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An artist finds and rescues a mermaid in a sewer. He takes her home with him and she develops sores all over her body that begin to pustulate and bleed. He uses what oozes from her sores to paint her portrait. When he can no longer handle it anymore he breaks down and dismembers her body. Written by
Chris Mayo <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Originally part of the notorious underground video series GUINE PIG (which came to the public's attention when actor Charlie Sheen mistook an episode for an actual snuff movie), GUINEA PIG: MERMAID IN A MANHOLE is the only one to have gained a cult status outside of the series' infamy. People unfamiliar with the series need only know that it is largely made up of extremely gruesome, brutal and realistic footage of people (mostly women) being tortured, mutilated and murdered (sometimes self-inflicted). Guinea Pig 2: Flowers of Flesh and Blood (the one that sparked the Sheen controversy) is a 45 minute long video in which a woman is graphically dismembered and disemboweled. MERMAID has aspirations beyond simply grossing its viewers out (though it doesn't skimp on that), and goes more for a David Cronenberg-esque atmosphere of disease and decay, meant to disturb as much as repulse. The story involves an artist who gets his ideas from items he finds in the sewer. One day, while rooting around for inspiration, he comes across a real live mermaid. She is injured and sick, from years of living in all the filth and muck. He takes her back to his apartment and places her in his bathtub, where she slowly begins to rot. He paints her as her condition worsens. Sores appear all over her body and erupt in multi-colored pus, which he uses (at her request) to continue painting the portrait. Blood, slime and worms squirm out of her skin. She vomits worms and slime. Eventually, her intestines burst out of her body and ooze onto the floor. It's really, really gross. All through this he continues to paint her picture. Blood-drenched and nightmarishly bizarre, but with moments of dark, offbeat humor sprinkled throughout. If you have the stomach for it, and you can find it, this is an interesting little movie for fans of bizarre and/or grotesque cinema. Easily the best of the Guinea Pig series.
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