Blu-ray Review: Primitives (1980)

September 25, 2020

Written by DanXIII

Daniel XIII; the result of an arcane ritual involving a King Diamond album, a box of Count Chocula, and a copy of Swank magazine, is a screenwriter, actor, artist, and reviewer of fright flicks…Who hates ya baby?

A trio of anthropology students; Robert, Rita, and Tommy (thanks for fuckin’ up a good thing Tom) get a wild hair up their collective asses that the primitive tribe their guide has led them to is too well known, and that the best course would be to be to travel further into the Indonesian jungle and really go native!

Of course this goes over like a turd in a punchbowl, and after a rafting accident the gang makes like Journey and (unintentionally) go their separate ways… with Robert and Rita (Team R forevahhh) running afoul of the titular primitive tribe of (alleged) cannibals, and Tommy beating the bush looking high and low for his pals.

Make no mistake; director Sisworo Gautama Putra and screenwriter Imam Tantowi are straight up swiping Italian cannibal fright flick maestro Ruggero Deodato like a mother fucker, but I’ll be damned if they don’t make an entertaining go if it.

After inexplicably starting with a credit sequence set to Kraftwerk’s We are the Robots we are bombarded with outrageous fashions, rubber-tipped spike traps, the licking of various bodily secretions, and my personal fav, the use of martial arts against that titular tribe (and with Indonesian martial arts legend Barry Prima among the cast featured that should come as no surprise)!

Speaking of them, a more hammy group of overacting cannibals (who do very little flesh eating it should be said… they leave most of that to their crocodile buddies) you will never find. While the Italian flicks of this ilk played their cannibals in a more realistic manner, these folks are just completely over-the-top which makes for added entertainment value for sure.

Speaking of entertainment; there is a sequence in this thing that will have you hootin’ and hollerin’ like the Primitives themselves. It involves an axe thrown at one of our heroes that misses its intended target that boomerangs back and kills the cannibal that threw it. A real showstopper there cats n’ creeps believe me!

While surprisingly devoid of nudity for this type of picture, it does have that ol’ hoary chestnut animal violence. While the brunt of the heavy lifting there is done by stock footage of animal on animal violence, there are new sequences of human on animal cruelty present here, so if you are sensitive to that sort of (admittedly odious) content you may want to avert thine eerie eyeballs at times during this putrid picture.

As for bonus features on this Blu-ray release from Severin we get interviews with Producer Gope T. Samtani and Tantowi, as well as the film’s trailer and an alternate title sequence.

Tacky, trashy, and definitely tasty; Primitives will make a fine meal for cannibal connoisseurs!

 

 

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