Caligula Reincarnated as Hitler/White Slave
By: Mr Intolerance on March 6, 2007  |  Comments  |  Bookmark and Share
Shock-O-Rama (USA). Region 1, NTSC. 4:3. English DD 2.0. 182 minutes
The Movie
Director: Cesare Canevari/Mario Gariazzo
Starring: Adriano Micantoni, Daniela Poggi, Maristella Greco, Fulvio Ricciardi, Antiniska Nemour/Elvire Audray, Will Gonzales, Dick Campbell, Andrea Coppola, Dick Marshall
Screenplay: Cesare Canevari, Antonio Lucarella/Franco Prosperi
Music: Alberto Baldan Bembo/Franco Campanino
Country: Italy
Year: 1977/1985
Well, here's a double bill guaranteed to make your DNA cry itself to sleep at night…

Besides maybe The Beast In Heat (AKA SS Hell Camp, La Bestia in Calore), Caligula Reincarnated as Hitler would have to rate as possibly the worst of the Italian Nazi-exploitation films of the late 70s. Seriously, this film has zero in the way of redeeming features. It is possibly the most tasteless thing I have ever watched – and that takes some doing, believe me.

We basically get a framed narrative of the camp commandant and the prisoner he becomes obsessed with, meeting for what appears to be some kind of romantic tryst many years after the war AT THE CAMP!!! George Orwell once said about an enemy of his, "It takes a lot of guts to be that openly a skunk." That's kind of how I feel about the director of this film. Imagine that: a romantic rendezvous at a place where thousands were tortured, molested, "experimented" on, and ultimately murdered. Personally, I'd prefer a restaurant.

I must admit, these Nazi-exploitation films are a guilty pleasure of mine because they are so awful, both in terms of aesthetics as a film watcher, and in terms of their lack of taste. I mean, who the fuck financed these things? Can you imagine being approached by a filmmaker and asked for cash to make a film about an SS sex-camp?

Apart from anything else, the basic premise is historically all fucked up: German soldiers go to a field brothel which is "staffed" by Jewish women. Doesn't that contradict the whole racial purity thing? The scriptwriter tries to justify it with some specious nonsense about the fact that as "enemies" they are there to be "conquered for the glory of the Third Reich", and be "made to suffer" (sexually, of course) – but it's historically inaccurate in a way I thought only David Irving and his historical revisionist buddies could be.

Think of this as a really super-uber-low-budget Night Porter, but with none of the artistic pretensions. This thing was simply made to give sickos with a Nazi-fetish a thrill. It has all the hallmarks of the genre: an ice-queen SS bitch (who in this particular case gets her rocks off throwing menstruating Jewish women to her pack of Dobermans to be eaten alive), a sexually bizarre camp commandant (in this film, he discovers a woman, Lisa, who has no fear of death and so tries to break her spirit – but has a weird S&M relationship with the ice-queen, too), a "good" Nazi (the camp doctor), lesbian action (there's a bit of it on offer), sexual torture (there's a hysterical sequence where Lisa is bound, nekkid and upside-down and lowered into a cage of gerbils who are meant to be rats – but believe me, you can tell they're gerbils – when the commandant puts his hand in the cage, they're very friendly and kinda cute), revenge (there's a bit of this, too – it's as unconvincing as the rest of this piece of rubbish), and loads and loads of nekkid women (that's not a bad thing, I hasten to add – I love nekkid women; preferably every Thursday, 'round at my place…).

Worst line in cinema history: "There's nothing better than pot-roast of unborn Jew!" This particular line is delivered while a bunch of SS are having some kind of celebratory dinner, and this nutcase professor is expounding his theory to use the Jews as a cheap labour force before harvesting them for the table. No, seriously. That is the level of entertainment on offer. They then proceed to the next worst line in cinema history. One of the Jewish women serving at the table faints – she's stripped nekkid and put on the table, doused in cognac and set alight after one of the Nazis suggests: "She'd make a fine crepe suzette!" What the fuck were the scriptwriters thinking?! I'm of the opinion, probably not too much.

I did notice that the DVD copy I own is grainy, has poor audio transfer and burnt-in English dubbing – not even some of the more fearless big name exploitation DVD distributors have touched this one, not Anchor Bay (who market the Ilsa films), not Blue Underground (they put out Night Train Murders fercrissakes!), not Shriek Show (have you fuckin' seen House on the Edge of the Park?), not Grindhouse (hello Cannibal Holocaust!). I think that would give you some idea of how no-one wants to touch this bastard. Let's face facts – if you put out something this un-PC and had major distribution, I think you'd find you suddenly wouldn't have major distribution any longer.

The average human being would find this a thoroughly repugnant film. Personally, I find it blackly entertaining in some regards, particularly in that it tries to be a serious film and fails so dismally, ending up simply as a woeful exercise in horribleness. On my list of worst ten films of all time, this bee-yatch is right down there. And that's saying something.

In some parts of the world, this film is known as The Gestapo's Last Orgy. Y'know, it's never even explained WHY it's their last orgy. The allies don't show up for quite some time. Matter of fact, there isn't really even what I'd call an orgy!

The second feature on this DVD is White Slave, and I point-blank refuse to waste any time on reviewing in detail what is definitely the worst jungle exploitation film EVER. This film could be used by "serious" critics to prove that exploitation films are not a viable form of entertainment. The "acting" is so bad it made me vomit blood out of my arse. No, really – every time the talentless bimbo playing Catherine Miles, our lead character (this is supposedly based on a true story, by the way), appeared, I could feel my precious arse-blood being drawn to the screen.

This is a shoddy piece of inferior quality merchandise, cashing in far too late on a once-fashionable, if rather tasteless, fad. Acting: poor to terrible. Direction: you mean there was a director? Gore: practically none. Atmosphere: non-existent. Entertainment factor: zero. Mid-way through watching it I discovered myself re-reading Dark Knight Returns. This really pissed me off, 'cos then I had to go back and watch the gottverdammt thing again.

I think we're all in agreement that in Italian jungle exploitationers, regardless of whether they're blood and guts shockers like Cannibal Ferox, or action adventurers like Eaten Alive!, there are many necessary conventions:

1. Gratuitous product placement of J&B scotch bottles
2. Cannibals who have teeth like Goofy and bad Beatles wigs
3. Robert Kerman
4. Me Me Lai
5. Gore, gore and more gore! Gut-munching-a-Go-Go!
6. Reasonably explicit simulated sex, and/or loads of nudity
7. Soundtracks composed almost entirely of drum machines and synths

This film does not deliver the goods in terms of most of the above, although I am told that the version I've seen is a bit cut in the violence department. What really made me want to rip my eyes out of their sockets, stick my big toes in the weeping bloody holes and spin around on my back on a bed of broken glass however would have to be the romance element. I'm not down with romance. And exactly how do you fall in love with a member of a tribe who have kidnapped you and taken you away from all that you held dear? What is this – Stockholm syndrome? I'm not buying it.

And I can't believe the evil bastards who foisted this sickening bilge upon an unsuspecting cosmos actually had the temerity to think of titling it Cannibal Holocaust 2: The Catherine Miles Story, in an effort to make more cash, thus sullying the name of one of the greatest horror films of all time.

The nerve of some people.
Awful. Worse than VHS on both films. Full screen, too, and no compensating for things subsequently being out of shot in the transfer; that is to say, no pan and scan. Non-anamorphic picture, and plenty of artefacts to keep you at a consistently high level of irritation.
Equally as craptacular as the video. No discernable care or effort has been taken to make this even half decent. Pops, crackles, hisses and burnt-in dubbing; an audiophile's nightmare.
Extra Features
A bunch of trailers for some films that look like real DIY jobs. I've never heard of any of them: Cannibal Doctor, The Duct Tape Killer, New York Wildcats, Lustful Addiction, Dr Jekyll and Mistress Hyde, Sin Sisters. They look to be full to the brim with sadistic violence, nudity and softcore. And that's all you get on the extras front.
The Verdict
Avoid, unless you're into the whole Italian Exploitation thang. And then only to be viewed once as a bit of a cinematic curio. If you can stomach Caligula Reincarnated as Hitler (and you have been warned – it is appallingly tasteless), don't waste your time on White Slave; it commits that most heinous of exploitation film crimes – it's boring. So this disc is really only the one film, plus a bunch of highly entertaining trailers. I don't think very much time or effort were spent on this disc, and that lack of care shows. Compare this to, say, Anchor Bay 's Bruno Mattei double feature Hell of the Living Dead/Rats and see how a proper company does it (incidentally, they're far superior films). I knocked off a point for the truly awful packaging, which looks like inferior quality fetish porn.
Movie Score
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