Writer: Tom Six
Cast: Dieter Laser, Laurence R. Harvey, Bree Olson, Eric Roberts, Akihiro Kitamura, Bill Hutchens, Tom Six
Running time: 100mins
The lowdown: Six years after launching The Human Centipede onto the global stage, and four years after part II was banned in the UK before receiving a cut release, director Tom Six completes his trilogy. Dieter Laser, the mad scientist from the original, is here a prison warden, and Laurence R. Harvey, the psycho from the sequel, his hapless sidekick. Both are wracking their brains for a solution to an unruly prison population and find the cheeky solution staring them in the face, even if it’s likely to bum out the inmates. Shocking and profane as expected, but the joke has worn thin and the shocks now seems forced. Time for Six to find something new to chew on.
The full verdict: The Human Centipede trilogy is much like the original three-person creation from the first movie.
The front part is loud, wild and attention grabbing. The middle section deals with the true horror of the predicament. And the third part is where the shit comes out.
Here writer/director Six repeats the premise of The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence). Where that film was based in the real world with a psycho drawing ideas from the original film, this is based in the real real world, with both films providing inspiration.
But, the joke is this is the most artificial looking of the bunch, a prison movie shot in hot, sweaty widescreen on at times wobbly looking sets. And saddled with a lead performance from Laser as warden Billy Boss that is so overblown it’s uncertain whether Six has included rehearsal footage and outtakes.
If the first movie was in the spirit of David Cronenberg and the second in the grim tradition of Nekromantik director Jorg Buttgereit, with part III Six seems to be channeling the outrageous cartoon styles of John Waters (himself no stranger to fecal munching) and Russ Meyer.
Boasting the tagline, “100% politically incorrect” this is still adults only stuff. From the racial epithets Boss and the inmates hurl around, to a graphic castration, simulated fellatio, seemingly unsimulated fellatio, scalding waterboarding, and gnarly surgery as the 300+ person centipede is constructed, on paper there are plenty of talking points (all uncut by the BBFC this time around).
Yet, the nastiness seems strangely half-hearted. And long stretches are dedicated to Laser’s incomprehensible foul-mouthed ranting, tiresome way before his “creation” is unveiled to the governor (Eric Roberts, who can add this to his CV along with Sharktopus).
Stunt casting also extends to former pornstar and one time Charlie Sheen “goddess” Bree Olson as Boss’ PA-cum-sex slave, the only major female character in the film and given little to do (or wear). Olson’s Human Centipede 3 parody short is wittier than this official film.
As Boss’ sidekick, Butler (Six likes his obvious naming), Harvey delivers a genuinely good performance, the best scene being when he describes the centipede as the ultimate crime deterrent, along with the cost benefits of having just one prisoner instead of three-hundred.
Six turns up playing himself, endorsing Boss’s plan before amusingly vomiting when confronted with the mad warden’s “modifications”.
The meta-messiness continues with cast members from the first two instalments (Kitamura and Hutchens) lambasting those movies at a prison screening, Hutchens’ inmate declaring part II should be banned.
The final creation is spoilt on the movie poster, although Six has a memorable trick up his sleeve with what’s happened to the prison lifers.
Ultimately this more resembles a Syfy channel knock-off rather than the first two movies. So, The Human Centipede Vs. Megashark then?