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“I Spit on Your Grave”
a review by Darby O’Gill

Do you like rape? What am I saying? Of course you do! Who doesn’t? No, really. You’re going to have to be really okay with rape scenes if you’re even going to thinking about seeing this movie. I Spit on Your Grave is a remake of the 1978 grindhouse exploitation film Day of the Woman, which was later re-titled and released as I Spit on Your Grave in 1980. The movie was very much one of those movies you hear about in high school, and know you shouldn’t see it, so of course you’ll do anything to get your hands on a copy. Much like those Faces of Death videos. I of course watched the original back in high school, but can’t remember anything about it, other than the fact that it, like everything else, did not live up to the hype. So, when Shady and I went to the advanced screening of the current re-interpretation of I Spit on Your Grave a few months back, neither of us had any idea what we were walking into. We’re talking about almost forty minutes, if not more, of hardcore rape. And, I mean rape. Which is then followed by graphically violent revenge torture. Shady and I both have a pretty high tolerance for all things wrong, and even we were having a hard time sitting through this movie. I’m not kidding, people were leaving the theatre in waves throughout the screening, and by the end of the movie the full theatre was easily half empty. You know it’s bad when you’re filling out the questionnaire at the end of the movie, and when you get to the “What would make this movie better?” question, you actually find yourself writing “less rape.” With that said, Sarah Butler, the actress who plays the young victim, is outstanding! The things that she had to do for this movie are unbelievable, and the fact that she not only did them, but also was able to give a performance that would make even Meryl Streep envious, is simply amazing! Butler plays Jennifer, a young female novelist who has rented a reclusive cabin out in the middle of nowhere to get some writing done, and quickly becomes the fascination of four local men. As you can probably guess at this point, they brutally and graphically rape her. The tension and discomfort of the first half of this movie is sure to bother everyone, and I mean everyone! I don’t care how much you say nothing bothers you. If you can watch this movie without getting upset or truly uncomfortable, you’re either a sick freak or a soulless bastard. How do I know this? Because I was sitting with someone who would normally fit that description, and even he was both bothered and uncomfortable. The revenge torture in the second half is equally graphic and unsettling. But, it does seem to somehow manage to even out the scales somewhat with Jennifer getting her revenge. But with all of that said, I still think that some of the movie was really well done, for what it was. It’s really hard to say you enjoyed a movie about really graphic rape, and at times one step away from an exploitation snuff film, but there are a few things worth seeing in this remake of I Spit on Your Grave. Just be ready. I mean really, really, really ready.

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