* Prices may differ from that shown
This was and still is by far the most disturbing film iv ever seen. My boyfriend decided that after being together a few months the time was right to show me this film. This film was that nasty I had to stop half way through to have a fag, but had to continue out of curiosity. The story line is actually pretty good considering its content but the you can't really concentrate on that because of all the disgusting things that happen. If you think the first half is bad the second half will make your skin crawl. The final few scenes almost had me in tears with how shocked and disgusted I was. Not for the faint hearted. Made me feel queezy afterwards, as you just can't believe what you've just watched. I wouldn't watch it again but I advice those who are curious to give it ago. Have the cigarettes at the ready!
I refuse to go into detail of the film, as you can find very descriptive details online, so here I will just give my general view on the film as a whole.
I was introduced to the film by my sister, who told me that it was so disturbing I wouldn't believe her so I had to watch it.
It starts of pretty slow, just coming across as weird with a little boy watching his dad perform in certain 'adult' films. However, don't be fooled as it soon turns into the most disturbing thing you would have probably ever watched.
I love horror films, so thinking this was of the similar nature I thought I could stomach what I was about to see. I was very wrong! Half way through i had to go and sit outside with a fag, as I was just physically sick. Then on re-entering the room i refused to watch anymore, but I was told that I needed to just so I could see where the film ended. I shouldn't have, as surprisingly the film developed to be even more disturbing.
Do not watch this film if you haven't got a strong stomach to stop yourself from throwing up. Also don't watch it if your an emotional person as this will definitely mess your head up!
WARNING - this review contains terminology that could be offensive to some. The nature of this film, I feel requires an equally graphic review. I have tried to keep spoilers to a minimum. Please do not continue if easily offended.
There is a line.
Anyone who has read any of my reviews, will know that I have a great interest in film, and especially in any film that has a reputation for being over the top and nasty. It started as a fascination in the films from the so called video nasty period, and has continued on to modern day films. Anything that has pushed the boundaries will eventually get a watch from me, and as a result I will formulate an opinion on it.
The film industries have had boundaries since it began. Scenes such as rape, child molestation, extreme and unnecessary violence, the male form in a state of sexual arousal, ejaculation and animal cruelty are such boundaries, all of which have been broken. Solo, for its scenes of sodomy and child molestation, 9 songs for its famous ejaculation scene, cannibal holocaust for its rape, and animal cruelty. Here are only three films, and yet several of the ancient boundaries have been broken. So where is film to go now? Where will the extremist directors move on to, in order to continue to push the boundaries and shock us further? The answer is that they make up a completely new genre, allowing them to bring scenes so graphic and shocking that they have no predecessor to compete with. That is exactly what Srdan Spasojevic did in 2010, when he made the infamous little 'A Serbian film'.
The main two players in this film are Sedan Todorovic who plays Milos, and Sergej Trifunovic who plays Vukmir.
OK, so Milos is an ex porn star, who has left all that behind to become a family man. An old porn star friend approaches milos, and tells him of a businessman called Vukmir, who is making an art house film, and that he wants Milos to star in it. Although Milos does not want to go back to that type of life, he decides that the huge pay day offered will set him up for the rest of his life, so he decides to do it against his better judgement.
Contract signed, Milos is taken to an orphanage and meets a little girl, who he is shown seductively eating an ice lolly. Milos is pleasured by a nurse, and is then instructed through an earpiece by Vukmir to receive the same from the little girls mother while she watches. Milos refuses but is forced to continue. Milos meets with Vukmir, who describes to the actor his artistic vision. He shows milos a video of a woman giving birth, only for the new born to be raped. This vision of Vukmirs 'newborn porn' is too much to Milos.
Milos wakes up three days later, covered in blood and druggeb to the hilt. Its only now that this film gets going. The scenes I have described so far are the tip of a very bloody iceberg. I do not wish to put them into my own words, both to prevent spoilers for those who want to see the film, and also for the fact that it is truly vile.
My two cents.
As I have stated, I like gore. I like films that push the boundaries. I like to be shocked. This film however does cross that line. Every boundary is broken, and new ones are made and they bare broken too. We get abuse, rape, sodomy, necrophilia, blood, guts and spit by the bucket load. We get the new concept of newborn porn, which truly disgusted me. This was simply made to disgust. The film holds very little in terms of a story. The effects, though truly bloody, are not superb. The acting is for the most part poor. What it does do well, is disgust.
If I analyse this film, I can just about make an artistic link between a Serbian film, and Serbia as a country. Milos being forced to do things against his own will in his drugged state can be likened to how the government forces the everyday people of Serbia to act out of character. That said, the link is tenuous to say the least. It was perhaps used to allow the film to come into creation, but the content that went into the piece itself is nothing short of an abomination.
I do not easily get shocked. I have watched, and in seen champion Cannibal holocaust. I have seen almost every slasher, and torture film imaginable. The content in this film makes the other look like films you would put on for you kids to watch. I struggle to find any reason for you to watch it, unless like me, you like to be shocked. This one went too far though, and the little tingle of excitement I usually feel from a scary film, was replaced by a churning in my stomach as I watched through squinted eyes.
I read reviews, as well as write them, and one review I read contained a line that I wish to share, and receive no credit for. The writer said 'you cannot unwatch a Serbian film'. How right he was. This film lingers in the mind like a door to door salesman with his foot in your doorway. You really want to get rid of them, but try as you might, you just can't. By all means watch this film, but do not go into it with rose tinted glasses. This is a tough watch, and will stick with you for a while. Beware.
I will not divulge details of the film, I will only give a general insight.
This film is disgusting, they try to make out there is a point to the film, but I really don't feel that there is - it seems to be revolting for the sake of being revolting. Please heed my warning, if you have any sensitivity this film will most likely disturb in some way.
Spoiler Alert? I don't know, I think the spoiler would be not to tell you this.
The films main character is a retired porn star, he has a wife and son and is offered, by his brother, a decent sum of money to be involved in one final film.
He is asked to do some weird, disgusting things which he refuses, he is drugged and in his stupor performs a lot of acts which I really don't want to write about. I doubt it would ruin the 'story' but it involves very aggressive rape scenes, some scenes involving children and necrophilia. Enough said?
You are told at the start the actions taken are due to circumstances in Serbia but I find that irrelevant, I would rather live on the streets than even be forced to watch this abomination again!
You may see this as a poor review, that's because it's not really a review, it's a warning, DON'T WATCH IT!! If you want to know more, check wikipedia, it tells you everything and will save you a lot of heart ache. Think human centipede x 1,000,000.
You will see I have given it one star. It does not deserve even that.
I have been intrigued by this film for a while, I love horrors and thrillers and all sorts of strange films and the moment someone tells me a film is shocking I feel that I have to see it, just to see if it really can shock me.
Following watching it I would say that whilst the content is shocking and there were a couple of bits that were difficult to watch, personally I wasn't absolutely horrified by it, which I feel is due to the way the film is made and the fact that it is supposed to be awful - it isn't horror (if that it what you would call it) for the sake of it, there is a point. At the start of the DVD there was an explanation of what the film is really all about, which is basically to do with the terrible state of things in Serbia with regards to the 'powers that be' and the way that people have to live their lives in such a controlled and often unpleasant manner in current times. Without knowing much about Serbia myself I couldn't fully appreciate this but I got the general gist of it which was that the film is meant to be a metaphor that we are 'raped' by the system right from birth & throughout our whole lives, it is not to be taken literally. For this reason I was comfortable watching it - plus we must remember they are only acting after all!!
Having said all of this, if you are at all sensitive or easily offended then there is little point in watching this film! To give yopu a rough idea of what you may be offended by this film contains scenes of porn, torture, necrophilia, snuff movies and paedophilia as well as a large helping of gore. It doesn't show more than it needs to but it may well offend many people.
The story revolves around an ex porn star who is now retired and is happily living with his wife and young son. However due to serious debt problems he is tempted by an offer of making one last film which will pay him enough money to secure his family's future. The catch is that he does not know what the film is about and the director refuses top tell him as he says that knowing would spoil the film. He is clear that it will be pornographic but other than that he has no idea. He is collected by car for filming each day and is sometimes blindfolded on the way. On his first day he is dropped off at an old warehouse looking place which turns out to be an orphanage, I won't spoil it for you but basically his first day of filming is very bizarre and he starts to have doubts. After two days he asks his brother, a bent copper, to look into the background of the director and the crew, though this doesn't bring back any useful info. Eventually he decides he wants to quit the film, but this isn't as easy as it seems, as he has signed the contract the director tries all he can to convince him to continue. At this point the film takes an even sinister turn as our main guy wakes up on his bed at home covered in blood having lost a couple of days and starts to retrace his steps to find out what on earth has happened. This is done through a series of flashbacks and whilst pretty graphic and shocking it is done very well.
The ending (last ten minutes or so) is particularly disturbing. But then if you've managed to watch the rest of it that shouldn't come as too big a shock! I did wonder what the film must have been like when it was first made before the censors had been at it and a undoubtably large amount of the film had been cut out, as it is amazing that it has been allowed to be released as it is, considering some other films which have been banned.
All in all I enjoyed it, I was sufficiently shocked without being upset and I would receommend it to those of a hardened nature who enjoy watching films that are a bit different and take things one step further. It isn't that often I give a film 5 stars but for me it did exactly what it set out to do and unashamedly stuck two fingers up at political correctness and social norms along the way.
There is a reason why this film has been banned in so many countries. there is a reason why this film has shocked so many millions. Watching this film is a real commitment. Not only are you committing to have to think about the film day after day while it etches itself into your brain, but you are also committing to watching 2 hours of absolute horror.
There are the plus sides though, although the film lacks and real strong narrative, the camera work and cinematography suite the setting and narrative perfectly. The cinematographer obviously put in a lot of work to suit the color gradient and shot composition to the characters and setting that the film followed. The film followers and ex porn star lured into a dodgy job for millions. Not until joining up does he see what this job really entails, and maybe then, its to late!
An incredible film, shocking to the core, but worth a watch for die hard film fans.
*Due to the nature of this film, my review does contain some information that some people may find upsetting, so reader discretion is advised. I have tried to be as subtle as possible but i'd be aware that some people may find my review somewhat graphic.*
A Serbian Film is a horror film directed by Srdan Spasojevic. I had heard alot of stuff about this film from friends (mainly male!) who were either raving about how great it was or warning people not to watch it. I am the sort of person who isn't hugely affected by horror films, I see them as simply being full of fake blood, special effects and creepy music, however this film really did bother me and I wouldn't class it as a horror - it's more of a perverted porn film with disgusting contents - I can't believe that someone allowed this film to be made even after reading page one of this script, and I really do question how sane the person who wrote the film is!
The film's main character is a semi retired porn star, Milos, who's seen better days, he's struggling for work but isn't keen on the idea of getting back into porn due to now being a family man and having a child and wife. Then, his former co-star comes along and offers him a deal he can't resist - a large sum of money in return for featuring in an art film being directed by a porn director. Due to the amount of money involved, Milos agrees and sees it as a way of securing his and his families' financial future.
The film moves at a very fast paced and before long Milos is in the creepy abandoned factory type building, which we later find out is an orphanage. This is where the first porn scene takes place with an abused woman who lost her husband in the war. The men who are the producers and guards verbally abuse her while an unsure Milos looks on, before letting her preform oral sex on him. Needless to say, he's quite enjoying this until an image pops up on the TV infront of him showing a young girl (the abused woman's daughter) putting on makeup and eating an ice lolly. By now, Milos knows that something is very wrong and attempts to get away, but he is restrained by the guards and forced to carry on.
By now, it is made clear that Milos is not a bad guy, he refuses to partake in paedophilic acts and as a result he wins the audience's trust and I for one was hoping that he would be able to find a way out of being in such a controlled situation in which he was being drugged up with viagra type drugs which made him like a vicious rapist. He does definetly start out as being the good guy but as the film progresses and he descends into a world of rape and murder while high on drugs, his likeability disintergrates.
The film is extremely graphic and at times I seriously cosidered turning it off - if it hadn't been for my friend I would of, however he was really intrigued and kept telling me to keep watching it, which was really hard because of the brutal and perverted themes which even included a baby, which was born just minutes before being subjected to a horrific ordeal that really was sickening to watch. I knew that it wasn't a real baby, but I still felt extremely sick and I did have to look away.
Other disturbing scenes include torture, rape, murder, necrophilia and incest, and the film really is disgusting. I watched it once and that was enough - it stuck in my mind for days and really made me feel quite depressed to be honest, I really do not understand what would posess anyone to make such a vile film, and I can see why it caused such a huge amount of contraversy and why it was banned in certain areas.
I know that it is just acting but I really hated the main character by the end of the film, even though none of the events that took place were actually his fault. I really can not believe any actor would agree to be part of such a vile film and I certainly won't be watching this again. The CGI is very good though, the blood and gore is realistic as are the scenes in which people are tortured/murdered, in fact they're a bit TOO real.. it really is a disturbing film and one I would not reccomend unless you want to be emotionally scarred - i'd give it zero stars if I could!
the phrase "you cant un-see it once you've seen it" comes to mind.this film is exploitation at it's purest, how this film was even allowed to be sold on British shores shocks me...i would strongly recommend avoiding this film, it is vile and disgusting, and the makers of this film should be ashamed of them self's for even being able to make this.i have watched many many films, but there have only been 3 that have made me physically feel sick, and this is one of them.
=WARNING this review contains descriptions and makes reference to extreme sexual encounters and violence. Please do not read on if you are easily offended, or do not wish to read about such things. Thank you=
I am a huge fan of all horror films from the classics to the more recent torture porn genre so when I heard about this film I decided to watch it for two reasons: firstly, to see what it was about and secondly whether it was as graphic as it was billed to be. I decided to be bold and watch the full, uncut version - the British Board of Film Classification had removed 4 minutes for the film to be shown in the UK making it the most cut film in the last 30 years. The fact that they did this has already made it a cult classic.
The film was released in 2010 and is billed as a horror film. It was directed by the Serbian Srdan Spasojevic and the main stars are Srdan Todorovic and Sergej Trifunovic. The film is in Serbian with English subtitles.
The film is based around an ageing porn star named Milos who was once the best in the business. He lives with his wife, Marija and young son Peter. He has been able to forget about his porn past and is living a happy life until a porn star named Lejla approaches him and tells him that he has been offered a large sum which will set him up for life if he agrees to star in an 'art film' to be directed by a businessman named Vukmir. He agrees to meet Vukmir at an orphanage and this is when everything gets pretty nasty. He is forced to rape a physically abused woman while a young girl dressed as Alice from Alice in Wonderland watches. He is then shown footage of a new born baby being raped.
Having witnessed this, he runs away to his car and drives off and is approached by Vukmir's doctor at a road junction. He then wakes up three days later with no memory of what happened over the previous three days. He goes back to the orphanage and finds video tapes which help him to piece together what happens. These tapes show him being drugged and then raping and attacking women, being forced to kill a woman and proceeding to have sex with her corpse. He is also filmed being raped by another man and then raping a child who is covered by blankets. The film then begins to tie up but I won't say anymore than this otherwise it would ruin the film if you decided to watch it, but expect a few twists.
This film is very gruesome - quite unlike anything I've ever seen before, nor do I particularly wish to see anything like it again. It is very brutal and sadistic with lots of blood squirting everywhere (as well as other things) and is very violent - particularly the ending which is probably the worst part of the film. There are quite a few deaths at the end which are brutal, sadistic and worse than any Saw trap imaginable. I won't say what happens but be rest assured that it is pretty disgusting and again is something I've never seen before in a film.
Wider Social Issues
This film is billed as just another torture porn movie but on a much higher and more extreme level than others such as Saw and Hostel, but I do agree with the director when he said "This is a diary of our own molestation by the Serbian government" and even though it is so brutal there are definitely hidden messages included. It does reflect the oppression of the Serbian people as in the same way, Milos is forced to carry out all of these actions under the influence of drugs and he is not able to say no. I think it is wrong to view this film as an extreme torture porn film and nothing else - far more is added to it.
I think that the film has redefined the torture porn genre and has set another limit which will once again have to be broken. It makes the likes of Saw and Hostel seem like kids' movies in comparison. I am surprised that the BBFC agreed to let this movie be released, particularly since they banned the Human Centipede 2 which sounds no where near as graphic or as brutal as this film. I think though that this film is likely to lead to another set of torture porn films which will push the limit even further than this film, there may even be a sequel, who knows?
The film is worth a watch if you want to see what all the fuss and hype is about. If you have a weak constitution and still decide to watch it then make sure you have eaten several hours before - this is certainly not a suitable film to watch with pop corn and Coke! It is rated an 18 and I would not recommend that anyone under the age of 18 should see this film as it could cause nightmares. Just remember though that it is just a film should you be having any nightmares!
The DVD or Blu Ray can be purchased from high street stores or online and varies in price from about £6 - £12 for the DVD and up to as much as £18 for the Blu Ray.
Thank you for reading my review.
I'll start off this review by saying that although I watched this it does not automatically make me sick like many people believe watching this film means. I watched this film due to the talk it had gathered around my friend circle. The film itself is fairly slow at the beginning however soon the viewer is pulled into the film. I should warn the viewers that this film contains very upsetting and disturbing scenes that can cause offence. I won't give away spoilers but i found myself struggling to watch some scenes. The storyline itself has some good points and it is this reason as to why I believe the film is okay. At times you want to turn away however the director has done a good job at pulling in the viewer as they are intrigued. Whilst I cannot say i thoroughly enjoyed this film I also cannot say that I hated this film. This film will definitely split opinion between groups of friends.
There seems to be a new trend in exploitation films, and that is too actually make them good. With the popularity of Hostel and Saw, the infamy of The Human Centipede and foreign cult classics like Audition and Martyrs, a lot of the most unsettling films made in the 21st century are well directed, well acted and are even use have high quality visuals and audio. Except The Human Centipede.
A Serbian Film is firmly lodged in my mind's top three disturbing movies and it doesn't use shock tactics or ultra violence to draw you in at first, but instead uses an interesting plot device in which a middle aged but still capable male porn star is persuaded into making an 'artsy' porno graphybecause of his lack of funds. What ensues, usually to a mix of a haunting, subtle soundtrack or hardcore sex sounds, is a surreal journey into depravity in which the viewer is left as confused as the protagonist. Strange scenes of women being beaten, then worse, are shown to be done routinely by the director's henchmen and then Milos himself as he becomes, via drugs and manipulation, increasingly under control of the company, who 'Make films no one else will, for special clients.'
The viewer is treated to a mix of seeing a happy, humble home life for Milos and then of course violent, depraved, illegal sex acts committed by this mysterious film company. Also a disturbing twist to the genre is, most of the victims in the film seem quite happy to be abused and mistreated in this way and during the porn scenes you become absolutely emerged in the extreme of psychological depravity, you feel dirty by the time the credits start rolling. In fact, all the surrealist violence seems so matter of fact and formal throughout, it takes a dead body being sodomised to shake you out of the trance.
I went into the film blind, without knowing any specifics and I urge you to do the same, as the twist at the end hits you like a freight train of disgust and even though it isn't particularly graphic or gory, WILL leave itself imprinted in your mind. I can't see many films beating this in terms of balancing the worst horror set pieces imaginable with both original and intriguing dialogue and plot. It won't crush your soul entirely, but the faint hearted might not want to watch it to the finale, but most of us always will due to mere morbid curiosity. After all, to quote the film, 'Victim is the priciest sell in this world'.
A review of the cut version of the film currently available to buy in the UK. Please be aware that this contains descriptions and discussions that are of an adult nature, if such subject matters are likely to offend you then please do not read any further. To gain a BBFC certificate rating over 4 minutes of footage had to be removed from the film before it could be released in the UK thus giving the film the rather dubious accolade of being the most cut release in 30 years.
Retired Porn actor Milos has given up his acting career and now lives with his wife and young son in Serbia. Getting on in years and no longer having a regular income the money he made from his films is dwindling fast, his son needs money for singing lessons and Milos wants to provide for his family. Out of the blue he is approached by a former colleague and friend Layla who has a proposition for him, someone she knows wants to make a different kind of porn film and Milos renowned as once being the best in the business is wanted as the star. Tempted by the proposition he agrees to a meeting with the film's director - Vukmir- to discuss the film but is concerned to find out that there is no script, instead the director's vision of the film is all about capturing Milos reaction to what he is faced with. Reluctantly deciding that the money is just too good to turn down he agrees to star in the film however once filming begins and Milo is given an earpiece to receive his directions he soon realises that this isn't going to be any ordinary porn film...
Occasionally there comes along a film that gets people talking and even before 'A Serbian Film' had hit the UK there was talk that this was _the_ film any horror fan should see. I couldn't avoid the speculation around the film or the controversies of what was apparently depicted on the horror websites I visited and eager to see what all the fuss was about I spent some time reading the write-ups that appeared on-line from people who had seen the film never expecting it to be released in any form in the UK. Reminiscent of the furore surrounding the video-nasties of the early 80's 'A Serbian Film' had certainly courted controversy, "The most extreme horror film ever!", some declared, "Too Shocking to be seen!" said others yet amazingly the BBFC (British Board of Film Classification) passed the film to be released for retail and rental earlier this month albeit in a heavily cut form, so lights off, sound turned up and cushion to hide behind at the ready I settled down to watch the 'most controversial film ever' last night and to my astonishment it _almost_ lived up to the hype.
The type of film this actually is is only ever going to appeal to a minority of people and casual horror film watchers will quite rightly be appalled at the events that take place on screen, however, I would say that if you can get past the extreme visuals in the film and view it as the director intended then this could be described as a film with a message. It is a social commentary which dips a dirty toe into the world of a small niche of society who demand _real_ violence and are willing to pay to see it, the director in the film has an audience to satisfy and essentially he is filming a 'snuff' film, except the actor hired to play the leading man doesn't know it and the deeper he goes into this world the harder it is for him to get out of it. There are obvious parallels from what we are presented with in the film and what we as the audience are actually doing by watching it in the first place, whilst Milos is the unwilling star of his own film and doesn't know what is going to happen next we as the owners of this DVD/Blu-Ray don't know what is going to happen either so are paying to see Milos' reaction. It struck me that there are obvious similarities between Spasojevic's fictional director Vukmir and of Spasojevic himself in that they are both providing what their audience demands and for these 'film within a film' elements that feature during the latter stages of the film this is really quite clever and thought provoking.
Of course many people won't actually see the parallels and will focus on the extreme nature of the film which more than lives up to the disgust it seems to have provoked. The film is ultra-violent at times and plays out with brutal ferocity although for the most part isn't anything that we haven't seen before in other recent extreme cinema releases, what causes the most controversy though and what gave the BBFC the most trouble when passing the film was the extreme accounts of sexual violence contained and anyone who is familiar with how the BBFC operates will know that there are some things that just cannot be shown on film as far as the censors are concerned.
===The wrong type of violence===
Blood and guts are usually ok, films such as Hostel and Irreversible pushed the tolerance levels of horror fans and pretty much desensitised us to extreme accounts of violence. Indeed the term 'torture porn' summed up a whole sub-genre of horror films from recent years but never before have I seen a BBFC passed film feature as much sexual violence as A Serbian Film. This is the last taboo to be broken and even in its cut form there are unflinching scenes of rape and even necrophilia contained in the films running time, the very fact that the 'star' of the film is portrayed as a porn actor should alert you to the fact that both male and female nudity is explicitly shown. I don't want to go into too much detail as to what the film actually contains as they are not only spoilers but are also unnecessary in this review all I would say is that you do need to have a strong stomach and a firm grip on reality to be able to realise that what you are watching _is_ a work of fiction even if it is still very hard to actually see so realistically presented.
I'm actually quite impressed at the BBFC for giving us the opportunity to see this film as they have been known in the past to issue outright bans of films they consider too shocking to see. As an adult I have always maintained that I, as anyone else, should have the right to see any film I want so long as it is fictional regardless of its content. I accept that A Serbian Film won't be to everyone's taste and I wouldn't expect it to be however giving the film a certificate and releasing it to the general public finally means that there is a shift in how the censors operate and I applaud them for allowing us to make our own choices in what we want to watch. Naturally the film is an 18 rating and earns this easily, it isn't mainstream and would have probably gone unnoticed had it not been the subject of so much controversy before its release, the 'extreme' parts make up very little of the film in all honesty but will undoubtedly be what the film ends up being infamous for which is a shame actually as overall there is plenty to admire about the film as a whole.
The running time and pacing is perfectly pitched with the first hour or so dedicated to introducing us to Milo and setting up the events that are to follow. It's only in the last 30 or 40 minutes when the brutality kicks in and the tension mounts that it becomes uncomfortable to watch and rather than bombarding us with scene after scene of extreme violence even these are relatively few and far between, it's what they actually _are_ which is far more shocking and unexpected rather than how often they appear. There are no familiar faces in the film and you will not know any of the actors (unless of course you are a follower of Serbian cinema) so because you don't know them and the depictions are so graphic there is a real sense that this may not be a fictional film after all. The dialogue is Croation and the film features English subtitles and there is hardness and grittiness to the cinematography, bleak is a good description of how the film is portrayed, greys and blues make up most of the palette which naturally makes a good contrast to the bright reds of the blood that is spilled. The latter stages of the film are brutal and unflinching and the ending in keeping with what you have already witnessed and if nothing else will be a film that you will remember for a long time after the credits have rolled. It isn't really a film to 'enjoy' as such and many will find no redeeming qualities in it whatsoever, for me it was a film to experience and to know that I have seen.
Was it the most shocking film ever? Well no, not really. It is tough going in places and features some things I never thought would be allowed to be shown in a film but it wasn't _that_ shocking and whilst I can see what all the fuss was about I have seen worse in other films. Would I recommend it? Yes I would, so long as you fully know what you are letting yourself in for before switching it on, read other reviews would be my advice if you are unsure if this is something that would be suitable for you. Chances are you will already be aware of the film if you are considering watching it anyway as outside of horror circles this is pretty much an unknown film and as already stated would never be considered mainstream. My only real criticism is that the film is cut and that there are over 4 minutes of footage that was unable to be included in this release, I would watch the film again but would wait for the complete film to be released and buy the film again in its uncut format.
A Serbian Film is available to buy online from amazon.co.uk in Blu-Ray format for £12.93; this is the version of the film I own and the one that I would recommend if you have a Blu-Ray player The DVD is available for a little under £11.00 so not that much different in terms of price. The fact that it is cut means that I am deducting a star from my rating but overall for actually delivering a film which had it not been cut would have lived up to its hype I'm awarding an excellent 4 star rating and had it been released uncut then it would have been 5 stars from me. It's not going to be for everyone and even some horror fans will be deeply disturbed by what they see here however if you can get past the distressing imagery and actually think about what the film is really about then there is plenty to gain from giving this an hour and a half's worth of your time.
Recommended. Thanks for reading my review, please note that this is also on ciao under my username
I searched for this film in the reviews just to see what comments were left and was surprised to see no-one had reviewed it. I suspect if you have seen it you probably turned it off. For those who haven't seen it let me explain why...
Serbian Film transcends previous attempts at provoking controversy by simply trampling over every film that ever tried to shock you. All the marketing keywords like gritty, raw, shocking and gruesome are just not suitable to prepare you for what is in store. I previously reviewed (sort of) 'Grotesque' which was a film I turned off for a moment before continuing, and that film was savage enough for me to think horror could go no further. I was wrong.
Horror generally breaks down into two categories, gore and psychological. The blood and guts thing has been well explored and with great commercial success but you are left wondering just how much worse it can get. In terms of psychological horror a good scare is great but difficult to achieve whilst maintaining critical credibility. So where to go with this film then?
Serbian Film takes acts that are grossly unimaginable and yet manages to graphically realise them leaving a dreadful sense of horror that is hard to fathom. What is depicted is not only vile but scarring. I have seen a lot of web references to various horror films which say 'don't watch because you can't unsee it' as some sort of marketing hype. With this film it is very true. And don't think I am hyping this film, this is a direct warning to give it a miss.
The plot centres around a retired porn star who is offered a chance to make a lot of money in a groundbreaking new film. Having falling on hard times he needs to accept to support his wife and son. Unfortunately the job evolves into something much darker than he ever expected and he tries to back out. The rich architect of the plan has no intention of losing his star, at any cost.
Themes are not intimated towards but rather explored to the full, disregarding decency and taste. Examples include misogynistic violence/humiliation, rape, murder, incest, paedophilia and necrophilia. You did read that right. Everything portrayed is uncompromising and as such, horrific.
I don't like censorship but this goes way beyond acceptability. It shouldn't be available really and anyone expressing these sort of ideas would be considered dangerous to the majority of sensible people. Obviously this is not suitable for anyone save for media/psychology students (perhaps) and psychopathic sex offenders.
*Edit* I should probably mention that the UK version has over 4 minutes of cuts which is a considerable amount as it addresses solely explicit scenes. The unrated version is available online if you must.
Leave well alone!