'The Human Centipede 2 (Full Sequence)' Film Review

The Human Centipede 2 Review by Colleen Wanglund, MoreHorror.com

When Dutch director Tom Six released THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE (FIRST SEQUENCE) in 2009 reactions were all over the map. Some said it was vile and that Six had to be some sort of sociopath. Others said it was boring and Six was lazy. Tom Six has answered his critics with THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE 2 (FULL SEQUENCE).

Of course after hearing the film was banned in Great Britain I had to see it, although that ban has since been lifted with the removal of 2 minutes 37 seconds from the original cut. That is supposedly the film I saw Friday night at the IFC Center during a sold-out midnight screening.

Martin (Laurence Harvey) is a creepy-looking parking garage security guard with an obsession with The Human Centipede and the fictional Dr. Heiter (Dieter Laser). Martin dreams of creating a twelve person human centipede, but Martin is also screwed up in the head. He is a loner and a mute who was abused both sexually and mentally by his parents. After repeated viewings of the original movie, Martin decides it’s time to make his dream a reality. He begins attacking patrons of the parking garage, shooting them to disable them and then knocking them senseless with a vicious-looking crowbar.

Martin gathers his victims in a filthy warehouse to carry out his plans. He even manages to get the actress from the first film, Ashlynn Yennie (the girl in the middle) to be a part of his weird experiment using the ruse of an audition with Quentin Tarantino. We also hear voicemails sent to Martin’s phone from agents representing Tom Six, and actors Akihiro Kitamura and Ashley Williams from THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE (a set-up for the third film, perhaps?) Martin finally flips out completely after his own mother attempts to kill him. He kills his mother and packs up a suitcase full of tools to begin assembly of his centipede. Things don’t go as smoothly as Martin envisioned and now he needs to improvise.

Seeing Human Centipede 2 was definitely an experience. There was a sign at the box office warning people away who may be easily offended or sickened. After getting into the theater the audience received barf bags and staple removers.

Where THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE (Review) had little in the way of gore and was antiseptic, for the most part, and methodical, THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE 2 was the exact opposite. Filmed in black and white the film is dark, gritty and filthy. Where Dr. Heiter was obviously a skilled surgeon who knew what he was doing, Martin is a delusional and sloppy amateur. The story is thin and there are plenty of plot holes but the movie works. In other words, it does what it’s supposed to do. I had my own moments of discomfort with what was on the screen (including a quick but disturbing sequence involving a pregnant woman) but I think the most disturbing thing was how hard I laughed when Martin pulled out the staple gun. One of my favorite scenes was after Martin killed his mother…..what they do to her body with special effects is just beautiful. Overall the black and white just adds to the gore by allowing the viewer to use their imagination. We see what we know is blood, but it looks worse and more plentiful in our heads.

I enjoyed that a lot of the violence is implied as opposed to showing it all in graphic glory. We see how Martin attacks his victims, but not always. The movie’s atmosphere relies on sound as much as visuals. Besides the constant moaning from his victims, there are also the echoes in the parking garage signaling those victims are quite alone and no one will come to their aid. We also hear the sound of the crowbar as it makes contact with flesh and bone without necessarily seeing it. Martin doesn’t say a word but his facial expressions show us his frustration, anger and glee. I would love to know where Tom Six found Laurence Harvey. This is apparently his first film and he does an amazing job at being a creepy, imbalanced psychopath. There is a scene in the film involving sandpaper that needs no more than what is implied by the look on his face to draw plenty of groans and squirming from the audience.

I liked The Human Centipede but I enjoyed The Human Centipede 2 even more. While I had read previews saying how disturbing the film is I was expecting more….but was still happy with what I saw. The marketing for this film was genius between the original ban in the UK and stories from film festivals describing how audience members got so sick they had to be helped by paramedics. While visceral, weird and disturbing, it’s not the worst I’ve seen. I highly recommend this to horror fans…..you won’t be sorry.

Comments

Submitted by L.L. Soares (not verified) on Sun, 10/09/2011 - 01:33

L.L. Soares's picture

TERRIFIC review, Colleen. Makes me regret all the more that I didn't make more of an effort to go see it with you guys. It wasn't playing here, and I feel like I've missed a major event!

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