Monday, February 13, 2006

Tough To Kill (1978) Joe D'Amato

I'm not wild about action films, but this is not really in action film. There is only one machine gun battle sequence. On the whole it's an adventure story in Africa filled with betrayal, racism, and cruelty - may the most hateful man win.

I grabbed this movie because it was in a clearance bin for $3 and it is a Joe D'Amato film. He is the director of Erotic Nights of the Living Dead and Emmanulle and the Last Canibals as it say on this DVD's cover, as well as Porno Holocaust, Antropophagus, Buio Omega, Black Cobra Woman, and a bunch of the Emmanuelle movies with Laura Gemser. He did not disappoint me with this trashy tale, which one imdb reviewer states "uses its badness to dig a filthy hole in the ground and wallow in it". There is literally some wallowing as one despicable soldier makes a young black civilian sit neck-deep in a concrete barrel of shit. He gestures that on three he will be running his sword across the top of the barrel and the young man is forced to submerge himself. The racist line that follows is equally vile and though it can be matched in offensiveness by many of the lines from the hardass Major who leads this group of mercenaries. I wondered for some moments whether these were anti-heroes and are we supposed to laugh along with their hateful lines, but then the movie throws a twist in there that changes everything and makes the viewer feel like a fool. I did not see the end coming, which is a testament to the point it proves. The last ten minutes of the movie are a joy to watch, but getting there is not consistently fun for the reason that this is a very uneven movie. The budget is very low, though it is shot in the Dominican Republic. There are very few effects, including gore effects, and most of the depravity is exhibited by the characters' actions and words.

The movie's most disgusting visual is the fat prisoner's eating of a cooked rabbit on a spit, where he stuffs nearly the entire carcass in his mouth in a display of greed - of course it is poisoned, he pays the price. I find it distasteful as I have a rabbit and would never let him be eaten, but you guys already know my stance on meat eating, if not, see
Farm Sanctuary.

Tough To Kill is recommended for a casual view. IMDB critics have said that the DVD version is poor quality, but I found it to be fine and it is WS.


Blogger John said...

That actually sounds like a pretty interesting view.I don't mind checking out a really good action movie.Although it would take something to get me to sit through a mainstream one.But I have seen dvd action on a couple of occasions.

8:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw Tough to Kill on dvd yesterday and it's actually one of the best indy movies that I've seen this year. I bought the dvd on Amazon and it was fine. It was widescreen too.There were no interviews with the cast or Joe D'Amato but for under ten bucks who cares.

2:16 PM  

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