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A Serbian Film - My Initial Thoughts Moments After The Film's End

NOTE TO READERS: there are spoilers in this rant, read on at your own risk!


Dear A Serbian Film,

I am writing you this letter to express my concerns about myself.

As you know, the people who have seen you are profoundly disturbed... and I don't mean that they are sick individuals, I mean that they are upset by your contents. Rape, torture, and murder often leave movie audiences feeling disgusted. You, to your credit, attempted to make each of those horrors as profoundly disturbing as you possibly could. I understand that the Serbian film makers of this generation are truly affected by war time atrocities and the results on society. I understand that your efforts were great in making audiences feel like co-conspirators in each gross misuse of human flesh throughout your run time.

I'd like you to know that I, honestly, am less "moved" than I probably should be.

It is possible, although doubtful to me, that I have simply seen one too many horror films or that I have witnessed one too many news broadcasts in my lifetime. There is a chance, that my heart is so cold and my nature so truly sociopathic that I simply cannot feel anything human...

There's another option; that I just cannot muster up real emotions for fictional events. And that, my dear film, is most likely the case. While you did your best to make your effects realistic, they were still fake. And you were still "just a movie".  I'm not prone to averting my eyes and my stomach is strong; while raping a newborn, on paper sounds horrible, on film it just plays as ridiculous. Logically, in my head, I know why this moment should be horrifying - yet I sat and watched, impassively. Try as you might, you did not reach me.

Actually, while I watched you, I couldn't help thinking that you were simply what 8MM would have been, had it been made outside the US. I couldn't help my inclination that you wanted to draw in the audiences that made shlock like Hostel popular. I completely respect your social commentary - which your director claims is all "made up" by audiences - but I also am impressed by your business sense; you know who is going to pay out to see this movie and your director, who had independent investors, will clearly make back, in spades, every penny he spent.

So congratulations, on being just another in a long line of exploitation films. And double congrats on helping bring back "splatter cinema".  And really, truly, I'd like to applaud your use of the time honored horror stylings of the grand guignol.

Well done.

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