Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Snuff (1976)


Written by Michael Findlay
Directed by Michael Findlay, Horacio Fredriksson, and Simon Nuchtern

The snuff film is a cinematic urban legend, a super-secret sub-sub-genre of Mondo Documentary in which a genuine murder is committed for the sole purpose of being captured on film and sold on the black market. The victim is almost always a woman, and often times there is a sick sexual undertone beneath the violence and bloodshed, catering to a very specific individual of twisted tastes and homicidal misogyny.

So when a film is called Snuff, you can reasonably expect it to be one of three things: a movie in which a snuff film is a plot element (8 MM); a film purporting to be a snuff film (August Underground); or a film about snuff films (Snuff: A Documentary About Killing on Camera).

This film, despite the title, has practically nothing to do with any of the above. It is a virtually plotless mess of an Argentinian import about a motorcycle-riding dark hippie cult leader whose buxom harem of willing sex slaves stab a number of people for close to 90 minutes. There's also a slutty movie star who sleeps with her director but keeps a spoiled rich boytoy on the side--I guess these are the people we're supposed to root for, but they're pretty slimy characters themselves, and the only thing we end up rooting for is the closing credits.

With terrible acting (at least on the part of the English-language dubbers), piss poor dialogue, and unconvincing action, there's very little to recommend here. Sure, there are sleazy elements that may be enjoyed by some, but in truth, they're never expounded upon enough to be shocking. The women are beautiful, but even the pervos among us will be sorely disappointed: there are sex scenes, but the camera spends the entire time zoomed in on the actresses' face like the excised footage of a Warholian stag film.

Only the tacked-on "twist" ending (from which the film shamelessly takes its name) may be of interest to gorehounds, and even that was pretty dumb, doing nothing but telling you that you just wasted the previous 80 minutes--as if you didn't already know.

Why is this such a disjointed mess? Probably because of its pathetic history: director Findlay had released a film entitled The Slaughter back in 1971. It received a limited release, tanked, then vanished all together. Producer Allan Shackleton later purchased the rights to The Slaughter, edited it down to incomprehensible form, and then hired Simon Nuchtern to direct the unrelated ending. Then the whole hot mess was released as Snuff and promoted as a real snuff film playing at your local bijou. Legend has it that there were Official Investigations into the authenticity of this film, but said Investigations need only to have consisted of watching the final 10 minutes to realize this was just poorly constructed hokum.

View the trailer below!

Rated R
80 Minutes

"Pig! Filthiest of all animals! I will cut your heart from your body and feed it to the dogs!"

HorrorBlips: vote it up!


  1. Wow, and that's what the ultra-anti-porn-feminists were up in arms about? I always thought it weakened their cause (seeing as it obviously isn't a snuff movie), but I didn't realise the film was such a tacky piece of crap. Sounds like a shambles.

  2. Thanks for wqatchinf it for us. What a shame though...

  3. Thanks for the review! As much as I love taking a trip down memory lane and watching some 1970s flicks, I will definitely stay away from this!

  4. Oh come on, when was the last time anyone saw or heard the word, "Unexpurgated" used in a film promo?

    That alone makes Snuff worth it! ;)

  5. Ive never been the least bit interested in seeing this one, neither of the Findlays are particularly talented in the non-porn arena


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