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Banned in America (1998)

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Posted 8th July 2009 at 10:56 AM by Pete
Updated 25th March 2010 at 11:45 PM by Pete

The success of Gualtiero Jaccoppeti's, Franco Prosperi's and Paolo Cavara's Mondo Cane (aka 'A Dogs Life' 1962) inspired a whole host of imitations from around the world. In Italy Jacopetti and Prosperi's former collaborators Antonio Climati and Mario Morra directed the notorious Savage Man, Savage Beast (1975) and Savannah Violenta ( 1982 ). Exploitation legend Antonio Margheriti directed Il Pelo nel Mondo (aka Wicked World, Mondo Inferno, 1964), Alfredo Castiglioni directed Addio Ultimo Uomo (1978, described in one review as a circumcisionathon) and Shocking Africa (1982). Jaccopetti and Prosperi themselves directed Mondo Cane 2 (1963), Women of the World ( 1963 ), the infamous Africa Addio (1966) and the incredibly un P.C Addio Zio Tom (1971, AKA: Goodbye Uncle Tom ). From Japan came Akira Ide's Nuova Guinea: L' Isola Di Cannibali (New Guinea: Island of Cannibals, 1974) footage from wich found its way into Bruno Mattei's bonkers Zombie Creeping Flesh, 1981 ). The UK responded with London in the Raw (Arnold Lewis Miller, Norman Cohen, 1964), Primitve London ( Arnold Lewis Miller, 1965 ) and USA gave the world the Faces of Death series and the film under review here; Banned in America amongst many others. There have also been scathing attacks on the Mondo genre with Poalo Cavaras The Wild Eye ( 1969 ) and Ruggero Deodatos superb Cannibal Holocaust ( 1980 )

The main purpose of 'Mondo' movies is to show humanity in all its (often brutal) forms. War footage, gang violence, native rituals, cannibalism, animal slaughter often with a sensationalistic narration is deemed essential ingredients. Most 'mondo' moives are cheap and exploitative, just an excuse to show violence. Other's (like Africa Addio ) are compelling, disgusting, upsetting but undeniably fascintaing. Banned in America falls under the former catergory; a cheap attempt to show people blowing their heads off.

Banned in America opens with a warning: What you are about to witness will disturb you. Even shock you. There is a dark side of humanity the censors wont let you see... but we will!

And with that we see an aids victim on a freeway making a portest. After failing to burn himself alive he takes a shotgun and blows his head off, which is then repeated for our viewing pleasure (!). Next we cut to a hostage situation in Venezuela that ends with the criminal getting shot in the face. The horrors of drink driving come next followed by Iraqi soldiers executing Kurdish Rebels much to the delight of the watching crowd. Other footage includes criminals getting their hands and feet cut off, people jumping from burning buildings and splattering on the floor ( narrator:' thats got to hurt!') a man being hung ( narr: This man had no choice but to hang around! ), decapitated drug runners, a man with swealed up testicles that are so big i actually thought he was sitting on a bean bag!( narr: 'That must drive him nuts!' ), a child abuser getting hit on the head by the victims father and, of course, the mandatory mondo animal abuse: Seal clubbing, decapitated chickens, dog fight and abbatior footage. Fans of Faces of Death will find the animal footage awfully familiar...

The horrors of the internet come next with pictures of the mutilated corpses of Kurt Kobain, Princess Diana and the OJ Simpson Murders. The narrator closes with the line ' You have a right to see what goes on. Freedom is worth fighting for.'

Not if it means we get more movies like this!

People might say Banned in America is trying to make a serious point but for me thatís bollocks!. By showing most of the footage in slow motion replays its obvious that its just aiming for cheap shocks. The constant thrash metal soundtrack confirms this. At only 45 minutes you could do something better with your time, like watching porn.

Banned in America 2 followed shortly after;a review will be up for that one soon.
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  1. Old Comment
    iluvdvds@Cult Labs's Avatar
    Great blog Loops (luving the colours!). This film sounds VERY extreme - one I probably won't see. Is it all real then or almost all fake like FOD?
    Comment with Quote permalink
    Posted 8th July 2009 at 12:09 PM by iluvdvds@Cult Labs iluvdvds@Cult Labs is offline
  2. Old Comment
    Pete's Avatar

    Its all real!

    Thing is it starts off shocking but then after a while the shock wears off and you end up being bored.
    Comment with Quote permalink
    Posted 8th July 2009 at 12:39 PM by Pete Pete is offline
  3. Old Comment
    This sounds very much like the 2nd movie from the creators of Bum Fights, but its doing the rounds under a different title, something like, Excutions, Terrorists and Middle East WackJobs.
    Very Extreme film if its the same one, if not then they share alot of footage.
    Comment with Quote permalink
    Posted 2nd August 2009 at 06:04 PM by vipco vipco is offline
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