REEL ADVICE: Diary of a Cannibal
Well, folks, you've walked into a real doozy this week. You've walked into the midst of me about to unchain a mass of hyperbole the likes of which you have not seen from me, at least not since the last time I took on a movie from the new German wonder of the godawful movie realm. No, not Uwe Boll--but rather a man so reprehensible, so vile, and so utterly unworthy of a budget to make films that he is now the new topper of my personal video store shit list: Ulli Lommel.
And the newest pile of steaming cinematic crapola brought to us by this crime against video store patrons, Diary of a Cannibal, is basically eighty minutes of flashbacks and assorted revelations on the way to yield just one central theme. One day, a girl named Noelle Scanlon killed her boyfriend and ate his heart. At his request.
"I killed my boyfriend and ate his organs because he really, really wanted me to."
And this is an eighty minute movie.
Is anyone actually watching Ulli Lommel's ridiculous torture-porn fantasies any more besides us poor bastard critics whose job it is to tear hell out of this asshole's work every time he puts up yet another waste of DVD plastic on our shelves? I hope not. Earnestly. I hope that everyone who pokes their browser and points it in my direction is taking my warnings about a cinematic schlockmeister so unadulteratedly lousy he would no doubt make even Uwe Boll blush in shame.
All of Ulli Lommel's classic problems are well in evidence here in Diary of a Cannibal. His work is, as a rule, slow in pace, badly disjointed, continually repetitive, and of course packed with enough pointless (and often poorly rendered) gore to make any kind of enjoyment impossible. For some reason, he has also decided to pack his movie with occasionally accurate Bible quotes, and frankly, starting off a movie about cannibalism with the quote from Jesus Christ that goes "He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him" is a perfect example of the kind of vaguely blasphemous and utterly juvenile nanner-nanner that Lommel is constantly chucking at his audience. Perhaps even better is the inclusion of stock footage of lambs at a slaughterhouse being visibly torn open and rendered following one of the quotes.
Worse, his dialogue is purely godawful--upon meeting each other for the first time, Noelle and future lunch Adam, who had been previously chatting over the Internet for some undetermined length of time, exchange the following:
"I'm Adam." "Hi, Adam. I'm Noelle."
Wow. What's the matter, Ulli--lose your German/English phrase book?
But frankly, in this case, it's almost okay that Lommel can't write dialogue to save his life. He didn't include very much of it! Entire stretches will go by without so much as a word spoken; one is forced to wonder if Lommel was paying his actors by the word and was running out of money after blowing the five bucks to option that slaughterhouse footage. Of course, when you've included such opulent sets as a warehouse and a hospital that looks very much like a warehouse, you probably didn't have that much cash to begin with.
The ending is a series of flashbacks to events that did not happen in the film, a beating, and a series of childhood photos of Noelle and future lunch. Oh, and apparently, Lommel was so utterly bereft of ways to waste investors' money that he had to plunder the news to dig this garbage up--Diary of a Cannibal is allegedly based on a true story.
The special features include English and Spanish subtitles, a commentary track, and trailers for Diary of a Cannibal, The Lost Room, Beneath Still Waters, Gamebox 1.0, Rancid and Alien Invasion Arizona.
All in all, avoid Ulli Lommel movies. At all costs. They will be utter wastes of money, not worth even a rental. The sooner we stop watching him, the sooner he will go away.