Mondo Cane/Mondo Pazzo 2003 Horror Movie Review
Horror movies Review
“Mondo Cane” (“It’s a Dog’s World”) might not have been the first shockumentary, but this 1962 film is the first such film to get a wide viewing. I cannot believe they actually showed this to us in high school (WHAT were they thinking?). Then again, I have to admit I have never forgotten the sight of a guy with a sword cutting off a bull’s head with one swing or the bugs prepared for dinner.
The film offers an initial disclaimer that says, in part, “the duty of the chronicler is not to sweeten the truth but to report it objectively”. Of course, this is the justification for this fascinating and repulsive look at outrageous things around the world. Writer and co-director Gualtiero Jacopetti travels back and forth around the world between the so-called civilized and primitive worlds, creating all sorts of ironic frames of meaning (aided and abetted by thinly veiled sarcastic narration). In Rome chicks are dye bright colors for Easter eggs while a tribe out in the jungles waits five years to slaughter a hundred pigs and have a big feast. Of course, there are better examples, but it seems kind of pointless to spoil the fun by telling you the best shocks in a film that was considered the “most argued about film” on earth when it was first released in 1963.
This 107-minute Italian film is in French, with English subtitles, and was helped with its legitimacy by the fact its theme song “More” was nominated for an Oscar. On the one hand it is relatively tame given what we see in movies today, but then it does have the virtue of being documentary fact rather than special effects fiction. Still, I have to believe that “Mondo Cane” will be of more interest to those on whom it made an impression way back when, rather than winning new generations of viewers. But remember, sooner or later, this film will make you drop your jaw at something. You were warned.