Thoughts On ‘I Spit On Your Grave’

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Those must have been some crazy Hollywood meetings. “Well, this Texas Chainsaw thing seems to have gone down well with the kids, are there any other of these ‘nasty’ things that we can re-introduce.” The sound of spoons slowly stirring coffee and a couple of stifled coughs and suddenly the youngest guy in the room speaks up. “Well, we could always do ‘Straw Dogs’, or ‘Last House On The Left’ or even ‘I Spit On Your Grave’?” “I Spit On Your…what?” “Another sort of copy of Bergman’s The Virgin Spring with a woman finding the strength to wreak bloody revenge against those who stole her dignity.” “Bloody? I like that. Get on it. Now about that new Kevin James movie…”

And so it came to pass that some of the most infamous movies of all time suddenly found themselves back in the multiplex, not watched illegally on some dusty old VHS tape, but up there on the biggest canvas of them all right next door to McG and Bay.

Don’t think that this means that ‘I Spit On Your Grave’ has been watered down by the system though, it is just as nasty and sickening as the original and even has some new tricks up it’s sleeve to get you looking away at certain moments.

It’s basically a film of two halves. Jennifer Hills, a writer from the city rents an old cabin in the country in order to start on her next masterwork. Set on a lake, it’s an idyllic place to let your imagination run wild and with cigarettes and alcohol to see her through, all seems perfect. Then the attack happens. Some local boys who she encountered at the garage show up and begin to degrade and humiliate her before she can get out and get the local sheriff to help. Here’s where you breathe a sigh of relief but it’s only the start of the horror as he is in cahoots with the local fucktards and they all take turns attacking the girl and turning her retreat into a living nightmare.

The second half is much less disturbing, although very violent as Jennifer returns to get her own back and give the boys a little payback. At this point, you’re dealing in the strange idea of the violent spectre being the heroine of the piece. Not even the most godly of souls would fail to think that these characters get exactly what is coming to them and Hill’s methods are somewhat ingenious too. A burnt off face here, crows stealing a man’s eyeballs there and a very special surprise for the sheriff…

Sarah Butler puts in an incredible performance as Jennifer Hills, she reminds me of Kristen Stewart looks wise but she is a stronger and far more vengeful character than Bella Swan. You feel her fragility and watch it turn to strength but at the same time you do have to ask how Jennifer will be after she’s cleared the board. Innocence lost and all the blood spilled, the victim becomes the attacker becomes the victim.

It’s brutal, it’s nasty, it’s ‘I Spit On Your Grave’. Still just as nasty even when it’s not a Nasty, although the BBFC did feel the need to snip 43 seconds out of it so perhaps it’s reputation still precedes it after all.

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