The Green Inferno. 2013. USA. Directed by Eli Roth. Screenplay by Roth, Guillermo Amoedo. With Lorenza Izzo, Ariel Levy, Daryl Sabara, Kirby Bliss Blanton, Sky Ferreira, Magda Apanowicz, Nicolás Martinez, Aaron Burns, Ignacia Allaman, Ramón Llao and Richard Burgi. DCP. 100 min.
A naive Columbia University freshman, in South America on a mission to protect the Amazon forest and its people from destruction, is targeted by a petrochemical militia and captured by man-eating natives. Among the most influential of contemporary horror masters, Eli Roth has earned his reputation for gory extremity with movies like The Green Inferno. The film was praised by Stephen King as “a glorious throwback” to the sub-genre of 1970s and ’80s European cannibal films, and was criticized for exploitative, outdated stereotypes of Indigenous savagery. Despite Roth’s insistence that duplicitous oil interests are the evil at the film’s core, its controversial nature should be given serious consideration.