A beautiful presentation from all those involved, as 88Films bring us no.42 in The Italian Collection. We watch the events of Catherine’s (Elvire Audrey) ordeal as she regales a courtroom of what took place after the murder of her parents and her subsequent abduction by a tribe of savages.
One of the coolest romantic horror movies I’ve ever seen…
When it comes to films such as Amazonia, there’s a particular bad habit of misrepresentation. For example, the movie tries to emulate Cannibal Holocaust’s notoriety by claiming to be a true story. Only fitting as this picture actually masqueraded as an actual sequel in certain countries at the time of its release. All that bloody violence aside, films such as this and Man From Deep River (1972) are genuinely interesting dramatic tales that have little to do with cannibalism, as advertised, that have been passed up on some deserved praise for the sake of their bad reputations.
Amazonia, perhaps, has the most exciting storyline I’ve come across over the course of my discovery of the infamous cannibal boom. It features betrayal, murder, survival, revenge and love. It even throws in a twist. While Catherine’s slow-grinding vendetta drives the film’s narrative, it is her growing relationships with different members of the tribe that carry the story. Some of the movie’s saddest moments come to pass when she must respect and obey their way of life, which makes for one hell of a heart-breaking conclusion. Elvire’s performance is passable, but she doesn’t really take it up a notch until her big revenge scene towards her story’s end. There’s certainly a fire in those eyes.
Don’t get me wrong, Amazonia has its nasty streak. In fact, the special effects here are much stronger than most of its ‘kind’. I even let out a couple of audible ‘whoa!”s , one being during a head explosion worthy of classic Fulci. There are also some unfortunate animal-on-animal scenes, but it’s the same circle of life / natural selection business you’ll be sure to find on the Discovery Channel. Thankfully there are absolutely no turtle mutilations in sight!
I think what we have here is a beautiful movie and a gripping story with gore and killing that doesn’t really need to be there. It’s still cool. Practical horror effects are my happy place. But do they fit in here? Not necessarily. But they’re here, and they’re not going anywhere, so this just might be one of the coolest romantic horror movies I’ve ever seen.