James loses his daughter in a car accident, and his wife becomes severely injured. Prior to the accident, their relationship had been quite rocky. Now that he has to take care of her, and even literally clean up her shit, their relationship has reached an extreme low. One night when trying to relieve himself, James goes home with another woman, but before the night's over he hallucinates that she's his wife, leading him to kill her.
Chad Ferrin's directorial debut landed at Troma, and it couldn't have found a more appropriate home than that. Although it is missing some of the Kaufman comedy, the rest of it is fairly spot on. "Unspeakable" depends a lot on its title - to be repulsive and showing unspeakable acts. That's the key here, and that's what you need to consider when you watch this little millennium exploitation flick. If you ignore this and what it's trying to do, you'll just have a bad taste in your mouth and no idea why that guy keeps wanting to rape a woman who shits herself over and over again. Unspeakable.
"Unspeakable" isn't without a plot, though. And as a start-up, it's rather solid. It starts right before a car accident with our lead man, James, and his wife and daughter. The daughter dies (an overly dramatic and silly scream from James with his daughter in his arms follows) while his wife survives, but is handicapped. The relationship between the two wasn't that great to begin with, but now James blames his wife for the death of their daughter. But his wife can no longer walk or talk. All she really does is shake her head and shit herself. James is left to take care of her, although she also has a caretaker, which she'd be better off without since he rapes her whenever he's alone with her. Meanwhile this crippled woman is raped, her impotent husband is out feeding birds in the park. James is slowly boiling over with hate and anxiety, which ends in a killing spree involving several innocent women.
It took 12 years for this film to land itself a distributor in the UK, and I suppose there's no surprise there. For a country that is known for wanting the worst things out of their movies, they couldn't possibly release a film like this, even though the Video nasty era is over. What we have here is just several inappropriate things lined up for your viewing pleasure, from performing cunnilingus on a woman covered in shit, to incest and to blasphemy. It hits a lot of nails on the head. Even though it's done quite silly and most of you will just get a laugh out of the stupidity, it's impossible to deny that it's there.
You have to take this movie for what it is, and at times that's hard because it still tries to convey a plot that sadly doesn't come through in the end. And I stand by the statement that it starts out pretty good. But by the end of it, it actually gets boring since it never goes further. Once you've reached the point in time where James starts killing, that's where you'll stay. A few realizations from our character won't save it from itself. And in the end you have to decide if you want to watch a movie that just exploits by pushing gross things into it (and a few more-or-less-bloody murder scenes) or one that exploits by way of a solid, provoking story. "Unspeakable" doesn't do the latter.
For a debut feature I think this is good. It shows a lot of promise that I think Chad Ferrin has lived up to, if I should believe reviews of his more recent films like "Easter Bunny, Kill! Kill!". Obviously he doesn't come off as a director that will make the most philosophical dramas or anything, but "Unspeakable" shows he could pull off horror, exploitation and similar styles well. I don't really have a reason for skipping his newer flicks other than the fact that Preston has reviewed them already so I put my focus elsewhere. And "Unspeakable" won't really push me into watching them either, at least not for now. But I don't doubt that they're alright, going by what I saw here!
The movie wins points by being fairly ambitious. It's relatively well shot, has some varying effects but that mostly look good, actors that seem to handle their characters rather well (even if outrageous at times), and no matter how bad the plot might be at times at least it works within the frames of the film. Take "Unspeakable" lightly and you can find yourself entertained by this independent debut feature. A variety of gross (and silly) things is all you'll really get here. You can find much better exploitation from previous eras, but if you're interested in seeing a twisted little Troma-esque feature then you should pick up the Cine du Monde release and invite some appropriate friends.
Images used by kind permission of: Cine du Monde (UK) 2011
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