Michael Mashburn (Jules Sceiro) and Antwon Mercer (Bob Glazer), two Viet Nam war vets, have recorded their pastime of kidnapping, torturing, and killing anyone they choose to. Will their reign of brutality continue, or will they get caught up in their own ‘Amerikan Holokaust’?
‘Ameikan Holokaust’, the first feature from Chris Woods and John Miller of The Sleaze Box fame, is a gore-soaked found-footage nightmare. The footage is composed of the duo’s sinister deeds, inter-cut with their rants about their worldview, which had its genesis in the jungles of ‘Nam where they could do whatever they wanted and pay no consequences. While some of the acting is good, and some not as good, the overall look of the film is pretty convincing. The cast looks like regular people…no CW-types to be found here. The lack of plastic beauty helps convince the viewer that this is real nastiness…and nastiness abounds here. Sadism, cannibalism, face-stabbing, tooth-pulling, eyeball-popping, disemboweling …not to mention seeing some folks naked that you’d rather not see naked. Unpleasant, yes, but it does help sell the film’s basic found footage concept. There’s a bit of dark humor and some surprises to be found in the story as well, that you’ll have to see for yourselves.
The Vietnam back-story helps too, I think, with the overall Exploitation vibe. Most of the classic American Horror/Exploitation films were made in the early 70s. The Summer of Love was over, people were seeing the dark side of the American Dream, and disillusionment with the government about the war in ‘Nam…this was all fodder for the filmmakers of that era, consciously or not, and I think “Amerikan Holokaust’ taps into those feelings. Also, it flips the usual Hollywood expectations of the veteran hero (Rambo, etc.) and instead gives us two individuals who, if they weren’t already twisted beforehand, definitely came out the war that way.
Dark, unpleasant, and downright nasty, this is not a film for everyone…but if you’re willing to be challenged and possibly offended, check out ‘Amerikan Holokaust’. See the trailer at www.thesleazebox.com.