Rosso sangue

Directed by Joe D’Amato

Reviewed by the Devil Himself ~ Deep Red

Aka Antropophagus 2 aka Monster Hunter aka The Grim Reaper 2 aka Zombie 6: Monster Hunter aka Horrible

OK, Absurd is Joe D’Amato’s follow-up to his grisly masterpiece Anthropophagus (1980). Where Anthropophagus is Zombie 7: Grim Reaper, Absurd, released the following year, is Zombie 6: Monster Hunter: see the article on Project DeadPost entitled ‘Zombi Series Explained (I Hope)’ by Lead Cenobite for details. Like its predecessor, Anthropophagus, this was one of 39 films successfully prosecuted under the Obscene Publications Act in the 1980s. It’s an Italian film, shot entirely in Italy but set in America.

A madman, Mikos Stenopolis (George Eastman), is disembowelled trying to escape from a priest (Edmund Purdom) and shows up at a family’s home, the Bennetts, but when taken to the hospital it is discovered that he has unnatural recuperative powers. He comes round and goes on a rampage.

I liked the way the antagonist in this and in Anthropophagus are both played by the same guy, George Eastman, and how they both come from a Greek island. OK, Eastman’s playing a different part but it makes a strange sort of connection between the two films. I only watched Anthropophagus last night so it was still in my mind what a terrifying individual this guy was in that, and he is in this too, great casting.

It’s a great film. Is it as good as Anthropophagus? Yes! And no. They’re both classics. Anthropophagus was definitely more eerie and just more damn strange (?) altogether but Absurd is a nicely nasty little slasher that does what it says on the tin. And the tin says ‘atmosphere and kills guaranteed’. I think I’ve said it before but as much as I love Halloween (1978) and Friday the 13th (1980), and I do love them, there are a host of other slashers that don’t get half the attention those two (and their sequels) do and should, and Absurd is one of them. Forget the dubbing, the Italians were masters of horror back in the day and a bit of dodgy dubbing is the fee, get over it and enjoy the masters at work is what I say. I’m sure a lot of you agree with me already, in a word – FULCI!Like Anthropophagus this does have a story, I say this because, I dunno really, for some reason I imagine because it’s on some stupid list that some people might think it’s just a gore show and nothing else. In my opinion that whole banned thing gives a false impression of the films on it entirely. Some filmmakers just went a little bit further I suppose and bothered some overly-sensitive people with their delivery of their crazy macabre visions. I appreciate a horror that sets out to be a horror, I think way too many modern films hold back. If old films could do it right, why is there so much shit about these days?

The most ‘absurd’ thing is that this film was banned, the second is that it isn’t out on Blu-ray strutting its high-def stuff. Great soundtrack, very nice gore, atmosphere. However it doesn’t have the originality of Anthropophagus, this has a lot slasher familiarity about it which at times leaves you wanting more kills, more gore – it is actually much gorier than either Halloween or Friday the 13th but on a much smaller canvas. Still, don’t be put off, this is a solid gold slice of cheap slasher and well worth checking out.