This is topic Who has seen Last House on the Left? in forum « 70's Movies at iRewind Talk.

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Posted by Nick N (Member # 2158) on :
i watched that movie last night, and it was so disturbing. i'm not so sure that I can watch it again actually, and the remake is supposed to be the most brutal movie ever made...has anyone else seen "Last House on the Left"?
Posted by mamamiasweetpeaches (Member # 1715) on :
I saw it a few years back...and by a few I mean more than ten. I dont remember it being as gruesome as it's fabled to be...but then again I didnt see it in the 70s when it first came out.
Thats supposed to be based on a true story, right?
Posted by ISIS (Member # 1780) on :
Hi Nick!!! Glad to see you again.

I have it...but I only could ever watch it once wasn't like was just what Nick said ...disturbing.

It was strange...with the background was very 70's...and sounded almost cartoonish...and that made it kind of less creepy...but there was no avoiding the creepiness when it got to the end, and what they did to those 2 girls...and then what her parents do to those guys was even more bizarre...the way they did it.

It was definately not one I would watch again either.

The movie "Don't go in the House"- is the exact same way for me too.

I still have yet to see the original Texas Chain Saw Massacre...I almost rented it a few weeks ago...but it was out. maybe that was a good thing...I don't know if it will be up my alley or not...scary movies have changed for watch them now...if I have seen them before then I am ok...but if I haven't...they really creep me out worse than they use to.
Posted by Nick N (Member # 2158) on :
Hey Isis! The original Texas Chainsaw Massacre really is nothing compared to Last House. Texas also kind of looks like a documentary which makes it more disturbing. the first time I saw it I was disturbed, but in a totally different way; I was like "that was just too strange--I loved it!" I bought the DVD and have seen it many times. Also, I hear that Last House is being remade into a movie called Chaos, which is supposedly the most brutal and graphic movie ever made. On the website it said that the crew even got bothered while they were filming it. the official site has a picture that suggests that the one girl will get her off. and i've heard of other parts of the movie, and I kind of want to see it, but I'm way too afraid. thinking about it and the Last House makes me queasy...uggh.
Posted by JimBrayFan (Member # 3831) on :
One of Wes Craven's best!

Love this film. Love it when the mom bites the.. oh you'll just have to watch.
Posted by ISIS (Member # 1780) on :
I remember the movie "I spit on your Grave" was disturbing like this...and I still think the movie "The Entity" with Barbara Hershey was really scary. The scene in the bathroom was so brutal...and some of the special effects were so real...I still am clueless how they did some of that stuff.

I think alot of times...things are scarier.. the less you see.

I have no desire to see a movie today that they say is the most brutal movie ever made.

Another good 70's scary movie is "Death Weekend" with Brenda Vaccarro.
Posted by mamamiasweetpeaches (Member # 1715) on :
Everyone seems to remember I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE (especially the bathtub scene and the immortal words "It feels so good it hurts!"
But when you really watch that movie it's put together pretty poorly. But people always remember it cuz the deaths were so strange (and gross)

I still have't seen DEATH WEEKEND. will have to get that one.
Posted by cindymancini (Member # 679) on :
I watched this for the first time on Sunday...I wasn't right afterward...

So disturbing...don't think I could revisit it again.

I saw in another old post that Isis mentioned how odd the music was & I agree...there were scenes where the music was so upbeat & felt wrong...

But if you're looking for some real authentic grainy & psychologically disturbing 70's horror, Last House on the Left is the ticket.
Posted by The Good Package (Member # 9492) on :
i have only seen the remake. is it more disturbing or less disturbing than the texas chainsaw massacre?
Posted by aTomiK (Member # 6575) on :
Watched Last House on the Left first time about three years ago and yes, it is disturbing stuff.
But at the same time it´s very good if you happen like 70s style "real" horror.

I also liked the remake but the original is better.

Posted by Crash (Member # 7484) on :
I've seen the original Last House three times since its original release--which means I check in with it about once a decade--and even that is probably too often.

As I've told people over the years (I took some films studies classes in college, and we had to review/analyze lots of films. While my classmates were writing about Gone with the Wind and the like, I did, among others, Last House. That should tell you a lot about me. [Smile] ), Last House is one of those films that people will be talking about for as long as people talk about films. First, it causes us to ponder how we even analyze film as an art form. It is so easy to call Last House vile, disturbing garbage--and many folks do. But what were Sean Cunningham and Wes Craven attempting? There is a fantastic book on the making of Last House--probably the best "making of" book I've ever seen--where they discuss how they wanted basically to provoke people and get a reaction. On those terms, the film truly succeeds because it does just that and more. It's not like the disposable horror films of today such as the Saw series which are just fanboy gore effects shows. Last House stands outside mainstream modern horror films.

Second, I think that Last House has quite a lot going for it beyond being a shocking, distrubing horror film. It is a film with a lot of intelligence, made by intelligent people. (Craven taught English literature, I believe.) The atrocities perpertrated by the psychos are so horrendous and disturbing that when the revenge plot kicks in, even the most passive, violence-abhoring viewer will face a moral dilemma: Will I suspend my own personal ideology to enjoy seeing the villains suffer and die in the most horrible ways? (I think that I know the answer to that for most of us.) The film's power comes from its ability to not only disturb, but to provoke a real, honest contemplation of one's beliefs. How many recent horror films can you name that do that?

Last House is too much, quite simply because it has to be too much to accomplish what it sets out to achieve. While not perfect by any means (Even Craven and his colleagues thought that they were going too far so they added all the silly "happy" music and stupid comedy with the dumb cops to give audiences a breather. That doesn't work at all for me), Last House is a powerful, important horror film, one for all time.

[ 02. October 2012, 13:44: Message edited by: Crash ]
Posted by cindymancini (Member # 679) on :
Originally posted by Crash:
The atrocities perpertrated by the psychos is so horrendous and disturbing that when the revenge plot kicks in, even the most passive, violence-abhoring viewer will face a moral dilemma: Will I suspend my own personal ideology to enjoy seeing the villains suffer and die in the most horrible ways? (I think that I know the answer to that for most of us.)

EXACTLY Crash!!! I almost lunged out of my chair & actually yelled at the tv, "Get those -------!!" It was totally involuntary! After all the torture you watch & endure at the hands of the psychos, you just can't help feel relieved & almost exhilirated when the tables start to turn!!!

So Sean Cunningham...isn't he behind the first Friday the 13th? I didn't know about this collabo. Interesting...I don't think I like Wes Craven.
Posted by Crash (Member # 7484) on :
And query: Since you reacted that way, are the needs for violence and revenge sometimes justifiable, and perhaps even necessary, as basic human traits? Or are those feelings that are housed in the lower, more primitive part of the brain, always wrong, forcing most of us to live our lives trying to contain them? Or maybe two wrongs--violence to counter violence--do occassionally make a "right" in the universe? [Smile] (By the way, "I Spit on Your Grave" essentially revisits the same pyschological territory in a much cruder way. It, too, for years was dismissed as even more vulgar, obscene garbage. As time has passed, however, people have started to look at it in a much different light--as a revenge piece plus "man's inhumanity to woman"/female empowerment tract. For me, the verdict is still out on that one. It's poorly made and incredibly primitive as a film, yet like Last House, it is truly disturbing and poses interesting questions.)

As I recall, Cunningham and Craven had done a porn film together before "Last House." Wes Craven, one of the great modern horror film directors who rose to prominence in the 1970s, is the real deal. While his output has been spotty over the years, mostly of late, he's done some really memorable stuff: Last House, The Hills Have Eyes, A Nightmare on Elm Street, The Serpent and the Rainbow, Scream, and Red Eye being his best work.
Posted by The Good Package (Member # 9492) on :
i would think there would have to be a film out there thats the measuring stick for the gruesome and disturbing.
Posted by Crash (Member # 7484) on :
A bunch of years ago now, there was an excellent essay called "Disturbo 13, the 13 Most Disturbing Films of All Time," by, I think, horror critic Chas Balun in a scholarly book on horror films. Of course, Last House made the list, along with some other sick stuff like Men Behind the Sun, In a Glass Cage, Bloodsucking Freaks, etc. My personal measuring stick as the most disturbing film that I've ever seen is the recent "A Serbian Film," which has been banned--and in fact, you'll be prosecuted if you screen it--in many places, but is available as a nearly uncut (I think that it is only missing a few seconds of footage) DVD in the U.S. That one--and I'm not really exaggerating--made me contemplate suicide several times while viewing it. But like Last House, I couldn't just write it off as trash. It, too, is a serious film making a valid point about how Slobodan Milosovic abused his people. It uses the plot of having a Serbian porn star, making one last porn film for money to help his family, being forced by this shady "director" to participate in unspeakable acts as the vehicle for this social commentary. Unlike Last House, which is so cheaply made that it is just raw, A Serbian Film is extremely well made--and very, very psychologically troubling. I absolutely can't recommend it to anyone but the most psychologically fit individual because it's one of those rare films that I think could cause damage.
Posted by Johnny Roarke is reckless (Member # 9826) on :
A Serbian Film was released here in Holland on dvd and blu-ray in its full uncut version..

yeah, we're a bunch of sick people here.. i know. [Big Grin]

I'm not familiar with that essay you mentioned, but i certainly do know Chas. Balun !
Among the many things he did was also the excellent book Beyond Horror Holocaust and liner notes
for several horror dvd releases (including The Beyond and Cannibal Holocaust).
He definitely had his own in-your-face way of talking about these movies. He was one of a kind,
that's for sure !

Unfortunately Chas. passed away nearly three years ago.
Posted by aTomiK (Member # 6575) on :
My brother also bought the classic Chas Balun books
Horror Holocaust (1986) and The Gore Score (1987) back in the day.
Oh, the memories [Cool]
Posted by Crash (Member # 7484) on :
I'll admit it about being "sick," at least in the minds of people who don't share my abiding interest in different or extreme cinema. [Smile]

Glad that you are a fan of Balun. Me too. I debated mightily when the special edition of Cannibal Holocaust came out whether I should pick it up. I ultimately decided against it since I had a Dutch VHS copy, which was uncut. It's not a film that I really desire to revisit much, though on quite a few levels, it's an amazingly brilliant film, another one which you just can't say is simply disgusting trash. I love horror films that scare or entertain, but I really appreciate horror films that make you think, though films like Last House also make you carefully consider your choice of words to describe them. I can't really say that I "liked" or "enjoyed" Last House because those words don't capture it. I think I'll settle on "I understand the film and respect the intentions of the filmmakers. It's a historically significant horror film." [Smile]

I would have liked to have heard Balun on an audio commentary for Holocaust. He'd have been great.
Posted by The Good Package (Member # 9492) on :
dont think i'll watch that serbian film, the horror films gotta have some element of fun in them for me.

but that does sound awfully disturbing
Posted by Crash (Member # 7484) on :
Looking back at this old thread, while I still think that A Serbian Film is incredibly disturbing, my vote for the sickest, most worthless film that I've ever had the displeasure of viewing is the Japanese film Grotesque (2009). The director was practically jumping for joy when it got banned in the UK and several other countries because he set out to make the most extreme film possible, and the bannings were great for publicity. Grotesque is just a wall-to-wall exceedingly sadistic torture porn film with the most minimal plot--and the most disgusting images imaginable. It's very, very bad, even outdoing the notorious Japanese Guinea Pig series. You might recall that Charlie Sheen saw one of those films at a Hollywood party and called the FBI because he thought that he'd seen a real snuff film. Grotesque just rubs the viewer's nose in filthy and wallows in hideousness. I can't even describe the atrocities on this family friendly site, except to say that there's a scene with a hook and intestines that will just make you want to throw up and throw your TV out the window. I suppose if you measure success--making the most disgusting film ever--this thing succeeds in spades. For me, this has no redeeming value whatsoever. A Serbian Film, at least, was a political allegory.

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