Cannibal Holocaust (1980) is a controversial exploitation horror film directed by Ruggero Deodato, telling the tale of four documentarians who journey deep into the Amazon rainforest to film the indigenous tribes. When they fail to return, anthropologist Harold Monroe leads a second expedition to rescue the first group. He ultimately finds their lost cans of film, through which he learns of their grisly fate.Controversy followed this infamous "video nasty''; after its premiere in Italy, the film was seized and Deodato arrested on obscenity charges. He was later accused of making a snuff film due to rumors that actors were killed on camera. While he was cleared on all charges, the film was banned in Italy, the UK, Australia (where it was eventually passed uncut), and several other countries due to its graphic depiction of gore, sexual violence, and the inclusion of six genuine animal deaths.In 1981 a rip-off was made by Umberto Lenzi called Cannibal Ferox.
Banned In China: And a whole lot of other countries. The most notable exceptions were Japan, where it was slapped with an R-18 rating, and the United States, where the only penalty for its depiction of gore was the dreaded X rating (issued by the MPAA). Eventually, a few more countries (most notably Australia) passed it uncut. As of May 2011, the UK's only problem with the film is the turtle, monkey and snake being killed onscreen (though a cut version has been released with the highest UK rating).
Forever War: The Yanamono and the Shamatari, the Tree People and the Swamp People respectively. These tribes have been going since the dawn of time and are still locked in a fierce war of rape, murder, and cannabalism.
Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: One of the more famous images from the film shows a native girl impaled lengthwise so the point of the stake comes out her mouth. No points for guessing where it went in.
Mean Character, Nice Actor: Basically most of the cast. Carl Gabriel Yorke (Alan) flew down to the Amazon having no idea what the movie was about, and became convinced after a while they were filming a real snuff film. Perry Pirkanen (playing the despicable Jack) was traumitized by having to actually kill animals and cried uncontrollably after they filmed him killing the turtle.
Mighty Whitey: Yates' team are arrogant enough to believe the natives fear their 'powers'. This doesn't stop them from being killed and eaten by the Yanamono tribe.
Averted twice, in that the scene where they cut off a monkey's face with a machete was actually shot twice. You read that right.
A coatimundi (mistaken as a muskrat in the film) has its jugular veins cut open by Miguel.
A large turtle (about three feet long) is captured in the water and dragged to shore, where it is then decapitated and its limbs, shell, and entrails are removed. The turtle is then cooked and eaten.
A large spider and a snake are killed with machete.
A pig is kicked twice and then shot.
Noble Savage: While not exactly the prime example of this trope, the natives are certainly not evil. They allow the search party to look for the film crew and as soon as they follow the rules and show respect to the tribe, they're welcome and accepted. The only reason they killed and ate the film crew was because they killed many of their tribesmen and raped one of their women.
Pragmatic Villainy: Faye is upset at the rape of a native woman... because recording it is a waste of film footage.
Rape and Revenge: While the film crew had done plenty of ugly things to the natives, the Yanomamo tribe finally get fed up with their shit when one of their women is gang-raped by the crew, leading to one of the most horrific revenge scenes ever filmed.
Rape, Pillage, and Burn: The film crew burning down the Yacumo village to stage a scene for their documentary. In fact, all of the film crew's actions; in a literal way, they managed to score each of the three.
Viral Marketing: The movie advertised itself as a true story, and the actors were contractually bound to avoid public appearances as to keep people think it was real. Remember anything? It worked too well since the director was arrested for multiple murder until he could prove that it was just a movie - which he had to void the original contracts of the actors to accomplish.