Friday, March 26, 2010
The MARCH of Death, Day 25: 'Cannibal'
Marian Dora’s 2006 film Cannibal is quite something to wrap your head around. The true story of Armin Meiwes, known in Germany as the internet cannibal is simply put: mind numbingly hellish. Often when you see the title card: Based On Actual Events arrive at the start of a film, you can be sure that it either is not true at all or has been embellished for entertainment purposes. It is my belief that Dora set out with only one intent: to document and show the incredibly vile happenings between two consenting men. Gore hounds may revel in it’s graphically visceral depiction of death and dismemberment. But if one chooses to do a little research on Meiwes and watch this film as more of a case study, well, you’re going to want to remove your eyes with a spork. I have a tremendous interest in serial killers. I am fascinated by reading and researching about people who inflict this type of pain on the world. What struck such a chord with Meiwes’ story is the fact that his “victim” was a willing participant. The narrative involves a man who is trolling the internet to find someone wanting to be eaten. As he himself has the unhealthy desire to consume someone else completely. After a few stalled attempts, Meiwes finally finds his soul mate. Their initial meeting leads to some very disturbing and uncomfortable revelations. This act of cannibalism is arousing on many levels for both men. A sexual relationship quickly blooms and it isn’t long before the love making turns into the ghastly ceremony of dissection and evisceration. I’m not spoiling anything. You know right from the door the exact path this story will take. The only surprises or shocks come from seeing what you could not imagine transpiring in front of you. There is virtually no dialogue, the performances a subtle, minimal, bleak. In my opinion, this is not a film built to entertain. It is a film built to show the viewer a snapshot in the life of two men who consented to something that for whatever reasons they needed more passionately than this reviewer could ever comprehend. I encourage you to do some research on Meiwes and then, and only then, watch Cannibal and decide for yourself whether the film is pure exploitation or a documentation of one of the most bizarre events in human history.
Director: Marian Dora
Starring: Carsten Frank and Victor Brandl
8/10 Farmhouses ~ Chris Conduit