I Spit On Your Grave (2010)

Director: Steven R. Monroe (2010)
Starring: Sarah Butler, Jeff Branson, Andrew Howard
Find it: No, really, don't.

So good a story they told it twice. Now with better acting and inappropriately competent direction. But still irredeemably shit and possibly more morally bankrupt than the original. Where Mier Zarchi's 1978 original was, well, original and saw itself as a feminist piece, this remake just looks and feels like an exercise in moneyspinning unoriginality. Zarchi was trying to make a statement about rape (not very well, I should say). This hunk of horseshit is motivated entirely by "you know what'll make us some money? Let's remake I Spit On Your Grave."

If you don't know the plot, I recommend you go away now. It'll leave your mind an infitely better place. I wish I didn't know either version of this movie existed. I resent having the plot of I Spit On Your Grave stuck in my memory. Jennifer Hills (Sarah Butler) is a writer who heads out to an isolated cabin to get some work done. Instead, she runs into a gang of Hillbilly rapists determined to do what they do best. But because Zarchi's brand of 'rape, rinse, repeat' just won't cut it nowadays, we have to have torture too. Physical and psychological and with a baseball bat and a bottle and then a gun. Once all the rape is done with, revenge commences (reluctantly, I might add. Much like the original, Spit '10 is far less interested in Jennifer's revenge than it is her rape). There are 60 minutes of torture/rape and about 40 minutes of revenge. Revenge which is just more torture, really. Day Of The Woman my arse.

There's a scene 10 minutes in where Jennifer is spied upon whilst dressed only in her underwear. But the way it's framed isn't creepy or scary; it's like a scene cut from The Unborn. The camera makes us complicit with the rapists without even realising that it's doing so. It letches gleefully off've Jennifer, unironically and like any other silly horror movie would. But I Spit On Your Grave isn't supposed to be any other silly horror movie. By sleazing on her thusly - and inviting us to do so too - director Steven Monroe is as complicit in her rape as the rapists themselves. For all of its faults (and it has a fucking lot) Spit '78 is a remarkably unsexy movie. This version should have starred Megan Fox or Odette Yustman. It's designed to titillate as much as it is terrify. Which misses the point entirely.

The Hollywood sheen, rather than improving the story, more highlights its faults. With all the money and talent at hand, they chose to make this lump of shit? They chose this as a story which needed telling again? There are jump scares, twists and a creepy horror movie soundtrack. Which miss the point even more. The first forty minutes are all buildup to the rape itself. That's 40 minutes waiting to watch someone get raped and then there are about 15 minutes of the act itself. Day Of The Woman? Fuck off. Never before has that alternate moniker seemed so condescending. "Oh we just spent 50 minutes raping and torturing the girl: but it's okay, she chops his willy off at the end. BTW, she gets naked."

Admittedly, the revenge is better done than before. It'd be satisfying if you didn't just hate the film itself so much. Plus Jennifer talks a lot and her dialogue really isn't very interesting. She wisecracks far too much.

RAPIST: Fuck you.
JENNIFER: I already did that. I didn't like it very much.
[Hold for applause]

JENNIFER shoves shotgun up RAPIST'S arse.
RAPIST: Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaagh
JENNIFER: I thought you were an ass man.

She's a regular comedian and nowhere near as scary as Camille Keaton, who actually seemed pissed off. Sarah Butler is a good actress, but fails to really nail anything other than kooky emo.

It's nihilistic and stupid and horrible and unpleasant (which, I suppose, it's supposed to be) and boring and offensive and literally a punch in the face to every real horror fan out there. Much as it did during the video nasty era, I Spit On Your Grave makes us all look bad in the process. It'll be called sick and depraved and people will want it banned. And fans of horror will get the blame. I expect to be on some sort of register now, simply for having watched it.

I Spit On Your Grave 1978 is a legitimate piece of horror cinema history. I Spit On Your Grave 2010 isn't. It achieves precisely one thing, which I thought no movie ever could: it makes me hate the original flick ever so (very) slightly less.


  1. I didn't hate either film, but the remake surprised me at how well it wrangled so many 70s exploitation elements. At times I felt I was watching some lost relic from that decade, but with a modern polish. The one liners didn't bother me, nor did I think they were funny. I took it that each torture/death mirrored each attackers character traits and her dialog was back-handed responses to certain remarks thrown at her earlier in the film.

    Also, I didn't think the rape scene here was the pornographic endurance test of the original. More time was spent with the humiliation aspect leading up to the rape, imo. And for once, I thought the revenge portion was satisfying on all fronts. While I wouldn't say it was an enjoyable movie, I do think it's a worthy, if pointless remake.

    Some feel the first movie was supposed to show the ugliness of the act of rape. Personally, I think Zarchi was, like so many during that time, trying to make the most deplorable exploitation flick imaginable and that seems to be the case here, too. Both films in my view exist solely to evoke an emotional response in viewers and it seems to have done just that with you, Joel.

    Is the original and remake available uncut in your neck of the woods?

  2. Thanks for the comment. The original, as far as I know, isn't available in its entirety over here. Sexual violence stands no chance of getting a proper release on the BBFC. I managed to get my hands on an uncut copy awhile back though (thank you Internets).

    I'd say my response, whilst emotional, is more directed at the cynicism of the remake (it just seems to be pointless) and the shoddiness of the original. I find neither particularly well-made and both kinda boring. I'm not against the story per-se, but I'd rather they do it either well or not at all. In this case, the latter.

  3. your "review" of "I Spit on Your Grave" 2010 sucks. So do you. You think it's shit? Go screw yourself. Also, why would anyone want to "steal" something from this worthless waste of webspace anyway? What a joke. You are shit.

    1. STFU asshole, it WAS shit. Fuck off.

  4. Thank you kindly for your thoughtful and well-worded comment, Anyonymous. Did you write/direct this movie yourself? You seem quite put out by my negative "review" of it.

    Congrats, by the by; you're now one of the blurbs.

  5. Haha seems like the aforementioned Anonymous had an emotional investment in this film. "You suck! If you don't like this movie screw you!" Now that friends and neighbors is a poster-child for open-mindedness and rational argument. I didn't care for either film all that much personally. I'm sick of shock-factor, fuck-fests, and gore scenes. I find myself wondering if there will ever be a truly scary movie or has wading through all of this barely passable filth desensitized me to the point where none shall succeed.

  6. Hey Anonymos!!!!! kiss my ass!!!!lol

  7. I personally liked this movie and really hated the original. I've only seen both once many years apart and I never got around to the revenge scenes in the first film before the movie messed up. I never bothered to go back. It felt like the whole movie was a ridiculous 70s rape porno. Where as (from what I remember) it seemed this movie had a better approach to it. Only thing I really hated was them telling her to neigh and stuff like that. It was just extremely distracting and took away from the creepiness.

    I explain my feelings on both films in my review of the remake here: http://www.shiversofhorror.com/blog/2011/03/29/i-spit-on-your-grave-2010-hd/

    Oh, and I found it neat that that the guy who play’s Andy, is the actor who played Joey in A Nightmare on Elm Street 3 & 4.

  8. Sorry, but how is a movie that exploits rape(referring to both versions here) supposed to be a good film? Have people really gotten that f'd in the head, where they'll decry the first film, yet-at the same time-say the remake is good? What the hell is wrong with people?