MORITURIS **** Italy 2011 Dir: Raffaele Picchio. 83 mins
The directorial debut for Raffaele Picchio is a movie that, had it been released on video at a certain point in the 1980’s, would have a) been on the video nasties list on these shores and b) led to at least one sequel.
In any case, you have to warm to a movie with a dedication that reads “In Memory of Humanity”. Two pretty Romanian girls in Italy meet three initially decent guys in a club who turn out to be sadistic rapists. They are subjected to considerable torment and humiliation until MORITURIS takes a FROM DUSK TILL DAWN-style gear-shift and transitions from gruelling 70’s ordeal horror into rousing 80’s splatter mode. Picchio is eager to shock and fearless in the LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT-inspired scenes of anal rape and scissor violations – crossing the line still further with a sequence involving a naked woman and an unwanted furry vaginal visitor. When we find out the nature of the “Other” threat that lurks in the atmospherically lit backwoods location, the movie offers a fabulously spirited revival of old-school Italian gore-fests, complete with copious cranial trauma and crucifixions courtesy of Sergio Stivaletti.. Refusing to opt for the faddish route of knowing fanboy gags, it’s played for intensity and the gladiatorial monsters are a novel, potent threat.
Review by Steven West