Dr. Heiter, a surgeon renowned for his work with Siamese twins, decides he’d really like to sew three people together, using their mouths and anuses as the junctions.
Yes, that’s right. The Human Centipede (First Sequence) is a real contender for feel-good picture of the year.
So the good doctor lives in the German countryside, watching diligently for “patients.” We follow the story from the perspectives of two young American women, who are looking for a trendy nightclub when they get lost. They are vaguely slutty, as well as bottomless pits of abject stupidity.
(Yeah, that’s not a horror movie cliché.)
How could I not expect it to be awful? But I hoped it would be awful on its own confidently dictated terms. Instead, it disintegrates between the two worlds it could plausibly inhabit. It’s a little bit too disturbing to be reliably goofy, but it’s way too goofy to really disturb you. Dieter Laser’s Dr. Heiter is dialed up two clicks past self-parody, and then wrenched around another half turn and the knob ripped off. I’ve already been over the women. The pan/follow camera work is frequently exaggerated beyond reason. The film could have used twice as many stock shots as it has.
What else? I’d say that people who enjoy this kind of thing will find this the kind of thing they enjoy, mostly because I think that’s a funny expression. You know, though, it’s not true. I love a good sick horror flick, and this just doesn’t make it. I think it wants to get under you as something like Hostel would. Might it be that the premise, as wild as it is, just isn’t enough to sustain an hour and a half?
Just read about it, find a few stills from it, and laugh about it with a buddy. You’ll enjoy that much more than actually watching the film.
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