Imagine you are on vacation. You and your friends have picked out a lovely Greek island to stay at, with beautiful scenery, beaches to stroll along, and plenty of opportunity to just relax, without a care in the world. However, this remote island is not the paradise it seems. It is strangely uninhabited, save for a blind girl who doesn't know what happened to everyone else. However, there is one other here: a man the girl says smells of blood. And for him, it is now dinnertime.
The Anthropophagus Beast (1980) is an Italian horror film directed by Joe D'Amato. It was his first "straight" horror film. He had previously made erotic horror films such as Emmanuelle in America and Erotic Nights of the Living Dead.
The Anthropophagus Beast was co-written by D'Amato and Luigi Montefiori, who were long-time associates. Montefiori often co-wrote and held lead roles in D'Amato's films under the pseudonym of George Eastman. He's credited as George Eastman as both the co-writer and star of this movie.
The film also starred Tisa Farrow (sister of Mia), Saverio Vallone, Margaret Donnelly, Vanessa Steiger, Mark Bodin, Bob Larsen, Simone Baker, Mark Logan, Rubina Rey and Zora Kerova.
In the documentary Totally Uncut 2 D'Amato stated that the film was solely made for foreign markets; both the director and Montefiore claim that even though the film did very well in other countries it was a flop in Italy. Montefiore also revealed that he has never liked the film, though he did enjoy making it.
D'Amato followed up this film with a pseudo-sequel, Absurd (1981), also known as Zombie 6: Monster Hunter. In 1999, it had a remake known as Anthropophagous 2000, made by the director of Violent Shit, who somehow managed to make things Bloodier and Gorier. The 1981 film Porno Holocaust, also directed by Joe D'Amato and starring George Eastman, is something of a Parallel Porn Title.
This film contains examples of the following tropes:
- Anyone Can Die: Only two people survive to the ending credits. Neither of them is the blind girl or the pregnant woman.
- The Atoner: The insane sailor Klaus Wortmann believes that killing and eating people will help him atone for doing exactly that to his family. This is why he has no friends.
- Autocannibalism: Klaus's last dying act is to start gnawing on his own spilled intestines.
- Big Bad: Klaus Wortmann, the cannibal killing everybody.
- Cat Scare: While searching a basement, a kitten jumps down from the ceiling and onto the piano.
- Creator Cameo: Joe D'Amato is seen exiting a cable car.
- Disproportionate Retribution: And Misplaced Retribution. Carol locks Julie up in a cemetery because she saw her husband attempting to cheat on her. Never mind that Julie tried to talk him out of it. Which eventually leads to...
- Easily Forgiven: Carol apologizes to Julie for her attitude towards her, and Julie is quick to accept the apology.
- Eats Babies: Klaus eats a woman's unborn child in the film's most infamous scene.
- Final Girl: Julie fits the bill pretty well, though this is downplayed in the final confrontation when a previous victim turns up to be alive and gives a deadly blow to the killer.
- Generic Doomsday Villain: Beyond accidentally killing his wife while she tried to prevent him from eating their (dead) son, there's not a whole lot of reason given behind why Klaus likes to kill people.
- Gorn: One infamous scene involved Klaus strangling a pregnant woman while he ripped her fetus from her abdomen and ate it. At the end, when he is mortally wounded with a pickaxe, he starts pulling out his own intestines and munching on them before he dies.
- Gratuitous Greek: The title derives from the Greek word for "man-eater."
- I'm a Humanitarian: Klaus killed and ate everyone on the island except for the blind girl, and now intends to add the protagonists to his menu.
- Market-Based Title: The film goes by a different title depending on its market and cut, i.e. Anthropophagous, Anthropophagous: The Beast, The Grim Reaper, and even Zombie 7.
- No Party Like a Donner Party: The protagonists find a diary written by a man who shipwrecked on this island with his wife and child, and was forced to kill and eat them to survive.
- Not Quite Dead: In the end, the pregnant lady's husband, who we last saw getting impaled with a machete, not only turns out to have survived, but is the one who kills the killer in the end.
- Papa Wolf: The killer learns the hard way that the pregnant woman's husband is not happy that his wife and unborn child were murdered.
- Spoiler Cover: The ending is right on the poster as seen above.
- Tragic Monster: Klaus seems to have been intended as one, but due to his lack of character development he just comes off as being nasty and brutish for the sake of it.
- Traumatic C-Section: The infamous scene where Klaus rips the pregnant woman's unborn child from her womb and eats it.
- Video Nasties: The video has weathered a bit of controversy due to its grisly content.
- Accidental Murder: Nikos accidentally stabbing Martha.
- An Arm and a Leg: Hank has an arm ripped off by Nikos.
- And Starring: Special appearance by Andreas Schnaas as Nikos Karamanlis.
- Beach Bury: Nikos buries himself in the sand in order to ambush Mary.
- Body Horror: The sun and salt water destroyed Nikos's skin.
- Breast Attack: Nikos devours one of Martha's breasts.
- Camera Abuse: Blood splashes all over the camera while Nikos is beating Allan.
- Cat Scare: A cat jumping on a piano.
- Coincidental Broadcast: Except with newspapers, one of which bears the headline "Maniac Terminates Village".
- Curiosity Killed the Cast: Hank is killed searching for Allan, Marc and Stan looking for Vincent and Caroll, and Auriet looking for Marc.
- Determinator: Nikos keeps going, even after being shot several times, and disemboweled.
- Ear Ache: Nikos bites off one of Stan's ears.
- Fingore: Mary has some fingers chopped off by Nikos.
- Flashback Within a Flashback: Nikos recalling being lost at sea with his wife, and dead daughter.
- Framing Device: Interpol agent Steven Bauers finding Nikos's journal."Time has no meaning anymore. Here it begins and ends... the story of the Karamanlis family."
- Gainax Ending: Agent Bauers wonders how Nikos's journal got into the cave, and could be so thorough. He then finds Georg's cell phone, and is randomly shot in the face by an unseen assailant.
- Hope Spot: Marc running into Stan, and Georg and Rita finding the RV and cell phone.
- Horror Hunger: "Since then I need meat. Lots of meat from animals, but that doesn't stop my craving for blood. Red like blood, red - the color of the love. It's hard to describe the pain that's tearing me apart. It's like an eternal flame... an eternal hellfire...
- Impromptu Tracheotomy: Vincent is speared through the neck, then decapitated.
- Improvised Weapon: Nikos uses a rock to incapacitate Allan, and another de-fetus Caroll.
- Machete Mayhem: Nikos uses a machete to kill Stan.
- Man Bites Man: Nikos bites Stan's ear off, and rips Auriet's throat out.
- My Car Hates Me: "Maybe we ran out of gas or whatever. I don't know, it's not my fault. Fucking weather."
- Peek-a-Boo Corpse: Caroll opens the hood of the RV to discover Vincent's head.
- Shovel Strike: Georg uses a shovel to bludgeon and behead Nikos.
- Sickening "Crunch!": Hank's arm being snapped in half by Nikos, and Auriet having her back broken.
- Vomit Indiscretion Shot: One of the Interpol agents vomits while looking through the corpse-filled cave, and Caroll gets road sick.
- Would Hurt a Child: The ripped out baby moves and cries before being eaten by Nikos.