Congratulations if you’ve managed to get this far, we’ve reached the tail end of the road (as of this review), the 'Final Sequence' is amongst us. How is the final instalment of the series you ask? Well, I have to report that the shock value ended with ‘The Full Sequence’.
It’s taken quite a few years to get this film made, there were some legal disputes between Dieter Laser and Tom Six’s company that led to the question if would ever get released, then the whole censorship fiasco with ‘The Full Sequence’ didn’t bode well if Six was aiming to make this the worst of the lot. Well, he succeeded in that. In the worst possible way.
Let’s move onto the plot, shall we?
Bill Boss (Dieter Laser) is the racist, misogynistic, homophobic and utterly insane warden of George W. Bush prison, a penitentiary noted for its high rates of guard assaults, prison riots, high medical bills and lack of successful rehabilitation. Dwight Butler (Lawrence R. Harvey), Boss’ accountant has an idea on how to resolve this, he shows Boss the first two Human Centipede films but Boss doesn’t give Dwight the time of day to even suggest the idea despite being under pressure from The Governor (Eric Roberts…yes, that Eric Roberts) to get their shit together otherwise they will lose their jobs. Instead of listening to Dwight, Boss is focused on bringing back medieval torture methods; boiling water boarding and mass castration. Fun stuff.
After all these attempts fail and Boss begins to grow more paranoid that the inmates will eventually get loose and kidney rape him to death and thus, finally willing to listen to Dwight’s suggestion of implementing the Human Centipede idea into their justice system. After some careful convincing, a meeting is set up with Tom Six (who plays himself); he agrees to let the duo use his idea for their prison. Boss then thinks it’s a good idea to showcase the first two films to the prisoners to show them what their fate is to become, which results in a prison riot, Boss’ secretary Daisy is injured in said riot for no other reason other than sexploitation and Boss becomes even more determined to create the centipede.
By this point we were probably two thirds of the way through the film and the assembling of the centipede FINALLY begins, which granted, is quite nasty. But before we get to the new surgery, we have to have a few more Nazi jokes wherein Bill Boss executes inmates who are unable to be a part of the centipede (one of which includes a colostomy bag) and instructs Robert LaSardo to be placed behind an inmate with Chron’s Disease. The operation has had some upgrades as the powers that be cannot permanently scar or maim the prisoners (this wasn’t an issue with castration or boiling waterboarding though?) therefore, instead of being stapled or grafted onto the anus, the victim is now connected via needle and thread…how this would actually work is anyone’s guess. This threading leaves a permanent scar around the lips, which is apparently a deterrent, because everyone knows that social stigma of being in a Human Centipede. The mouth is kept open using a gag and the knees are paralysed through regular injections. The posture is kept through retractable leather straps so that prisoners who serve their sentence can be released and sent back into society.
Sure, we get the five hundred person centipede as promised, for about five minutes of screen time before the film just suddenly ends with the happy ending that Six promised us. It’s a very disappointing conclusion to this franchise.
Where we had a psychological horror with ‘The First Sequence’ and then following that, an otherworldly, granted disgusting, almost snuff-film with ‘The Full Sequence’ however, ‘The Final Sequence’ is far from a horror film, this is a pure political satire comedy. However, what it fails with is that there is no storyline or redeemable characters at all, which is saying a lot for this specific franchise. The overacting becomes unbearable about one quarter of the way through the film especially from Laser, my finger was hovering over the mute button pretty much every single time he was on screen. At least some fun aspects about this film include a bunch of throwbacks to the previous entries including memorable lines and cameos from past centipede segments, but that’s really about it.
Coming back to the new method to assemble the centipede, although, sure, making it a method of punishment and ‘rehabilitation’ is an interesting angle but I can’t help but feel it completely removes the feeling of dread and horror with being in a Human Centipede. Sure, you still have to play brownie kisses with the person in front of you but there is no longer a fear of being stuck like that permanently, well, that is unless you’ve been convicted of a life sentence and become part of ‘The Human Caterpillar’, all in all, the new version of the operation isn’t quite as scarring in the long term. I know these kind of films would never have the budget to do this, but wouldn’t it be interesting to see the effects of The First Sequence fully healed without the stitches? We’ve yet to see and probably never will see, a successfully grafted centipede.
Now, I’m not usually a negative reviewer, I try to find the best in anything that I take the time to watch, however, finding redeeming qualities in The Final Sequence is next to impossible, I really wanted to like this movie as a send-off to the franchise but it is absolute garbage. I’m actually finding it hard to write about because it is so devoid of character and substance, it’s about as deep as puddle and that’s being generous. It’s the result of Tom Six getting to love happy with this reputation he has received from those who are disgusted by this film, where ‘The Full Sequence’ indeed was more provocative in terms of graphical violence, at least the film explored a message and had incredible cinematography.
It’s disappointing the franchise had to end this way (as far as this review goes, I have heard rumours of a fourth part including aliens), we could’ve had a totally different angle and the most outrageous instalment of the franchise yet. Well, it lives up to be being the most outrageous but in the worst possible way. Much like the centipede diagram, the tail end gets all of the shit from the other segments and that is exactly what has happened here.
It may be 100% politically incorrect, but it is also 100% not worth your time.
Images: IMDb, ibtimes.com, vulture.com