Written by: Michael Den Boer on March 1st, 2018
Theatrical Release Date: Spain, 1972
Director: Eloy De La Iglesia
Writers: Eloy De La Iglesia, Anthony Fos
Cast: Vincente Parra, Emma Cohen, Vicky Lagos, Eusebio Poncela, Fernando Sanchez Polack, Charlie Bravo, Rafael Hernandez, Jose Franco, Goyo Lebrero, Ismael Merlo, Valentin Tornos
BluRay Release Date: January 24th, 2018
Approximate running time: 107 Minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 Widescreen / 1080 Progressive / MPEG-4 AVC
Sound: DTS-HD Mono English / Spanish
Subtitles: English for Spanish Language Dialog
BluRay Release: Code Red
Region Encoding: Region Free
Retail Price: $19.99
This film’s title The Cannibal Man, is kind of a misleading title, since there never is any clear indication or proof that the films lead Marcos eats human flesh. There is however one brief scene, which alludes to possible cannibalism in the film. And even this moment doesn’t fully expose Marcos or anyone else for that matter as a cannibal.
The Cannibal Man was co-written and directed by Eloy de la Iglesia, whose other notable films include, Glass Ceiling, The Priest and a “A Clockwork Orange” clone, titled Clockwork Terror. Key collaborators on The Cannibal Man include, screenwriter Anthony Fos (The Vampires Night Orgy, Death Will Have Your Eyes), cinematographer Raúl Artigot (The Erotic Rites of Frankenstein, The Pajama Girl Case) and composer Fernando García Morcillo (Dr. Orloff’s Monster, Django, a Bullet for You).
The narrative is very simple and to the point. Only a handful of locations are used. With the primary one being Marcos’s home, where most of his murders occur. The way the plot evolves and use of mainly one location is reminiscent of Roman Polanski’s Repulsion.
Visually the film at times looks gritty, especially when we are at Marcos’s home. And then there are times, when things just light up, like the scene where Marcos and a neighbor named Néstor, go swimming late one evening. It also happens that this neighbor in a “Rear Window” like way, has been watching Marcos commit and subsequently try to cover his crimes.
The spying neighbor Néstor is also a homosexual and he tries to seduce Marcos. With the scene, where they go swimming together, being a perfectly orchestrated game of foreplay between the two men. Marcos at this point is so far gone psychological and because of this he does not pick up on Néstor’s infatuation with him.
The murders scenes are well executed. With the most extreme moment of bloodletting, being the scene where Marcos murder’s his brother. Ultimately, despite its dark subject matter and un-sympathetic killer The Cannibal Man is a captivating story which only gets better with each new viewing!
The Cannibal Man comes on a 25 GB single layer BluRay. The film is presented in a 1080 progressive widescreen. Though, this release uses this film U.S. theatrical release title The Apartment on the 13th Floor. The version presented for this release is the full length Spanish theatrical version of the film. The title card is in Spanish and all of the inter-titles are in Spanish. This HD transfer is on par with Subkulter’s 2015 German Blu-ray release. And when compared to this film’s previous North American home video releases. This transfer is superior in every way.
This release comes with one audio option, a DTS-HD mono mix in English and the Spanish language scenes comes with English subtitles. The audio is in great shape, dialog always comes through clearly and everything sounds balanced. Range wise, this audio mix does a very good job with the more ambient aspects of the soundtrack.
Extras for this release include trailers for The Cannibal Man, Last Cannibal World (Jungle Holocaust), The Mountain of the Cannibal God and Cut and Run. These trailers cannot be played separately.
Overall The Cannibal Man gets a solid audio / video presentation from Code Red, highly recommended.