of his models on the Internet to subsidize the cost of their photo shoot. Katie immediately declines and leaves. Compromising her principles is too high a price to pay for fame.

    The rest of the movie is dedicated to punishing her for having a sense of personal morals and for possessing the agency to exercise them.

    inline ImageIn short order, Katie is attacked in her apartment by Georgy and brutally raped. Kindly custodian Jayson (Michael Dixon) who lives in the apartment below her is stabbed to death when he tries to intercede on her behalf. The situation having escalated beyond his ability to cope, Georgy calls in his brothers to help clean up the mess. This entails drugging Katie and abducting her to Bulgaria (not because it’s important to the plot, but because it’s cheap to film there…and even cheaper if you don’t try to disguise the fact that you’re filming in Bulgaria). So begins an agonizingly long sequence where Katie repeatedly raped, beaten, tortured and humiliated. After what feels like an eternity, she manages to escape and find her way into police custody, only to be handed back to her captors: in some of the laziest writing imaginable Ana (Mary Stockley), the female officer assigned to her case, is actually Georgy’s mother. It’s a plot twist that might’ve been played for surprise or suspense in a better movie, but that I saw coming because it fit the absolute witlessness of the movie up to that point.

    inline ImageThe brothers stuff the nearly unrecognizable Katie into a box, bury her alive in their basement and figure they’re done with her. Not so: in an additional twist of lazy, idiotic writing she winds up in the sewers under a church, where she begins to plot her revenge. She doesn’t spend much time doing so, and it shows because her revenge is lazy and abbreviated. In fact, those adjectives could describe every aspect of this movie not dealing with rape or torture. When it comes to the humiliation of its female star, Grave 2 is very meticulously conceived and executed with painstaking detail. Every drop of urine on Katie’s naked body, every cattle prod to the genitals lovingly lingered on.

    inline ImageSee, I’m not dismissing this movie because it portrays rape. I’m dismissing it because it only seems to care about portraying rape in the most humiliating and pornographic way possible. Every other aspect of the movie seems designed to get to the next scene of degradation as quickly as possible. There’s no real plot to speak of, and very little in the way of character development. Given the moral issues that arise around the topic of vigilantism and victim’s rights, you’d have to studiously avoid dealing with them to wind up with a movie that doesn’t even come within spitting distance of having some kind of subtext, but I Spit on Your Grave 2 manages to be utterly vapid as well as utterly repugnant. An oversight like that shows utter contempt for the audience and I’m going to assume that’s exactly what the filmmaker’s had. This movie earns no favours from me.

    inline ImageIt’s to her credit, then, the Jemma Dallender makes as strong an impression as she does with such thin material. She gives a fierce and fearless performance, whether she’s being tortured, or she’s crushing some guy’s balls in a workbench vise. I wish Katie had been conceived as a person rather than a punching bag. Dallender is so fresh-faced and appealing and obviously very brave; I would have liked to see what she would have done with a juicier role. I guess I’ll just have to wait and see. Hopefully this shameful exercise in sadism will be a stepping stone on the way to better roles that she can put behind her forever.

    inline ImageAt the best of times releasing a movie as cruel and misogynist as I Spit on Your Grave 2 would be in poor taste. Given the recent rash of high profile sexual assaults making the news and the resultant kickback against rape culture among feminists, it’s as poorly timed as could possibly be imagined. The 2010 film actually garnered a bit of notice among mainstream critics, but I see this “sequel” is being unceremoniously shuffled off to the wasteland of video. Perhaps even the people involved realize just what a bad idea this movie was. Hopefully it’s quickly buried and we’re spared the prospect of I Spit on Your Grave 3.

    Image Quality

    inline ImageIt’s a new movie. It looks good. Big whoop.
    If anything, they quality of the video shows just how much behind the camera talent was squandered on such a pile of shit. Damian Bromley’s cinematography is sharp and brooding, and the film is soaked in Bouseman-esque greens and yellows. And urine. Don’t forget that. Blacks are strong, detail is sharp, so every bruise on Katie’s face and every cattle prod to her vagina is rendered clear as day.

    Yay.

    Sound

    inline ImageThe Dolby Digital 5.1 True HD track is one of the better mixes I’ve heard on a low budget movie. Whether it’s the blur of sounds panning around the back channels as Katie wakes up from her drug-induced stupor, or the atmospheric echoing of dripping of water in the sewers, it’s an unexpectedly effective mix. Again, though, it’s impressive technical craft in service of unredeemable exploitation. It could be the best mix in the world and that wouldn’t mitigate the content of this film one bit.

    There are no alternate language or subtitle tracks but when your soundtrack consists primarily of cries of pain and anguish, why bother paying actors to dub it into another language. At any rate, our non-Anglophone friends are missing nothing.

    Supplemental Material

    The only supplement is a collection of Deleted Scenes (5:23).
    I’m actually glad that there’s no audio commentary with director Steven R. Munroe. Any attempts to try and defend a film so callous and unnecessary probably would have sent me into paroxysms of rage that would have left my TV smashed, and my soul crushed.

    Final Thoughts

    inline ImageEven though I don’t agree with vigilante justice or even the death penalty, I understand the charge that people get from watching loathsome characters get served their just desserts in ironically gruesome ways. I get that. I dig it. You will not will not find any of that visceral thrill in I Spit on Your Grave 2. Most rape/revenge thrillers hide behind the justification that they are made for people who sympathize with the victim. I don’t necessarily buy that in most cases, but I usually let it pass. Grave 2, however, has no such defense to hide behind. It’s made for people whose sympathies lie with the rapists. The revenge part of the equation seems like a total afterthought; it’s like they were editing the film and realized that they had a feature film in which a woman is beaten, raped, tortured and pissed on for 80 minutes and then buried alive, and hastily then shot a third act to justify the first two. Its shock for the sake of shock in the most heartless and cruel fashion imaginable.

    The Blu-ray is technically proficient, but who cares? You can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear and no matter how much your try and polish a turd with 1080p resolution and a True HD mix, it’s still a turd. Avoid this movie like you’d avoid a turd on the sidewalk, and we’ll all be better for it.

    Rating

    [​IMG] Movie - F

    Image Quality - B+

    Sound - B+

    Supplements - D


    Technical Info.
    • Colour
    • Running time - 1 hour and 46 minutes
    • Not Rated, 18A
    • 2 Discs (1 Blu-ray, 1 DVD)
    • Chapter Stops
    • English 5.1 True HD Audio
    • English SDH subtitles
    • Spanish subtitles (if applicable)

    Supplemental Material
    • Deleted scenes

    Other Photos

    [​IMG]
     
  2. hellraiser40

    hellraiser40 Active Member

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    i thought the remake of ISOYG was a well made movie and quite brutal, i don't know if i will give this a try, brutalism and violence without context, meaning or some kind of decent story don't do it for me
     
  3. Demoni

    Demoni Active Member

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    Really don´t understand the F note... This movie rocks, right up there with the remake.
     
  4. MisterTwister

    MisterTwister The Schlock King

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    I wish Rhett reviewed this, since I know he liked the remake.
     
  5. rhett

    rhett Administrator

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    Chunkblower liked the remake as well, I'd trust his judgment here. He's right that there's a fine line when watching these films - sometimes I'm on board, like with the remake or Death Wish 2 or Ms. 45 or whatever, but sometimes I am repulsed to the point where I no longer want to watch movies, like The Devils Experiment.

    I think that line differs for a lot of us, but it's always a risk watching these films, and going by my man Chunkblower's tortured review, I'm glad I sat this journey out.
     
  6. Anthropophagus

    Anthropophagus Well-Known Member

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    I was going to give this a chance, now I'll pass. I despise these excruciatingly painful rape centered films with a passion, unless there is some context or redeeming value as in Straw Dogs or the original Last House.
    Thanks Chunkblower.
     

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