(2008) dir. Marcel Sarmiento, Gadi Harel
I’d been on a little horror jag for the day, not planned, though I’d queued all the films up and they were all sitting here, waiting to be watched. No planning. No plan. The only theme being that they were recent horror films. I’d watched the moderately entertaining Norwegian nazi zombie film Dead Snow (2009) and followed it up with the ridiculously disgusting and comic Ti West film Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever (2009) and I had Deadgirl on tap, actually having gotten interested in it having seen a trailer for it on the DVD of The House of the Devil (2009), Ti West’s other film from 2009.
The parallels built themselves, oddly enough. This film, as in Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever featured both actor Noah Segan, hero of the former, villain of the present. And also, the actor Michael Bowen showed up again, this time as a drunken mom’s boyfriend rather than gay high school principal, but you know…how often are you going to watch two films back-to-back with those two actors in it? That’s like the 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon thing or something.
Deadgirl is a strange premise. Actually, I would say that the premise is perhaps the most strange because of the accepted behavior of the two lead teenage boys, Segan and his buddy, our hero, Shiloh Fernandez. So, two teens go drinking beer and raising hell in an abandoned mental hospital (we’ve all done that, right?) And their explorations uncover (literally) a naked woman, strapped down to a table deep in a basement.
Rather than immediately seeking the help of police or trying to rescue her, Segan suggests that they “keep” her. While Fernandez is scandalized by this, he doesn’t turn his buddy in, but goes home to brood over this and the all-American girl he yearns for who hardly knows he’s alive. But Segan seeks him out and tells him that he’s made a discovery. The girl is dead. But can’t be killed. He’s tried. She can’t be killed.
Turns out that Segan has been fucking around with the deadgirl and discovered, after choking her to death and breaking her neck 3 times that she, much like the Energizer bunny, just keeps on going. And he proves this to Fernandez by plugging her with a couple of bullets. So, this is when he gets the idea that this deadgirl isn’t really human and should be kept for a sex slave. A continually rotting, more and more disgusting, sex slave.
Okay, this is the thing. The concept is putrid. And perhaps even more putrid than the concept is the fact that the writers and directors of this film seem to think that while our hero “has issues” with this, he not only does nothing, but there are several other fellows who think that raping a living corpse is just peachy. Is this really concieveable? I mean, I know we’re dealing with a living corpse but the regular people, are they believeable? Would no one run to the authorities, wonder who she was/is, try to find her the help she needs? Not empathize with the amoral horny teenagers? And would teenagers so gladly embrace necrophilia?
That’s what we’ve got here. Necrophilia and teenagers. Torn from the headlines.
The bottom line is that the plausibility of this world is just too much to make. And the fact that the authors consider the morality of the human teenager to be so suspect as to believe that they’ll fuck anything (including her pus-oozing bullet wounds — No Shit!) is just beyond my ability to believe. I mean to believe that one, really fucked up and alienated teenager might go to such extremes or that even say two might…well fucked up shit does happen, but when even your moral pillar, your hero, as much as he turns his prudish nose up at it ultimately (in the happy? ending) seems to take to his own deadgirl, you just have to say “what the fucking fuck?”
What I liked about the film was its far extremity of bad taste and subject matter, and even its twisted scenario in which something so crazy is the setting for the story. But it’s too much to take that everyone is so fucking disgusting and amoral that raping a living corpse is a good time (to be had by all comers). It’s sick. Not sick like the gross-out Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever special effects and pus and ooze (though it has its small share) but sick in the way that it just assumes that it makes sense that no one went to the police to report such fucking strange and bizarre phenomena as a living dead woman.
This film, while reasonably interesting, I’ve found to be quite morally repugnant. And maybe coming from someone who can enjoy such a gross-out flick as Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever, maybe that means nothing. But on the other hand, who is this film for? Is it for those lonely teens who wish, wish, wish that they had their own living dead girl to enact sexual deviance upon? To gang rape a corpse?
Excuse me. Puke.