The Grim Reaper (1980)

aka Antropophagus
Article 3237 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 4-30-2010
Posting Date: 6-25-2010
Directed by Joe D’Amato
Featuring Tisa Farrow, Saverio Vallone, Serena Grandi
Country: Italy
What it is: Gory cannibal horror flick

Several tourists arrive on a Greek island to discover that the village is empty… and that someone is stalking all of them with the intent of making them meals… his meals, that is.

I’m assuming I watched the cut version of this movie; it’s mostly in English, though there appear a few scenes in foreign languages with subtitles, so I suspect it was put together from more than one source. I haven’t been particularly impressed with the D’Amato movies I’ve seen so far, but in this one, I grew to appreciate that he occasionally has the ability to set up a good surprise moment; there are times here where unexpected events happen at just the right moment, and though I wouldn’t call them ‘jump’ scenes per se, they do put you slightly on edge and are interesting to watch. It doesn’t always work; occasionally the set-ups are so blatant that the end result is more comic than scary, such as the scene with the bucket here. My biggest problem with the movie may be more with my print than the movie itself; so many of the night scenes are so dark that it’s impossible to make out what’s going on. If that was actually an intent on the part of the director, than he overused it. Overall, the movie worked passably well; though it didn’t exactly have me on the edge of my seat, it didn’t bore me either. I suspect the movie is mostly remembered for its two central gore set pieces, one involving a pregnant woman, and the final scene of the movie; I’d heard about the former scene beforehand, so I was prepared. As for the final scene, I found myself trying to decide if it was the stupidest gore set piece I’ve ever seen or one of the most grotesquely transcendent ones; at any rate, it does add a whole new level of meaning to a certain five-word catchphrase involving food.

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