As Bad As You Thought?: Human Centipede The First Sequence
Over the past couple of months that I have been writing these recaps/reviews, I have explored how some movies are bad in a cheesy and entertaining way, and then there are movies that are bad in a way that makes them a chore to go through, and sometimes, rarely you find a movie that is neither but a movie that leaves you scratching your head at the end wondering just what the hell the madcap insanity you just witnessed was. The movie this week is one of the latter, a film that has become a modern day cult classic due to it’s bizarre nature and pure disgustingness (yes that is a word now), The Human Centipede. The plot is straight forward and has now become infamous, a mad scientist decides to sew a bunch of people’s mouths to other people’s butts. Despite all of the negative reactions from people this movie gets it does have a nice sized cult following and now it is time to dive in to see if I can see what they like about it.
In the wilds of Europe a mysterious and ominous man sits in his car by an abandoned road looking menacing and stuff and glares at pictures of animals connected to each other a the ass, which should make you wonder if that’s what everyone who you see pulled over to the side of the road is doing. Upon seeing the perfect potential victim run out into the woods right in front of him to use the toilet which is apparently disguised as a bunch of bushes.
Flash forward to two American girls travelling through Europe looking for a sketchy night club, whenever this happens in a movie you always get a good feeling for the poor travelers. Naturally they get lost driving down the roads at night in a foreign land and they end up stranded in the woods in the dead of night, seeking refuge. Suddenly like a beacon in the night a set of headlights appear and approaches them; but instead of helping or doing anything relevant the guy driving the nice new Mercedes is a perv who harasses them for a bit, and even after they make it clear they want nothing to do with him he lingers around for a while, I do have to give the generic creeper points for determination. The pair of American women set out to search out refuge and to give me a break from their constant whining and bitching. An you might be surprised by this dear readers but they find the house of the creepy guy from the beginning of the flick. I know, I’m as surprised as you are.
The creepy guy offers them a cold and uncomfortable welcome into his sterile and poorly decorated house. In order to earn their trust to trick them into his little experiment, the mad scientist asks them a series of questions and stares them down, but instead of running away from the scary guy they accept drinks from him. For American party girls they sure don’t seem to know anything about not taking drinks from creepy mad scientists who are open about their disdain for humans. You can guess what happens next to our intrepid travelling Americans.
The next morning they wake up strapped to hospital beds in the scientists basement laboratory, while the scary scientist named, Dr. Heiter watches on in boredom. Heiter uses his keen tastes in visuals to decide that the guy he got at the beginning of the film would not match the two girls and kills them, you know he’s right, the guy would have thrown the whole color scheme off, Dr. Heiter may be crazy but at least he has good decorative ideas. Later that day he returns from his trip to K-Mart with a brand new Japanese man who will take the place as the leader of the centipede. Once he has all three of them, Dr. Heiter decides to surprise the trio by telling them they are going to become a lot closer together and if they don’t like it they can kiss each other’s ass. I can’t help but realize just how much effort Dr. Heiter spent in creating the slideshow to educate his victims on the nature of his experiment, I’m beginning to wish more movie villains had the attention to detail and competency that this guy has.
As he begins the operation one of the American girls attempts to escape and it becomes clear just how unsecured their restraints are, geez these people really have no excuse for not escaping before now. She runs away through the house, and instead of actually leaving just locks herself in the guest bedroom; I guess she thinks she’s too good to sleep on the stretcher like her counterpoints. The room has a gigantic window but instead of using one of the many pieces of furniture around her to break the glass and escape she just cowers behind the bed until he realizes that there is a large window he can break and get to her, and he does just that. He chases her around some more until he catches her in the swimming pool, but thankfully he rewards her moxy by telling her she will be the PB & J in his sandwich of people. But because she is stupid generic horror movie victim, once she is home free to escape from this art-deco house of evil, she heads back down into the lab to help her friend escape. I guess she does not realize she might actually help more if she runs off to find help or just stays inside the house, because she seems like she’s in no hurry to leave, and just call the cops on the phone. Anyways she is slowed down immensely due to dragging her unconscious friend and is recaptured.
Finally, it’s the day we’ve all been waiting for, Dr. Heiter finally puts on his game face and make a Human Centipede, just what he has always wanted. This scene for all it’s ridiculousness is shot with as much drama and intensity as can be mustered making it really strange and surreal. Finally it is complete and Dr. Heiter can rejoice that all the medical training he has received paid off and he has the weirdest pet anyone has even put on a leash and taken to Petsmart, you know I just got an idea for April Fools Day but more on that later. Heiter is obviously happier than a fat kid at Golden Corral and celebrates by locking his new toy in a cage. The Japanese guy who is the lead is forced into the position of the Centipede’s mouth piece and takes advantage of this yelling insults at the guy and disobeying him whenever he gets the chance and just overall being a macho alpha male, if I made a Human Centipede I’d get a more obedient leader but I’m no mad scientist so what do I know.
But a good pet owner never gives up and realizes training is a never ending battle. So on Day 2 of Operation Centipede it’s right back to the training regimen, and that’s when the inevitable happens and the Centipede is fed if you catch what I mean. After a while, the Human Centipede becomes the companion he always wanted it to be, this movie is turning out to be a heartwarming tale after all, as well as stomach sickening one. Like any good physician, Dr. Heiter performs a follow up exam to find out the girl at the end of the Love Train is dying and needs to be replaced, but before he can take the proper medical steps, the Mystery Machine pulls up ready to investigate the Mystery of the Centipede Doctor, except Shaggy and Scooby are now overweight and middle aged detectives.
He pulls his whole creepy giving them water routine, using the logic that nobody is going to look for two police men who mysteriously disappeared. Nautrally the police become suspicious when Heiter keep running down into his basement to deal with the screaming Japanese man with two American women sewed to his butt and leave to go get a warrant. As Dr. Heiter runs down to the basement to hid ehis science experiment from the oncoming police, the Japanese guy once again takes charge by incapacitating the good doctor and leading the Human Orient Express on a daring escape. They make it all the way to the guest room from before and start breaking the window until a injured to the point of not functioning Dr. Heiter comes crawling very slowly up. Instead of facing down in a evenly matched and surely unintentionally hilarious fight to the death, the Japanese man just kills himself….huge letdown. Oh wait NOW the police show up looking for Dr. Crazy Man, but the police so blatantly ignore police procedure that even I can tell that they are doomed, and are unceremoniously killed but they take the mad scientist with them. So with the Japanese leader now dead and the back of the Gravy Train following shortly thereafter, both cops and the mad scientist all going to join the choir invisible, we are left with one lone survivor and then….the movie ends.
Was The Human Centipede as bad as I thought? I did not really have the highest of expectations for this flick going in, so I guess it was better than I was expecting, but not too much better. The entire time I watched this movie, I was wondering who came up with the idea of a mad scientist sewing people’s butts to each others mouths and thought to themselves, “hey, this sounds like an idea for a hit movie!” but not just that, but upon discovering that, against all odds the movie created a solid fanbase went, “Alright sequel time,” that’s right, there is an even more disgusting sequel out there. There is really nothing to be gained from seeing this movie it’s simply a disgusting a strange movie.