TIFF 2013: The Green Inferno
Eli Roth, (aka Midnight Madness’ Poster Boy) is back with an amusing Horror that will probably leave you impressed, if not a little queasy. The Green Inferno is a feel good cannibal romp that is very entertaining. Roth ups his horror skills to include enough plot and character development to help you actually care enough about most of the cast before they are brutally murdered by an indigenous Amazonian tribe.
I don’t consider the above paragraph spoilers, because its pretty well established that you’re in for a gore-Fest with The Green Inferno, taking its name and inspiration from the classic Italian shock-horror Cannibal Holocaust, you know what you’re in for. The only intriguing or unknown aspect of the film is the curiosity of each cast member’s death, of which we are offered a variety. Roth’s intentions with the film are obvious and deliberate; he’s going for Shock and Awe, and he will get it. He attempts to include a larger message, one of activism, and it’s not left behind but it’s definitely overshadowed by the horror and gore.
One could argue that he actually doesn’t go overboard, and therefore is showing growth and skill as a filmmaker, while keeping his overly energetic childlike enthusiasm. If you love over-the-top, cringe-worthy brutality, you’re in for a treat, while never taking it over the line into absurd. Although I don’t regard him as a particularly good filmmaker, I would argue that he is demonstrably good at entertaining. His perspective on movies as a whole is very current, and modern, while having an appreciation for cinematic history.
The range of talent when it comes to the actors is quite varied. The lead, Lorena Izzo is probably the most believable and honest. The others are decent, with the exception of Sky Ferreira who was downright wooden and awful. Luckily she’s only in the very start, and end of the movie, and we are spared having to see her trying to act her way through any horror scenes. The only other recognizable actor (to me, anyways) was Daryl Sabara, or as I called him, The Kid from Spy Kids.
Directly before the film, Roth asked the audience to keep an open mind, whatever film you have in your head, your expectations or premonitions for the film, to put them aside and enjoy the ride. I think he said this knowing that we would be better entertained with lower expectations. Having not particularly enjoyed Hostel in the first place (remind me why I chose to see this film?) I think I was in a good place to let The Green Inferno take me wherever it would, and in the end, I did enjoy the ride.