It is a huge shame that there are complications with the theatrical release of “The Green Inferno” because this enormous, raging ball of fire should be seen for those avid horror fans who wish to see a hardcore, intense movie on the big screen. It made its Quebec premiere at Montreal’s Fantasia Film Festival and boy did it deliver.
A humanitarian group of college kids make a plane trip to the Amazon to chain themselves to trees and bulldozers, thus preventing a forest of being destroyed and saving its creatures and nearby tribes. Their plan succeeds… until their small plane on the way back from the construction site crashes dramatically deep into the Amazon jungle. The surviving passengers are ironically kidnapped by those they were attempting to protect and brought back to their peculiar leader. The plane accident then seems like a painless relief to those who didn’t make it compared to what awaits those who survived as the cannibals are hungry. Very hungry.
Many will make comparisons to the infamous “Cannibal Holocaust” from 1980, but there are some important differences. I loved “Cannibal Holocaust” for what it was: a provocative 80s horror movie that invoked controversy anywhere it went, whether it was from being banned in countless countries, from having its director regretting to have filmed the movie for having killed real animals, or even from having the director go to court with his actors to prove that they weren’t really dead. I’m not trying to compare the two movies. I think both are great. It just wouldn’t be fair if any cannibal-themed movie after “Holocaust” would be considered as a rip-off or copying this 1980s flick. Have every single “fount footage” flicks been bad-mouthed and hated after “The Blair Witch Project”? I think not.
“Inferno” allows us to discover our characters before they leave for the Amazon without going too much into useless details that may bore us. You learn to appreciate some and dislike others for different reasons. As per Eli Roth-style, there is obviously some dark humor intertwined with all of this crazy gore, especially with a scene involving marijuana.
The movie really takes off (ironically) when the plane crashes, as violence and incredible special effects will make you cringe and bring your hand to your mouth in horror. We’d expect big things form a movie having Greg Nicotero (special effects coordinator for “The Walking Dead” series) as its own special effects leader… and he does not disappoint. The visual effects are simply stunning and will have your eyes glued to the screen without ever having you doubt its authenticity.
The tribe in this film have never been filmed before, and in a video presented before the viewing of the film at Fantasia, the fantastic Eli Roth explained that the tribe members did not even know what a movie was. He had to show one to them. Guess which one he decided? That’s right: “Cannibal Holocaust”. He went so far as to say that they all laughed and thought it was a comedy. Creepy.
“The Green Inferno” is an absolute must for any horror fan who wishes to be shocked, in addition to have an interesting storyline and superb actors (Lorenza Izzo, Ariel Levy and Nicolás Martínez from “Aftershock”). I truly hope that this unbelievable film does get theatrical distribution so that it may be seen by many before it hits Blu-Ray and DVD. It deserves an excellent score of 4.5 stars out of 5. Enjoy!