Rape, Revenge, Repeat in I Spit On Your Grave
SyFy Network house director Steven R. Monroe remakes Meir Zarchis 1978 quintessential revenge-rape/rape-revenge film. Jennifer (Sarah Butler) rents a cabin in black-mud, backwoods Louisiana to work in peace on her second novel. An encounter with a local gas-station attendant (Jeff Branson) that crackles with class anxiety starts him and his cronies percolating the idea of knocking the laptop-and-white-wine city bitch off her pedestal. A nighttime home invasion becomes all the more lurid with the false-salvation arrival of dawn and Andrew Howards rasp-voiced Sheriff. After absorbing every abuse save a coup de grace, Jennifers despoiled body slips away. Theres little chance to judge our heroines prowess as a novelist, but she proves herself very, very talented at bonking her rapists over the head and devising horrible tortures for them when she returns as avenging angel, which is convincing as long as Butler doesnt talk. These second-act torments arent merely premeditated, but blueprinted. The mirror image of the cabin reflected in dark, boggy water works as a metaphor for the movies structure. Everything that happens in the first part happens againonly in reverse and more so. When every injury is repaid with interest, this self-destroying work has nowhere to go but to the credits. Such symmetry is a dismal, barbarian sort of perfection.
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