Emanuelle and The Last Cannibals
Release Year: 1977
Cast: Laura Gemser, Gabriele Tinti, Nieves Navarro, Donald O’Brien, Percy Hogan, Mónica Zanchi, Annamaria Clementi
Genres: Classic, Feature, Softcore, Drama, Adventure
Video language: English
Acclaimed photo-journalist Emanuelle (Laura Gemser) is undercover taking photographs for an exposé of a New York mental hospital when she witnesses a nurse who has had her nipple bitten off by a patient. The patient turns out to have a curious tribal tattoo which Emanuelle discovers is that of an apparently extinct Amazon cannibal tribe. She meets up with anthropologist Mark Lester (Gabriele Tinti) who she encourages to help lead an expedition into the Amazon to research an article on the tribes. In the jungle they meet up with Wilkes whose daughter Isabelle is heading up river to deliver supplies to a missionary. As the group camp by the river on an evening they bump into hunter Donald McKenzie (Donal O’Brien) who tells them that the missionary’s camp has been destroyed by savages. The next morning the groups discover that one of their crew has been brutally slaughtered and their boats are missing – they have to begin the perilous cross-country trek back to safety…
The storyline opens in typical Black Emanuelle film fashion, although the build-up to the arrival in the rainforest seems to be very quickly hurried over with the almost comical result that an expedition into the Amazon seems to be planned in a single day (and consist of no more than two people). From here on there are no real links to the established Emanuelle character aside from the fact that she takes a few photographs – the character could easily have been in the story as a visitor of the missionary station. The links to the earlier films are also quite limited – aside from a few sex scenes there is very little eroticism and the focus seems to be on making a dedicated cannibal film. In this respect the script is solid if unimpressive – there is nothing here that would not be done a lot better by many of the later genre entries, but at least the pacing is strong and some tension is built up at the enjoyable climax.
Although D’Amato had really taken Emanuelle around the world in his earlier films, Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals spends most of its runtime in an Italian river, masquerading as the Amazon – the effect is not too bad but it does mean that the stock animal footage looks very poorly integrated (although fortunately it is only used once). The direction of the sex scenes, usually a highlight of the series, is rather uninspired and like the script it feels like D’Amato was much more interested in getting to the gore scenes. At these he does excel with some incredibly vivid effects on display (although the film does avoid the animal violence which was to become a genre staple). Even composer Nico Fidenco changes tack here with a much darker than usual soundtrack which works well to build up tension, although still retaining a cheesy title song.
File size: 1.3 GB
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