What has SIX arms, SIX legs, a writer/director with the last name SIX and crawls around in your mind long after you've witnessed it? Why, The Human Centipede, of course! People that know me personally are pretty annoyed at my level of enjoyment when it comes to this movie. It's really hard to explain how this movie is so great, but I will try to convince you, dear reader, that this is an instant classic. I will attempt to break down my reasons for liking it for you here in this post. This is also an attempt to kind of "get it out of my system", so to speak and lastly, to defend my opinion when people come back to me after watching it on my recommendation and are disappointed. I'm not saying we all have to like the same movies, but damn it, I want you to like this one!
First and foremost, you need to approach it with a different mindset in order to enjoy it. I mean, how else can someone "enjoy" a movie that is basically centered around the fusion of 3 people via their mouths and asses? If you don't see the humor in this scenario...you're in for a horrible ride and you will probably hate me (as some people do) for loving this film so much. Now if on the other hand, you like b-movies and unintentionally (or is it intentionally?) funny flicks, this movie is, well, the shit (a first of many bad puns for this post, I'm guessing).
The movie was written and directed by Tom Six and the story is pretty basic and to the point. There is not much back story or unnecessary character development. I mean c'mon, you're watching a movie about an ass to mouth surgical horror show, what do you need to know about these people, right? For those of you that have somehow avoided hearing/reading/seeing anything about this movie, I'll lay it out for you. On paper (or in this case, on your computer screen) the plot sounds deeply disturbing and downright fucking gross, but I urge you to read on after the description, after the initial feeling of a little vomit in the mouth, it's not so bad.
*SOME POSSIBLE SPOILERS BELOW, BUT YOU SHOULD KNOW THIS STUFF BY NOW*
The movie is about two young, infinitely stupid (hey, I didn't write the screenplay) but good looking American girls (Ashley C. Williams & Ashlynn Yennie) that are vacationing in Germany. Heading out for a night of partying in good ol' Deutschland, the girls get a flat tire on (you guessed it) a dark countryside road that is being pounded by rain. Oh yeah...and they're lost. After freaking out profusely and getting creeped out by some perverted old German dude (that I absolutely hope will be back for the sequel), the girls decide to get out of their car and into the rain, abandon the car and run INTO the woods for help. Obviously, very smart decisions. Things can only improve from here, right? In true predictable fashion, they end up at the home of Dr. Heiter, who happens to be "the leading surgeon in separating Siamese twins" (true story, that's what he says), an incredibly ridiculous villain played to perfection by Dieter Laser. A guy with a name like that definitely should be fucking shit up in a movie, and here he steals the show! The dude is so detached and so "mad-scienty" (yes, you read that right) that it's unreal. He's got it all! Creepy glare, German accent, weird paintings depicting conjoined twins, an underground lab, a labyrinthine house and of course, a white lab coat. Without much hesitation, Dr. Heiter drugs the girls and locks them up in his evil operating basement. Once a third victim (Akihiro Kitamura) is acquired, the "project" is explained to the "participants" via crude slides that looked like they were drawn up by a 7 year old. The idea is to attach the three victims in the way I described earlier; by surgically removing flesh and stitching up all kinds of areas that you don't want to think about. But what takes it a step further is the fact that they are not just merely "attached", they are CONNECTED. And what do I mean exactly? Use your imagination. Need help? The person in the middle has horrible meals and the person at the end of the centipede has really, really horrible meals. From this point is when the movie really kicks in and the "what the fucks?" start pouring out of first time viewers.
One of the crappy drawings Dr. Heiter uses to get his point across
This one really drives it home. Bummer.
Gross right? This is where a lot of people make their minds up about this movie. "Oh my God the movie is about what?!" Your mind goes in a bunch of weird places, you sicken yourself with the mere thought of the situation. What a horrible movie, right? Well if you ask me, yes and no. The IDEA is absolutely out there and very disgusting, but Tom Six capitalizes on this and pulls the oldest trick in the book. He doesn't exactly show you your biggest fear. Let's face it, "2 Girls, 1 Cup" already exists, his intention wasn't to show you people eating shit in a movie, nobody would see that (well, some people would, but not most). Is the movie Shocking? No, not at all. After you get your head wrapped around the idea of the movie (the hardest part for some people), the movie is actually pretty tame. Is it Gory? Not really. You see some minimal gore thrown in there but when compared to a lot of other gore movies out there, this is very, very soft. The thought of the Human Centipede is way scarier than the film. But the thought of the Human Centipede is so ridiculous that it's instantly laughable. Once you can laugh at it, the other little gems in the movie begin to reveal themselves. The comedy in some of the dialogue and the delivery is very over the top, the situations are so unreal that you can't help but laugh. The acting is not great but once the centipede is constructed, you do away with the mouths of 2 actors so you kind of get over it.
Watch this movie. Watch it with friends. Watch it with some alcohol. It's fun, trust me. I've seen it six times so far and every time has been with at least one new person in the group. For the second viewing, a friend could not believe we were watching it, she couldn't even look at the screen for the first half of the movie and almost got up and left the room. The thought was torturing her, she hadn't even seen any of the nasty bits and was insisting on leaving. But guess what? Curiosity (and a lot of convincing) eventually got to her and she watched it through and enjoyed it. Is it the greatest movie out there? Absolutely not. Is it shocking? Not really. Is it fun? Yes Indeed. Gorehounds might be disappointed and squeamish types might shy away from it, but one thing is certain; love it or hate it, you'll have something to talk about.
BONUS: Check out this game I ran across over at Newgrounds.com, pretty addicting!