I Spit on Your Grave — an infamous 1978 grindhouse rape-and-revenge exploitation film also known as Day of the Woman — follows the story of Jennifer Hills, an aspiring writer from New York who rents a riverside cabin out in the woods so she can work on her first novel in peace. She catches the eye of four local rednecks (Johnny, Andy, Stanley and Matthew, the last of which seems mentally handicapped) who decide to harass Jennifer while she sunbathes. That night, the rednecks harass her while she lies in bed. The day after that, the rednecks kidnap her from her boat, pull her ashore, and rape her in some of the lengthiest, most realistic, and goddamned disturbing rape scenes in film history. (They also mock and rip up her novel.)After the rapists leave the scene of their crime, they order Matthew — who had previously shown some affection for Jennifer and didn't want to participate in the rapes — to go back and kill Jennifer. Matthew cannot bring himself to do it, so he smears blood on the knife to make it look like he did. Thanks to Matthew's mercy, Jennifer eventually recovers, and over the next few days, she goes on her own personal Roaring Rampage of Revenge. She starts by seducing Matthew before she hangs him from a tree. She then finds Johnny and holds him at gunpoint — and then she invites him back to her house, where she takes a bath with him, castrates him with a kitchen knife, and leaves him to bleed to death. To cap her rampage off, she swims out to Andy and Stanley's boat, pushes them overboard, then axes one in the back and disembowels the other with the propeller — and before she finishes the job, she shouts out exactly what he had told her while he raped her:"Suck it, bitch!".Director Meir Zarchi reportedly got the idea for the film after he assisted a rape victim in Central Park. Camille Keaton, grand-niece of Buster Keaton and Meir Zarchi's wife at the time, played the role of Jennifer. The film ended up placed on Britain's infamous Video Nasties list, and as such, it carries a certain level of infamy to this day.Roger Eberthated thisfilm.A 2010 remake adds a new character, Sheriff Storch, and a stylistic difference from the original: the middle act of the film follows the gang of rapists rather than Jennifer by showing a montage of the rednecks going on with their lives before strange things begin to happen to them (in a way reminscient of I Know What You Did Last Summer). The effect of this change makes it look as if each redneck fears that someone knows what they did — or that one of them has turned on the others.Roger Ebert didn't like theremake, either. (He probably would have felt the same way about the remake's 2013 sequel if he had lived to see it.)
I Spit On Your Grave contains examples of the following tropes:
Chekhov's Gun: While jogging Jennifer comes across a cabin, and later sees some bottle of lye in a shed. It is later revealed she took refuge and nursed her wounds in the cabin. She also kills her rapists there, one of them with the lye.
Dirty Cop: The remake's Sheriff Storch falls under this trope.
Dirty Coward: Johnny pisses himself during Jennifer's revenge. She reacts with extreme disgust, commenting even the other men didn't do this.
The Ditz: The film tries to portray Matthew as mentally retarded — but even the other rapists look dumb. The group orders the one person who had shown some reluctance to violate Jennifer to kill her. One of them even accepts an invitation to hop in her car and take a bath with her, even though she had held him at gunpoint seconds earlier. Ah well, anyone who saw the movie or read this article knows what happens to him.
Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Johnny seems to really love his children, and when his wife comforts her son while waiting for him to return, it does seem a bit heartbreaking — until you remember that Johnny raped (and nearly killed) a woman.
Heartbreaking from the innocent children's eyes who know nothing of their father's evil, unlike the viewer.
The sheriff in the remake also has a wife and a daughter, with another baby on the way. He seems to genuinely love them.
Even Evil Has Standards: Matthew can not bring himself to kill Jennifer, and even seems disturbed by some of the things his friends do to her, not that he does (or can do) anything to help.
Enforced Method Acting: In the original, the real reason Matthew's hanging death throes look so realistic was because the actor was scared to death of heights and having a panic attack.
Eye Scream: In the remake, one of Jennifer's rapists — who has a distinct voyeuristic bent — films the attack. In her revenge kill, Jennifer puts hooks through his eyelids. She later spreads fish guts across his face, leading to crows eating his eyes.
Fan Disservice: If the rape scenes from either the original or the remake arouse you, or you find the full body shots of the naked, battered, dirt-covered Jennifer even the least bit erotic, then we'd like to ask you to turn yourself in to the nearest psychiatric facility and get some help.
Fanservice: The posters and the DVD cases for the original film depict Jennifer walking around in a torn up shirt and panties — and the poster design for the remake arguably looks even more sexualized.
Prior to the attack, Jennifer is shown in a bikini and jogging clothes.
Hope Spot: In the remake Jennifer manages to run away before they rape her and runs into the sheriff. The film lets you think he might help her, only for him to turn out to be as bad as the rest.
I Have Your Wife: In the 2010 remake, Jennifer captures Sheriff Storch's daughter to flush him out. What happens to her is never revealed.
Ironic Echo: The original gets one with "Suck it, bitch!" The remake raises the number of lines that get an ironic echo to about a dozen.
Jerkass: All of the rapists, except for possibly Matthew.
Karmic Death: In the remake, Jennifer's revenge upon each of her rapists reflects the manners in which they degraded, tortured, and violated her.
Kick the Dog: While it very much pales in comparison to what else they did to her, the rapists mock and rip up Jennifer's novel during her assault.
Mean Character, Nice Actor: The special features on the remake all show the rapists to be played be decent men. They emphasize the trust they built with Sarah Butler (who played Jennifer), all understanding that they were to stop immediately if she became too uncomfortable.
Meaningful Name: In the 2010 version, Storch's daughter is named "Chastity".
Never Found the Body: The rapists are smart enough to realize this, and the sheriff even demands that they find and properly dispose of the body. In the remake Jennifer is shown strangling Matthew, but we neither see his body nor her finish it. Turns out she left him alive until the end.