I never watched this film when it first came out, largely due to the fact it was banned in the UK at the time.
Well more than two decades later it is now available, the film certification board reflecting the change in the morals of the country in the intervening years. And all I can say is having watched it in the era of Saw and other torture-porn films, plus movies with explicit sexual content like Baise-Moi and 9 Songs, is that it is extremely tame in comparison to newer films.
In fact I could imagine a film with similar story / content made today might only get a 15 Certificate, never mind be banned.
For anyone who's not seen it here's a quick summary of the plot.
A young female author leaves New York and heads out into the sticks to get some peace and quiet so she can work on her next novel. Only problem is she's landed in small town USA and you know in a horror film that's not going to end well. Four local redneck types decide to have a little fun with her which to them means gang rape her and leave her for dead. She survives and sets out to get her revenge on the four.
It's not the most inspired of plotlines. Pretty much everything in it is telegraphed well in advance. The acting is definitely second rate and when you view it in 2009 with all the advances in effects technology since this was made it is pretty awful.
But it does have something. I'm not quite sure what but there's definitely something there. Maybe it's the daring of the simple concept, I don't know. But I do have to say it hasn't got enough for it to have been remembered this long after being made were it not for the fact it was banned.
Guess the campaigners for banning video nasties being banned missed the mark a little - all they've done in hindsight is to make memorable a film which really doesn't deserve to be memorable.