With the amount of J-horror remakes Hollywood’s been rolling off the assembly line the past few years, I’ve been wondering if there are any original or influential voices left in the world of horror on this side of the pond. I’m sure there are, it’s just that everything these days seems to be based on a novel, comic, or previous film, and struggling filmmakers with original ideas just aren’t getting their fair shake.
Nevertheless, the Asian film community seems to think there’s been some original ideas coming out of North America, namely films like Hostel, Turistas, Saw, or even the wretched excuse for a movie that was Captivity because The Butcher, which is currently making its debut at the New York Asian Film Festival, is quite proudly mining many elements from these films, some of which the mainstream media has dubbed “torture porn.”
Myself, I don’t subscribe to that term (I’ll stick with calling something a good ol’ fashion horror film or monster movie, whichever applies) but there is no doubt the clip below is a little unsettling. You’ll notice the Hostel-like apron and Pig mask a la Saw on the would-be killer in the following; however, that doesn’t detract from the quality.
As for The Butcher, the official synopsis is as follows:
“Told entirely through two POV video cameras, The Butcher throws viewers abruptly into the middle of chaos and death: a handful of people have been abducted and lie bloodied and bound on the floor of a rotting slaughterhouse. Nearby, a team of snuff film producers are discussing their gruesome handiwork: torturing their captives to death, one by one, and selling the tapes overseas to foreign audiences hungry for footage of Koreans murdering one another.”
Word to the wise, some of you may be a little put off by the clip below, so don’t say I didn’t give you a heads-up should you not want to see that sort of thing. Also, best to view it in full-screen mode, since for some reason the smaller window just isn’t jiving with things, at least on my end of the net.