Grotesque (2009)


I found out about this through a list of banned films. To my surprise, it’s available through Netflix, and they actually had the unrated version. After watching it, I’m not sure if I’m completely desensitized to graphic violence, or if this was a poor man’s attempt at shock value/torture porn. From what I gathered, there’s a sadist doctor that gets his rocks off by torturing people to death. That’s pretty much it.

It’s only 73 minutes long, so that should tell you how much time went to the actual story and character progression. I timed it to around 10 minutes. The rest is sexual humiliation, genital mutilation, dismemberment, disemboweling, and finally decapitation. Call me crazy, but I can’t see why it was banned. Yes, it’s pretty damn gross at times. However, I know for a fact I’ve seen much, much worse in theaters that are released on the big screen

This is just Japan’s take on “splatter” porn, but I was just bored. There’s nothing here except just gore and blood, and even that still doesn’t add any excitement. If you’re going for torture porn, you still need a plot. Why did the doctor decide that this was the best way to spend his free time? How has he been able to get away with it for so long? I really just wanted to know could people not notice a dirty white van that smells like rotting flesh.

From what little acting there is, it’s still bad. Considering people got various bits chopped off, they were relatively calm. Non torture scenes are awkwardly forced, and there’s this weird static whenever someone speaks. This gets a 0. I love Japan and their bizarre film-making, but it didn’t work this time. This is yet another one meant for gorehounds or fans of the torture sub-genre. Never thought I would ever say this, but Hostel is a bit better. It’s still kind of bad, but I appreciate Eli Roth for at least trying. I can’t say the same for Grotesque. However, like most things that come from Japan, this will make you say: What the hell did I just see? If you want gory Japanese weirdness, this is right up your alley. The rest of you should just watch Saw.


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