The Green Elephant
"An underground Russian nasty directed with the feel of an August Underground
home-video but the artsy and social pretensions of Salo
. Four macho Russians converse in a disgustingly squalid correctional building and abuse each other, each befitting his rank in the military and his social status. The lowest, filthy peasant and military reject attempts to converse and connect with the higher levels but only get humiliation and abuse. One man finds his place through humiliation and subservience, but the independent hero fights the system for his dignity with nasty violent results. The abuse escalates to violence, homosexual rape, coprophilia, and gory disemboweling. Intercut with the movie are some black and white scenes, perhaps making comparisons to civilization. The dialogue is endlessly and absurdly aggressive and filthy, like a caricature of testosterone-fueled males as portrayed by a feminist. A shock-oriented repulsive movie that makes points about aggression, the military and social hierarchies, human freedom and male relationships... but the extreme filth was unnecessary."
) is a Russian arthouse gore/splatter
film. It tells a story of two unnamed junior officers of the Russian army, court-martialled into a basement, with unfortunate consequences. Not just exploring themes of humiliation, army violence, suicide and coprophilia, but actually showing these things in close up, it's forbidden in its home country from mainstream distribution circuits, but not from film festivals. Nevertheless, it can be easily found on YouTube
. However, the main appeal of this movie is not as much in its graphic disgustingness as it is in its weird dialogue and absurdist humor, which is mostly Lost in Translation
. For this reason the film gained notoriety, and somewhat of a cult following, in Russian internet, particularly imageboards
. Quotes and monologues from the film are often used as copypasta
Contains examples of:
- Cluster F-Bomb
- Corpsing: The cinematographer (or, as it's a No Budget production, just the guy holding the camcorder) can be heard snickering at some of the lines several times.
- Disproportionate Retribution: The captain gets raped and dissected for repeatedly abusing the detained officers.
- Fetish Retardant: Invoked in Pakhom's story about his first time.
- Gorn: Arguably. Although the film is quite serious, hardly anyone pities the captain being mutilated by Officer #1.
- Evil Gloating: The captain lecturing Pakhom/Officer #2 on Japanese warplanes. It's more evil than it sounds.
- Large Ham: The guard/"colonel", with his tirades on the degradation of the Russian army. Officer #1 has his moments too.
- Le Film Artistique
- Locked in a Room
- Nameless Narrative: None of the characters is ever named within the work. Outside the work, names of actors and military titles are often used.
- No Budget: Made on a three-kopeck budget with a camcorder.
- Nonstandard Character Design: "Colonel" again. Not only his appearances are shot in deliberate monochrome, his speech is much more theatrical and hammy as opposed to mundane swearing of other characters, but he also wears a head full of curly hair, which is unrealistic for his apparently low military rank.
- Old Shame: Yepifantsev, who has since found fame in more mainstream productions, is still somewhat embarrassed about his role.
- Precision F-Strike: Although characters swear constantly, some of their epithets are very precise.
- "Охуительная история" — "Fucking amazing story".
- Rape as Drama: Well, they were probably going for drama.
- Realistic Diction Is Unrealistic: Completely averted.
- Russians with Rusting Rockets
- Seinfeldian Conversation: Oodles of it.
- Stop Helping Me!: Pakhom genuenly cares for his newfound friend and is ready to cheer him up with his amazing stories. He is also ready to sacrifice his last slice of "bread" for his friend. Sadly, Yepifantsev does not appreciate it.
- Straight Man and Wise Guy: Yepifantsev and Pakhom.
- Tempting Fate: In the beginning, Yepifantsev/Officer #1 worries that water dropping from sewage tubes will drive him crazy. It is the last thing to worry about.
- Throw It In: Most of the dialogue was improvised by the actors.
- Unusual Euphemism: "cone"/"lump".
- Word Salad Title: Almost Makes Sense In Context. There is an eponimous song in the movie, although why the elphant is green, and what the song has to do with anything other in the movie, is never explained.
I'm fucking fed up with your stories, I can't listen to them anymore. One story is more fucking amazing than another. About tropes, about some other shit, squick, the fuck are you talking about? Can you shut up? Became popular on imageboards — gained cult following. The fuck? What are you talking about? Shit.