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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Rating: *** out of ****
They really don't make movies like this anymore, and by that I mean we don't see low-budget hybrid adventure/horror flicks with constant gratuitous sex and nudity anymore, making Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals a relic of a time when exploitation cinema was at the height of its popularity. Almost thirty years later, this particular flick rates among the most entertaining of its genre.
The film opens in a mental institute, where undercover report Emanuelle (70s sex icon and all-around hottie Laura Gemser) figures she has a lead for a big story on cannibals when a nurse is bitten by one of the patients. Following up an interview with the patient, Emanuelle forms an expedition to the Amazon, where she tags along with an anthropologist, a hunter and his sex-obsessed wife (ultra hottie Nieves Navarro), a nun, and a blonde chick (Monica Zanchi) who really seems to serve no purpose other than showing skin. For the majority of the journey, the most pressing concern is who's going to have sex with who, but they eventually cross paths with a tribe of cannibals who decide on making this particular band of travelers their next meal.
I suspect the one audience that will find themselves most disappointed in the film are horror fans expecting a wall-to-wall gorefest. Except for the last ten minutes, there's very little in the way of violence and even then the actual gore effects may prove a letdown. Rather, your enjoyment of the flick rests more on the scenery, the constant nudity, and a low-budget sense of adventure through the jungle. Maybe my standards have gotten lower, but it really was enough to make for an entertaining experience.
I admit to being a fan of jungle adventure flicks, if for no other reason than to enjoy the exotic sights and sounds. Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals isn't exactly Temple of Doom in this regard, but it does a sufficient job of using its jungle locations to maximum effect so far as possible for such a low-budget flick. Of course, when the setting is mixed with hot naked women, how can I resist?
As Emanuelle, Laura Gemser is a hottie who appears perfectly natural and comfortable with her body, which seems to be the defining trait of her character. Her best moments in the flick include a hot sex scene at a pier, in which despite being clothed we still get great looks at her breasts and bush, and the last ten minutes of the movie, where she strips totally nude to fool the the tribe into thinking she's their water goddess. This actually stands as one of the most creative excuses for nudity I've ever seen and ultimately serves as a great way to cap-off the flick.
The other women in this flick are Nieves Navarro and Monica Zanchi. Navarro is an incredibly hot redhead with a fantastic body. She gets in her most memorable moment with a very explicit masturbation scene where she shows us virtually every inch of her body. It's also worth noting she bears a strong resemblance to the gorgeous Rocki Roads. Zanchi pales considerably in comparison to Gemser and Navarro, but she has a fairly good-looking body and contributes to the nudity. Like Gemser, she also spends the last ten minutes of the movie without any clothes on. It is bothersome to note that her character may have gotten impregnated by the tribe but it's an issue never brought up by anyone else at the end.
As a horror flick, Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals is pretty much a resounding failure. While there is gore, the film is still otherwise lacking in suspense and action. But the addition of horror elements only serves to make this a very amusing cross-genre experience. If you're into low budget 70s exploitation cinema or just like to see hot naked women traipsing through the jungle, then this is almost undoubtedly a must see flick.
The sex in this one is really hot. In fact it's got the best female masturbation moment that I've ever seen. It's the extreme violence paired with the over the top soundtrack music that really blew me away. Also the cannibals going wild. I showed some friends and they had never watched anything like it. If only "House of 1000 Corpses" could be so crazy. We live in sensitive times and in a tame country. Thank goodness for the classic Italian cannibal movies.
Late Italian film maker Aristide Massaccesi's aka Joe D'Amato's filmography
consists of films from many different genres. He made some horror films that
have become cult classics like the thoroughly sick Beyond the Darkness
(1979) or the legendary cannibal tale Anthropophagous the Beast (1980) and
its gory sequel Rosso sangue aka Absurd (1981). He also made a huge amount
of soft and hard core porno and many combinations of these genres and
others, too, like sword and sandals, comedy, action, scifi and so on. He is
best known for his horror and sex films, as well as some of the sickest and
most mean spirited images and ideas ever put on silver screen, most notably
his Emanuelle in America (1976) that includes plenty of perverse sex, orgies
and the repulsive fake "snuff" scenes that look painfully real but are in
fact - and fortunately - staged by the Italian effects maestro Giannetto de
Rossi. He made a lot of the Emanuelle cash ins, and Emanuelle e gli ultimi
cannibali aka Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals (1977) is among the most
noteworthy ones as it combines the elements of the Italian cannibal genre
and throws some severe sleaze to the already delicious (as an exploitation
fan's point of view) soup, and what's most important, it is not too slow and
boring to sit through like some of the horror exploitation films of the
Laura Gemser, the Indonesian born black beauty and D'Amato regular, plays Emanuelle, a journalist that starts to investigate a strange thing that happens in the city hospital. A girl that has been saved from the Amazon bites off a piece of her nurse's breast and eats it like a cannibal. Soon Emanuelle learns about the cannibals that are living in the Amazon and also decides to go there with professor Mark Lester (Gabriele Tinti) and some other people to investigate and make the news sensation of her lifetime. But things don't go as they wish. They soon find themselves trapped inside the jungle while gory cannibalistic murders start to take place and their group looses more and more men and women. The alternative US title for the film, Trap Them and Kill Them, depicts quite well the spirit of the film once "the things get going."
The film is honest and pure exploitation with huge amounts of sex and sleaze in it. The long and steamy sex and masturbation scenes are almost hard core level but still they obviously didn't want to make this so strong as I don't think the veteran Italian horror/exploitation producer Fabrizio de Angelis would have been interested in that kind of stuff as he was the co-producer in this film. The film has many close ups of people's sensitive areas and the funny thing is how all the female characters seem to sleep with their "parts" bare and not covered or clothed at all. Naturally this is a good excuse for D'Amato to show more and more these images of female nudity. Also, these people seem to make love and please each other everywhere and with everyone, no matter if they're married, in love, in mental hospital or in danger to get killed, they just need to make love all the time! This film is on the same sleaze level with Michele Massimo Tarantini's severely insane Brazilian/Italian exploitation romp Nudo e selvaggio aka Massacre in Dinosaur Valley (1985) as that film has perhaps even dirtier and more selfish characters than in D'Amato's film!
The other exploitation element here is of course the gore, which is quite strong. The scenes of cannibalistic carnage include many impalements with spears, some graphic gut munching and such misogynistic mutilation scenes that would make those not familiar with the genre cringe in amazement and repulsion. The gore scenes are as nasty as can be expected by a late seventies Italian production like this and so nothing is left to imagination. Still one "gore scene" stands out as one of the worst of all time. It includes a man being forced in half with a sharp string but the result is SO laughably badly staged it is even more unrealistic than if we'd see the hand that throws the fake blood on the screen! I would have expected something more imaginative from these makers, now it is just plain dull and very unconvincing to say the least.
The soundtrack by D'Amato regular (for many of his porn flicks as well as the composer of Mario Girolami's cheesy gore film Zombie Holocaust (1979) ) Nico Fidenco is very interesting especially during the cannibal attacks as it consists of some very low and menacing sounds and "breaths" on the soundtrack. These are genuinely creepy scenes and add nicely to the atmosphere of the film, in fact they are probably the only cinematically noteworthy elements that can be found in this piece of exploitation. Speaking of positive elements of the film, the way how Gemser's character has "grown up" by the end and learnt about the morality of her (real life) work is very nice as it really tells something about the director and other makers involved in the film as they didn't want the end result, inside the film, look immoral and selfish even though the character(s) at first might be and were so. Still the film is very far from the important social commentary and global subject matters of Ruggero Deodato's masterpiece Cannibal Holocaust (1979).
Cinematography by the director himself is nothing special and tries to be "inventive" during the love scenes as camera twists and flies over the two pieces of flesh that make love to each other. Of course it is nice to see something unconventional in the camerawork but still they don't manage to convince in this film too much and seem to be just gratuitous. The scenes at the jungle vary from bright daylight to dark but I think it is because the trees and vegetation don't allow the sunlight to shine to the ground, so it cannot be considered as a mistake by the film crew by shooting other bits at daytime and other at night and then editing them into one scene as is the case sometimes with these films!
Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals is a pretty noteworthy piece of its genre and in the filmography of its maker as it is so clear what kind of a man D'Amato was in the field of cinema. As he has told himself, "I'm a businessman, and not an artist" and that comes perfectly clear by watching his films that rarely are anything more than just cash ins and money makers. 6/10
The acting may be appalling, but it's difficult to tell for sure
because this is dubbed -- badly. The direction, by high priest of
sleaze Joe D'Amato, is adequate, but it's the unrelenting sex and
violence that float this flick's boat.
A lot of "classic" exploitation is, in fact, incredible boring, slow moving, and beyond inept. This is not one of those. This delivers what audiences expect, and it takes the carnage several steps beyond the norm. We get nipples cut off and eaten, a vagina cut open and used as a hole to pull innards through, castration, close-to-hardcore sex, stabbings, beheadings and damn attractive women.
Laura Gemser is her usual stunning self as Emanuelle and is lovingly scrutinized in a couple of love scenes by D'Amato's leering camera.
Some of the photography is surprisingly atmospheric and the score is memorable and moody.
The director is often criticized for his output, but I'm happy to congratulate him for a body of work that is, if nothing else, unashamedly extreme and sleazy. Franco made many more boring stinkers than D'Amato and rarely made anything that wasn't awash with shoddy camera-work, nonsensical plotting and self-indulgent repetition. D'Amato, on the other hand, was a dedicated journeyman who gave audiences what they wanted. He wasn't a genius by any stretch and he was sloppy with his action direction, but he did contribute to an impressive oeuvre.
"Emmanuelle and The Last Cannibals" is textbook trash.
EMANUELLE AND THE LAST CANNIBALS is a pretty slow moving and ultimately
dull exploitation film from Smut King, Joe D'Amato. Filled with plenty
of tits and ass and a few choice gore scenes, this one still tends to
be rather boring and uninspired.
The insanely sexy Laura Gemser once again plays a nymphette journalist who's always looking for the latest "scoop". While doing some undercover work at a mental hospital, our sexy heroine comes across a titty-eating whacko who was brought up by cannibals, which of course starts Emanuelle thinking about her next story. She teams up with a professor and some others and sets out on an expedition into the Amazon. Things go wrong (as they always do in these jungle films...) and our friends spend the rest of the film's run-time being harassed by the local cannibals.
After seeing the Almighty King Of Sleaze Films - EMANUELLE IN America - I was hoping for a lot more from this one. LAST CANNIBALS didn't deliver near the amount of sleazy filth that America did, and although there were a few decent gore scenes (the female-evisceration-innards-eating was particularly choice...) everything in this film felt sort of half-assed and dull. Worth a look for the serious exploit fan, others will probably be bored or disgusted. If you're into this genre of film, skip this one and go straight for EMANUELLE IN America - I guarantee you won't be disappointed - 6/10 for LAST CANNIBALS...
Much with like Nun or Nazi-sploitation, the Italian cannibal movie
cycle of the 1970's is something of a bizarre enigma of a niche genre
to the uninitiated. To the average layperson, Italians and cannibal
movies must seem terribly outlandish... but then again so would the
idea of Herzog shooting so many German-language films in the Amazon.
Italy actually made at least 5 serious cannibal/jungle adventures and
around 10 lesser ones from 1972-1988. This one lacks the
professionalism of Ruggero Deodato's, the style of Umberto Lenzi's, and
the austere grandeur and seriousness of Sergio Martino's efforts, but
makes up for it with ample sex and lurid cheesiness.
Yup, this is the one and only true soft-core porn-themed Italian cannibal movie, complete with plenty of self-pleasury, lesbianry, voyeury, buggery, and plain ol' missionary. One of those films that makes you feel dirty while watching it or later with the mere memory of having seen it.
One of the lower-budgeted efforts ranking down there with ZOMBIE HOLOCAUST, EMANUELLE IN THE LAST CANNIBALS must have been shot mostly just outside Rome. Awful gore effects only enhance the fun, but the real stars of the show are the even worse-than-usual dubbing, shamefully bad dialog, and many questionable directorial touches. Right when you're laughing out loud at the film, it often switches gears into 'sex mode' with numerous soft-core scenes which act as plot-padding filler. Thankfully the animal-killing scenes are in short supply for a change.
Acting-wise, they could have done a lot worse. Save for Japanese actor Al Yamanouchi's hilarious early-career miscasting as an uncredited Latino guide, the cast is most appropriate with a good cross-section of Italian B-movie characters of the time. Donal O'Brien chews scenery wonderfully as a hard-as-nails guide, Gabriele Tinti gives just as earnest a leading man performance as he did in his earlier art-house days, Laura Gemser & Nieves Navarro look pretty and seems comfortable with the rampant nudity. Also watch for ubiquitous euro-fatman and villain voice-over actor Geoffrey Copleston as a random Amazonian landowner. All that's missing are cameos from George Eastman or Luc Merenda.
Fidenco's score gives a certain level of cheesy seriousness to the thing, but also pegs it all as sexually-themed. This film was more-or-less remade much more professionally years later as CANNIBAL FEROX with no sex and much more violence. Among its genre peers, this film (which I'll call TRAP THEM AND KILL THEM this time) ranks among the more enjoyable in that in the unintentional hilarity department it ranks second only to EATEN ALIVE.
The fifth part of the Black Emanuelle series starring Laura Gemser is,
along with Emanuelle in America, the most of famous of them all. And
with a good reason: The movie is a entertainment mix of softcore sex,
"extreme" gore and adventure epic! The plot goes like this: While doing
an undercover work in a mental hospital, Emanuelle discovers a girl who
seems to have been raised by a cannibal tribe. She decides to go to the
Amazonian jungle and there she finds that the supposedly extinct tribe
is very much alive and the massacre starts! Even if the movie has a
typical "cannibal flick" plot, and the gore is a bit restrained (but
amusing to watch), the purpose of the movie is to show as much nudity
as you can in a 90 minutes movie. And in that, the movie doesn't
disappoint a bit. The main actresses are all very attractive,
especially Laura Gemser and Euro horror regular Susan Scott (Death
Walks at Midnight).
On a side note, the soundtrack of this one is pure gold! Written by Nico Fidenco, the catchy main tune is very effective.
It's not as good as Emanuelle in America, but I still recommend this to anyone who likes 70s exploitation cinema! 7/10
Emanuelle (the exotic Laura Gemser), world famous photo-journalist is
on assignment at a New York asylum when she runs across a feral woman
who cannibalistically attacks one of the nurses. She gathers up the
resources she needs to mount an expedition into the heart of Amazonia
to track down a reputedly extinct cannibal tribe whose tattoo the feral
woman had on her abdomen. Once deep in the bush of the jungle the
caravan run into all sorts of nasty beasties like snakes, leeches and
such. But always find the time to have sex no matter what dangers lay
Joe D' Amato and Laura Gemser team up once again for their best 'Black Emanuelle" yet. How can you go wrong with all the lovely ladies who doff their duds in this one (including the gorgeous Mónica Zanchi)? Never does the film lose its sexiness or graduate into gaudy hardcore. "Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals" is pure cannibal goodness with a seriously sexy slant. Yum!
"Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals" is a sleazy cannibal exploitation sickie made by Joe D'Amato.It has lovely Laura Gemser plus plenty of soft core sex,some nasty gut munching and gore.The soundtrack by Nico Fidenco is quite effective.Laura Gemser plays a journalist Emanuelle who joins an expedition into the darkest and deepest corners of the Amazon after the patient in the lunatic asylum turns out to be sporting cannibal tattoo.The film is loaded with long scenes of sex and masturbation and there are some pretty sadistic gore scenes added for good measure."Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals" isn't bad by any means,so anyone who likes sleazy Italian exploitation cinema won't be disappointed.Recommended.7 out of 10.
Well, I'll tell ya one thing. Considering it's only 1976, these ain't
the last cannibals, by any means. However, the legendary Emanuelle,
along with her love scenes are present and ready for anything these
bloodthirsty primitives throw at her! I've always been a fan of the
films of Joe D'amato. Films like Beyond The Darkness and Anthropophagus
are some of the most disturbing, and all around best that vintage
Italian Exploitation has to offer. But I didn't realize until recently
that D'amato's body of work extends to yet another sub-genre. Anyway,
welcome back to the jungle.
Emanuelle, Journalist/nympho, is working undercover in a hospital. She comes across a girl who was evidently raised by a tribe of Amazonian cannibals. Emanuelle and pals somehow end up in the Amazon. As if that's gonna help anything. As usual, they end up regretting their adventurous nature.
And I'd just love to tell you that Emanuelle And The Last Cannibals is some kind of a gruesome, gory bloodbath, which includes mutilations and castrations like its counterparts, but sorry, not today. And not the usual trapped/hopeless/nightmarish vibe, either. This one is about the love scenes.
Yet, the movie is still semi-gory. So, ultimately, everyone wins... Ya know what? I take that back. And here's why. It just occurred to me that Joe D'amato has thrown xxx love scenes in a number of his films. Not to mention he's made a lot of gore flicks that would put this particular one to shame.
So, tell me, what exactly stopped the man from making Emanuelle And The Last Cannibals a gore-drenched Jungle-Porno... The cannibal masterpiece! But no! Wasn't meant to be. I was ready to give this one an 8/10, but I guess that wasn't meant to be, either. So, 7 it is!
Now,don't think I'm not recommending this, as 7 is still respectable, but it just happens to be lacking in the obvious jungle gore qualities. But, see it!. By all means, definitely see it! Just make sure you see the others, too. Jungle Holocaust and Cannibal Ferox would be a good start. But if it's the love scenes that you're all about, then you might be happy to know that there's an actual Emanuelle series. Emanuelle In America, Emanuelle In Bangkok, Women's Prison Massacre. So, if you're looking for Sexploitation, only. There you go. Otherwise, the last cannibals are waiting! 7/10
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