This week on the B movie docket is a bit of a two-parter. We have Mountain of the Cannibal God and Eaten Alive. Why the switch-up this week? Well, both films are about cannibals. Also, films like these are unlikely to be ever made again. And both share the same stock footage for scenes.
B movies are the glue stuck in between all the other genres, oftentimes refusing to conform to any particular genre presets. Some but not all of the hallmarks of a B movie include scripts that read like they were written by a room full of eighth-graders, poor visual effects, cringe-inducing dialogue, low budget production design, and zany plot contrivances. You’re aware of the hallmarks, right? B-movies often reek of amateur flair. Thought you were about to watch a great white shark hunted in dramatic fashion like only Steven Spielberg can deliver? Nope, this is Sharknado.
Why do we love B movies? I think B movies are comforting. You know what you’re about to watch is bad. If you’re fortunate it may be so bad that it’s good. You’ll often scratch your head trying to work out the plot. Out of the many good films you’ve seen, I bet you can talk with more vigor about the worst ones you’ve seen. They’re unforgettable. There’s something comforting about that I think. Besides they’ve been around just as long as the movie industry.
Believe it or not, chances are there’s a B movie for you. So I compiled a list of 50 B movies you must see before you die. No decade is off-limits. No rating is too taboo. For the next 49 weeks, I will introduce and recommend a B movie for your viewing pleasure. Yes, these are exciting times indeed my fanatical friends.
WEEK 11 – Mountain of The Cannibal God
This week’s movie is Mountain of the Cannibal God. The film was made in 1978 with all serious intentions. One thing you notice is that it is an exploitation film right off the bat. There’s an actual disclaimer at the beginning. After that, we meet our core group of Americans that will be voyaging off into the unknown world. There’s some creepiness going down by way of a cannibalistic primitive cult.
One of several hilarious things that will stand out to you watching this film and Eaten Alive is that both feature the same exact stock footage shots. You have not seen an Anaconda eat a monkey until you’ve seen the exact scene in two different B movies. There is another scene where a boat guide is devoured by a river crocodile. That also happens in both films. The setup is a bit different leading to up the death, but the end result is mostly the same. Although Mountain of the Cannibal God cuts the scene a little short.
The setup for Mountain of the Cannibal God is simple. A group goes on a search for a woman’s missing archaeologist husband in a jungle inhabited by a cannibalistic tribe. When they do find him, it is to our surprise these primitive people have been worshiping his body. They believe he is some sort of zombie because his still-running Geiger counter sounds like a heartbeat. There are some scenes of cannibalism that I am still unsure of whether they were real. For a 1978 film, the special effects team nails the realistic gore.
What happens when people go in search of the mysterious and terrible? That’s kind of the premise, but it doesn’t matter, because what we get is weird. The movie is weird. There’s some kind of cannibal witch doctor that spears a villager as she’s making love with a foreigner.
During the last leg of the movie, we get bizarre shots of a villagers privates as she stimulates herself. Then there’s a tribesman having intercourse with a hog. Bizarre. One thing kept crossing my mind watching this: is it legal? I think they rub this woman down with the oil secreted from her dead husband’s corpse. There’s a cannibal little person. Did I mention the drug-fueled orgy scene that makes The Matrix’s rave in Zion seem like a peck on the cheek? Christ, I swear a guy gets his package cut off and cauterized by a very hot club and I think it’s real. Am I watching some weird snuff film? I think a little person really died during the filming. His open bashed skull looks amazingly real. So either the FX team did a fantastic job or someone should be in prison.
Have you ever seen an aerial bear cage made of bamboo smash someone? I hadn’t until I’d seen Mountain of the Cannibal God.
Like most films seeking to exploit a demographic, Mountain of the Cannibal God spends a modicum of runtime showing us just how debased and savage these remote tribes are. PETA is nowhere to be found when the villagers ceremoniously sacrifice a living iguana to ward off evil. This is the sort of stuff you sure won’t see in film these days. For good reason, of course. I don’t recommend this film for everyone. But for the brave, this film is fascinating.
Now let’s talk about Eaten Alive, which has to be Mountain of the Cannibal God’s evil twin sister. It starts out in the big city where an assassin is tying up loose ends. He’s on a murder-cation because he’s hitting people all around town with a blowgun.
The main character, Diana in the movie is looking for her rich sister who disappeared following some Jim Jones-like freak. Diana is her name. Her family got rich off slave labor. Not sure why she feels the need to mention the Negroes tilling her family property. But we find out her missing sister’s deep in a remote jungle via a bizarre cult vacation video featuring a hedonistic cult.
I feel like this movie really wants to make a point. That dark skin people are dangerous and savage. The first brown person we meet is dart blowing assassin, and the second one is a pimp. From there on out, the rest are mysterious villagers or cannibals.
So Diana gets a group of misfits all there in the jungle. Each of them has their own motivations. They get captured and taken to see Jonas at his cult’s home, Purification Village. Jonas quickly divulges to the newcomers that the tribespeople he surrounds himself with have an idea of lunch which consists of fresh hot human entrails soaked in blood. More dangerous brown people. But the cult leader has them on a diet of snakes so there’s no need for anyone to worry. It’s evident that Jonas went the way of Colonel Kurtz. Funny how cult leaders tend to like their women topless. But seriously this B movie features a lot of shots that will have you covering your eyes, so watch at your own peril.
I swear that, just like Mountain of the Cannibal God, they may have actually killed people instead of using makeup. Watch with caution. There’s this random scene where a villager is stripped naked and raped by cannibals. Since they’re cannibals you can only imagine what they did to her after they killed her.
Follow me here. This shocking B movie showcases a weird ritual that makes whatever you saw in Midsommar look tame. For instance, a widow strips naked and is mounted by members of her deceased husband’s family in order to break the bonds of marriage. There’s so much obscenity. Imagine a Soul Train line and you’ll get what I am saying.
It’s as if the filmmakers were constantly trying to outdo the last shocking scene with another. Because right after the last scene, the newcomers drink some snake venom potion that puts them in a trance. At which point something I’d never imagine happening occurs. An insane Jonas takes a hand-carved ceremonial stone dildo and uses it to invade her body. But before that, he’s dipping the dildo ceremonial toy in snake blood.
There are scalpings, murders, and all sorts of things that could only happen when you involve cannibals and bad ideas. Watch these two movies at your own peril, preferably back to back.
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