Director: Steven R Monroe.
Starring. Sarah Butler, Jeff Branson, Rodney Eastman. USA. 1h 48m.
It’s not often I waltz into a remake but I thought I had better make an tiny effort for this one.. the film manages to stay true to the original but in all the wrong ways, heavily inspired by the cult classic banned movie from 1978 This remake of I spit on your grave managed to recreate a harrowing rape and revenge experience. Highlight rape culture and male dominance in society the film is a stark warning to the extent of the darker recesses of human culture.
A young writer wants to get off the grid to finish her book, she rents a cabin secluded in deep in the (back)woods, after encountering some young male locals at the gas station she avoids their advances in an embarrassing confrontation and leaves them looking shabby. Later on the next evening everything starts going wrong, with mud pissing out the faucet and a blocked toilet she calls for a handyman then drops her mobile down the bog, a simpleton pops over, fixes her toilet and secretly scopes the place out, he scampers off and hooks up with his “friends” the assholes from the gas station. Then invited themselves over and carry out one of the longest gang rape scenes allowed in the cinema, part way through the fragile girl escapes into the arms of the police but her nightmare doesn’t end…
It’s heavily inspired by the original, in fact it’s almost blinded by it and doesn’t do much to deviate but there are bold attempts to make everything more shocking but alas it was never banned and is strangely easy accessible torture horror, it’s not as outlandish or violent as A Serbian Film and refuses to really engage in the violence, so in relation to its predecessor it failed to be a modern dvd nasty, but it’s not easy to swallow..
Despite this being revenge horror, it has a rusty moral background, mostly surrounding bullying, be it gender bullying or a few guys picking on the “retard” or bent cops taking advantage of everyone, there’s a lot of shit rolling downhill but when it finally hits the fan, there is no hell like a woman repeatedly raped and beaten and left for dead.. this underdog managed to evade a few plot holes and eventually comes back to seek her bloody revenge but it all happens in the last few minutes of the movie, it’s a very long and drawn out adventure, getting to the cabin and being abused takes up most of the film, all the parts that the horror fans wanted to see are just about squeezed in at the end, as if they couldn’t make a graphic rape scene they just made a really long one but not as intense as Irreversible (2002)
Music and atmosphere don’t really play a part, the film gets darker as the tones change but there’s nothing really memorable about the background going on with this film, which is unusually as this is where the creep value could have been amplified. It’s interesting to see how things haven’t changed socially or have they, it would be great to see these guys descend on a girl who fought back first, imagine Juno from the Decent getting trapped by some rednecks in a cabin, there would be a massacre. It’s odd that the movies didn’t modernise itself in this way, giving a different perspective, showing a much stronger woman who doesn’t have to be a victim to fight back. I guess in an alternative reality the film is a bunch of women raping a young man…
As Jennifer’s character develops into a psychopathic killer, the guys all but assume that she’s been eaten by gators, and get on with their dull country lives. We’re not privy to her tactical training or where she’s been hiding out for a month or how she got so much intel on the guys (another plot hole?) but a bit of explaining could have really helped build her character like Frigga (Christina Lindberg) from They Call Her One Eye (1973)
Overall it works, even if it’s back end heavy, I think it could have really pushed some moral and stomach boundaries by being crazy outlandish, there are some harder scenes in any New French Extreme film but it gets the job done, it’s an interesting take on a “retro classic” and has spawned some; ok sequels.
R – I spit on your grave (1978), I spit on your grave 2 (), They call her one eye (1973), Haute Tension (),
L – Women on a Warpath, A-Z of cult remakes, Sole survivor, Rape and Revenge, Exploitation Films
A – Remaking Greatness, is any movie safe?
Vs – I spit on your grave vs I spit on your grave