Two teenage girls on their way to a concert are captured by a gang of criminals and taken into the woods, where they are beaten, raped and humiliated. This 1972 film is Wes Craven’s movie debut and it is quite a way for him to start. This movie has such a raw, real feel to it that it is actually kind of hard to watch at times. The victims (Sandra Cassell and Lucy Grantham) do an outstanding job showing fear (it is said this is because they actually WERE scared during the shooting). There are a couple rape scenes, murder, humiliation and more, and this movie does not apologize at all for any of it. The gang, as brutal as they are, at times come across as somewhat likeable and caring, briefly showing a bit of discomfort and remorse after one scene, and you may find yourself actually hoping one or two of them gets away in the end.
Be warned: This movie does not go for a happy ending. It leaves you with a feeling that all hope is lost for everybody. Oddly, with all the gloom in this movie, there are actually a couple funny spots, giving the film a very disjointed feel to it, leaving the viewer truly not knowing what to expect next. They did a fantastic job with the music here too. It flows just as the movie does, from an eerie “The road leads to nowhere” tune that comes up throughout to some strange poppy, windy sounding music (complete with kazoo!!) that these early 70’s movies were filled with. Make no mistake: this is a grindhouse movie and it is not for everybody (actually, it’s not for many). I personally like it a lot, even if it is hard to keep watching at times.
On A Scale Of One To Ten: 8