Movie Review: Pig (2010)

I felt like hanging myself after seeing this one!!

You can imagine my excitement as I finally sat down to watch PIG, the film that Rue Morgue Magazine called (and I’m paraphrasing) the best gore film of 2010.  You can also imagine my disappointment after watching it and wondering if I saw the same film that so many websites are praising and gushing over.

I’m confused people; I really am.  What the fuck is the big dead with this film?  Here’s a quote from Dread Central’s review:

PIG is really tough to sit through. Every time you think that it can’t possibly go any further down the road of depravity, it does, almost as if Mason and company are simply daring you to keep watching. It’s nearly impossible for even the most jaded of viewers to not become just a little bit squeamish here and there.

A good opening is quickly pissed away ... avoid PIG!!

Really?  Are they serious?  I found nothing in this film difficult to watch and there was absolutely nothing in it that made me squeamish.  But they did get one thing right; it was very tough to sit through (just not in a good way).  Let me back up a moment and properly introduce PIG.  PIG is directed by Adam Mason and written by Mason and Andrew Howard.  PIG was written and shot during an “in between” period as Mason was waiting to make the feature LUSTER (which stars Andrew Howard).  Mason made this one completely free of any involvement from any big studios; it was basically a film he made to pass the time while waiting to get the greenlight to do the project he really wanted to do.

I did the same thing after I watched this stinker ... I tried to wash it away!!

The story is a simple one:  We follow around some crazy bastard (played by Andrew Howard), we never get a character name, as he teases, torments, and tortures a few people outside his camper in some rural, isolated location.  That’s it … end of plot summary.  There’s some implied cannibalism, rape, necrophilia, and general torture.  I say “implied” because most of the violence is done right off screen where you can see Howard’s character doing something, but can’t see the details … and do I need to mention that this really pissed me off!!?!  The AUGUST UNDERGROUND trilogy had the balls to show absolutely everything on screen from the perspective of a very unflinching camera.  Here the camera doesn’t ever get a chance to flinch because it never really opens it’s eyes.

Writer-director Adam Mason ... I still love him but PIG sucks!!

What I did appreciate about PIG is that out of it’s 90 minute run time about 70-75 minutes of it was one long take without any edits.  Yes this is very gimmicky, but it’s also probably the reason why this one fell flat on it’s face.  Everything seemed ad-libbed by the actors and actresses on screen, so the amount of depravity we get is limited by the imaginations of the cast involved.  I know that I’m an especially desensitized guy, but there just wasn’t anything here to disturb or sicken anyone.  Films like the above-mentioned AUGUST UNDERGROUND trilogy have helped in my desensitization, but I’m telling you that no matter what Rue Morgue Magazine and Dread Central tell you, PIG is not the most disturbing or gory film you’ll ever see.  I’m still questioning if we all saw the same flick!!

So what exactly is wrong with PIG?  The biggest problem here is that PIG is boring.  Yes; boring.  That first seemingly endless single shot goes on forever and we get to watch every little thing each character does.  I mean EVERY LITTLE THING in minute detail!!  I’ve seen people’s home videos that were more engaging than watching Howard’s character walk around and torture his victims.  I was reaching for the fast forward button on many occasions just to try and find the exact spot where the movie actually becomes hardcore.  It never happened.  Add to this a (failed) attempt at a kinda “twist” ending that completely falls flat on it’s face and you have yourself one gigantic suck-fest.

You'll need cold water to keep yourself awake for this one!!

You might remember my review of the 2006 film BROKEN that Adam Mason directed with Simon Boyes (see my review here).  I absolutely love BROKEN and thought that was one of the most effective films that helped to define and elevate the torture-porn sub-genre.  It was a dark, nihilistic film that didn’t give the viewer even one small glimmer of hope as the main character, appropriately named Hope, tries to survive the tortures of a maniac in order to find out what he did with her daughter.  I loved everything about BROKEN.  That’s why when I heard Mason directed PIG, and along with all the praise it got, I was so excited.  Now I know better.  I’m still a huge fan of Adam Mason’s and will see anything he puts out.  But PIG is an experiment in boredom (he pretty much made it when he was bored AND bores the audience) that I, and you, can do without.  Definitely skip this one.

My Summary:

Director:  Adam Mason

Plot:  0 out of 5 stars

Gore:  2 out of 10 skulls

Zombie Mayhem:  0 out of 5 brains

Reviewed by Scott Shoyer

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Comments
12 Responses to “Movie Review: Pig (2010)”
  1. Adam says:

    You know sometimes for some reason a “bad” film will get a positive review and then that could snowball to so many more. Maybe the reviewers think “hey this guy ( reviewer) loved it and respect him so the film must be great! So I’m going to write an ever more positive review so I can feel one with the community.” Thank Scott for standing up and calling this film out.

  2. Keri says:

    I can respect your review, and I can see why you might not like the film, as it does divide people – but I can’t help but disagree with you here, Scott. I didn’t feel that I needed to see every element of the torture; in fact I’d prefer not to these days, as a lot of films out there overplay their gory sequences in lieu of having anything else to say. Andrew Howard is such a menacing and able actor that I still felt on edge, and still felt affected by what he was doing, on or off-camera (of course, knowing how and when the film was made, complex and costly SFX would have been impossible anyway). I liked the way the camera approached and then ducked away from Howard’s actions – it felt to me like the camera was reacting to events like an audience member, not just impartially viewing everything (again, this could have been a necessity due to the constraints of the film itself, but I didn’t feel it harmed things).

    I agree that the film lulled, but considering the one-take style I think this was inevitable. It’s not Mason’s best work (and I totally agree with you on Broken) but I think it’s an interesting experiment nonetheless, with genuine nastiness and some real technical flair.

    Anyway, I look forward to Luster!

    • Hey Keri. I knew people would confuse what I was talking about in my review of PIG. I didn’t hate the movie because it didn’t have any gore in it; I hated it because 1) it was so goddamn boring I kept getting up and pacing my family room, and 2) because many MANY outlets called PIG the goriest film on 2010. So when I read 5-7 reviews saying this, then hell yeah I’m expecting a gory flick. And if it doesn’t deliver then I’m gonna be pissed. I don’t always need gore to really love a film (BLACK SWAN & RARE EXPORTS are 2 examples) but when I’m promised “the goriest film” then it better deliver.

      I also really didn’t see this film as having anything to say. Howard was ok as the killer, but his performance, in my opinion, was a dime a dozen. For me he didn’t convey anything more or less than other cinematic killers. And like I say above and in the review, the biggest problem is that the entire film is so boring. I understand Mason was doing it in one take (at least most of the film), but ya can’t sacrifice a film’s pacing and tone for a gimmick. It just didn’t work for me.

      Trust me Keri, I know I’m almost alone in my views of PIG, but I need to call them as I see them. But its nice we agree on 2 things: BROKEN kicks ass and we’re both looking forward to LUSTER.

  3. Marc says:

    Not to be the douchebag that comments only when I have a correction, but I’m pretty sure that Rue Morgue called “Blood Pigs” as directed by Brian Paulin, of Morbid Vision Films – the goriest film of 2010, at least according to their Jan/Feb 2011 print edition. Here’s the link to Morbid, where you can watch the trailer: http://www.morbidvisionfilms.com/

    That said – it’s still good to see folks calling ‘em like they see them and not caving to the positive reviews around them. I’ve often wondered that myself when watching some films – I can’t understand what it is that people are seeing about a certain film that is so great. Then again, with my taste in film I’m sure folks have wondered the same for me.

    Marc

    • You’re not being a douchebag at all Marc!! I’m not perfect and I make mistakes on occasion (rarely … LOL). It mustn’t have been Rue Morgue that said that but some other horror outlet (it was probably one of the many online horror websites). But whatever the site is that said that i know they listed PIG as the goriest flick of 2010. I also realize that I’m more desensitized than the vast majority of people, but even with that being said, PIG was just plain old BORING!!

      What are your tastes in films Marc?

  4. exinco says:

    is the bastard has a family?
    at the end of the film, he call sound like his family

  5. Stan says:

    Has anybody come across the subtitles for this movie? Any language will do, english or french preferred. There are gore-flick fans who are hard of hearing, you know, and what the retarded girl was mumbling-blabbing-murmuring not everyone with good ear for accents can tell. Really need help with subs, guys.

    • No subtitles as far as I know, Stan. But it sounds like you watched this one already. No? If you did then you know that any gore fans will be bored tearless with this one. I hated it.

  6. Botas says:

    Where i can see it? I can’t find this fucking movie online :(

    • Consider yourself lucky!! PIG, simply put, is complete shit. It has a boring, slow pace, there is barely any gore in it, and its just a quickly made shitfest trying to cash in on the torture-porn sub-genre. You’re not missing anything. If you’ve read other reviews about it being great, they are full of shit!! Seriously.

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  • Some of my favorite horror movies:
  • Dawn of the Dead (1978)

  • Evil Dead 2: Dead By Dawn (1987)

  • Martyrs (2008)

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