Don’t throw up!: ‘The Human Centipede 2 (Full Sequence)’

The Human Centipede 2: Full Sequence (2011)

UNRATED

Director Tom Six hyped it up to be the most gruesome display the cinema world has ever seen. Give it a UR rating, ban it from British theaters, and quadruple the length of the infamous human centipede—to 12 people—and The Human Centipede 2 (Full Sequence) was probably just that.

In the same year that Jean Dujardin won the Oscar for Best Actor in a silent role, Lawrence R. Harvey speaks not a single word throughout HC2 (and you didn’t think I could connect The Human Centipede with The Artist) as Martin, a deranged pervert who lives with his mother in rural Britain. With his stone-faced expression, bug eyes, stout figure, and debilitating asthma, Martin strives to recreate the human centipede of the first movie, making it three times as long and bringing back actress Ashlynn Yennie (as herself) to recreate her role. His mental state is only worsened by his Freudian quack psychologist (Bill Hutchins) and suicidal mother (Vivien Bridson), who make up the largest portion of the film’s dialogue. Being a parking lot attendant, Martin has little accuracy when surgically attaching his victims anus-to-mouth (if this is a new concept, you missed the first film and all of its hype). And, of course, this only works for a while until his plan—and the duct tape he uses to connect his patients—unravels. What will become of Martin and his chain of fools? For that, you’ll have to endure the ghastly display of The Human Centipede 2.

Fans of The Artist will love that the film—on top of its silent star—is also entirely in black and white! For long chunks of time there was no dialogue at all, just 12 people crying or moaning and one man’s asthmatic breathing. And a lack of color disguises the low production budget and improves the look of the SFX. Trust me, with blood, feces, and a live birth, SFX are vitally important. And while some of the action (the anus-to-mouth not the least of it) is a tad unrealistic—multiple blunt force traumas to the skull that lead only to brief unconsciousness?—the SFX aren’t half bad.

Is Tom Six the nastiest man alive? Not since 2010’s Saw 3D have I been so close to vomiting during a film, and there were at least a handful of times where I averted my eyes from the screen for fear of spilling my own guts all over my television. It takes a sick man—“I try to be original,” Six says in a DVD bonus interview—to come up with these things. But in HC2, it remains mostly uneventful. It starts slowly, but necessarily, as Martin’s mother does most of the film’s talking. There isn’t much to do with people connected mouth-to-anus that wasn’t already done in the first film, so Six just makes the chain longer and hopes for the best. But it falls a bit short. Maybe next year’s HC3 can end this nasty trilogy with a fresh concept.

The Human Centipede 2 is torture porn at its best…or at least its most torturous and pornographic. What did you think of the movie? Will you be seeing the third one? Please don’t hold this review against me, but come back soon and thanks for reading!

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