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Tatjana Paige Müller,
Janna Lisa Dombrowsky
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The Internet becomes a virtual shopping list for a man with an obsessive fetish for eating his fellow man. The technically inclined cannibal places a cyberspace advertisement for a willing victim, and his marketing efforts pay off when the gruesome madman receives a reply from eager prey. This macabre drama is a reenactment of the true story of Armin Meiwes, who was convicted of killing and eating his voluntary victim, Bernd-Jürgen Brandes. Written by
Sparse, economical, and surprisingly affective, this film wisely eschews exploitation to instead attempt an oddly serious and almost artistic analysis of the famous Meiwes case. Almost in 3 clinical acts (the hunt, the seduction, and the consumption), the film minimalistically explores the theme of sex as predation, consummation as consumption. It also superimposes Meiwes' favorite Grimm tale of Hansel and Gretel onto it as a frame, creating an odd fairy-tale for adults.
It is not an entertaining or pleasant film--but it works very ingeniously. With little to no dialog, the film creates a sense of unease and distaste in the audience through the simple use of frank male nudity, homoeroticism (which for some will seem more disturbing than the violence), and ritualistic slaughter and cannibalism implied cheaply and brilliantly with what appears to be almost no real special effects. Much of what we see is most likely the carcass of a pig, and yet we will feel like we are seeing much more.
The film also creates a sense of an actual relationship between the two men--not that they loved each other, but that they understood each other and each other's desires. The way they interact seems genuine and a part of the paradox of this case.
Shot using the simplest and cheapest of home equipment and with only 2 real actors, the film is also a testament to how successfully done an independent film can be. So little was needed to create this, and it all comes together very well.
Unlike American films like "Hard Candy", which try to moralize its themes to death, this film is far superior in its provocation. I'm not sure who else the audience for this film is, but for those to whom it works--it works almost perfectly.
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