I Spit on Your Grave (1978) film Print Midnight Movie at Nitehawk


Camille Keaton, grand-niece of Buster and star of the thriller Cosa Avete Fatto a Solange?, appears here as Jenny, an aspiring novelist who rents a cabin in the Connecticut woods. Three rednecks at a local gas station and a retarded delivery boy seem quite friendly at first, and many viewers wonder just where director Meir Zarchi is going with the story. Then he drops them 200,000 feet right into the center of Hell for the longest, nastiest, and most brutal gang-rape in motion-picture history. Zarchi takes his time with this scene, not for the sake of titillation, but to make the audience feel the absolute horror of Jenny's plight. She is humiliated, sodomized over a rock, and brutally beaten in the middle of the woods. Then she crawls home, naked and bruised, only to get a repeat performance with her new novel shredded, her stomach kicked, and a bottle rammed violently inside her. The experience leaves Jenny shell-shocked, a cipher completely detached from reality. She hangs the delivery boy from a tree, gorily castrates the ringleader in a bathtub, and dispatches the other two rapists with an axe and an outboard motor. Eron TaborRichard PaceAnthony Nicholls, and Gunter Kleeman co-star. There's a reason why this one is commonly described as a "cult classic": its smallish audience has maxed out and will not grow beyond the number of admirers it has now. I Spit on Your Grave, like The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Last House on the Left, will never have the semi-mainstream audience of Night of the Living Dead or Sam Raimi's Evil Dead series because it is too gut-wrenching for the public at large. Look at what happens to poor Jennifer (played with total realistic abandon by Camille Keaton, who made a few B-movies before vanishing in 1989). The harrowing, near-pornographic torture she is put through for the first 30 minutes is excruciating to watch, and to do so requires a degree of third-person sadism few people will willfully admit to. It's disturbing as anything committed to celluloid. But it's all done to set up the revenge motif, and boy does it work. When Jennifer regains her strength and sets out to even the score, it is impossible not to respond with an authentic adrenaline rush of one's own. Shot on a budget of about 87 cents on leftover film stock seemingly hand-cranked through an antique camera, I Spit on Your Grave makes other low-budget independent horror films that came after it seem quaint. While its audience numbers may not expand, it will always remain stable because there is always another crop of budding horror fans who have heard of its reputation and will go out of their way to find out what everyone in their circle is talking about. And once they see it, they'll never forget it.

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  • Errol T.

    Very superb 100% to the max!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!­!!!!!!!!!

    August 19, 2013

  • Sheila C.

    at another meetup too far away to make it.

    1 · August 15, 2013

  • Errol T.

    I've seen this on VHS and DVD many times. I'd like to make it my first time seeing it on film for the first time.

    1 · July 22, 2013

  • steve

    I just realized I'm going to see Adam Ant on the 17th, so had to change the date to the 16th.

    1 · July 22, 2013

3 went

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Refunds are not offered for this Meetup.

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