NEKROMANTIK is every parent's worst nightmare. It is the film they have built up in their minds to represent the Horror genre at large. However, genre fans will be surprised to find that the film is just as much a character study into the darkest recesses of the human psyche as it is a repulsive shocker. The action finds a man who is growing increasingly jealous as his wife begins to prefer making love with the festering corpse that he has brought home from work for their necrophilic escapades. After she leaves him for the corpse, he is left to wallow in despair as he spirals deeper in to his own psychosis and even more deplorable acts. Every scene of NEKROMANTIK is intentionally shot to shock and disgust, including unnecessary shots of urination, animal slaughter, and a range of perversions that are often irrelevant to the plot. The visceral gore goes far beyond anything that has been seen in the past, inducing vomit in even the hardened Horror fans through the use of real animal intestines and a sickening finale. The 8mm filming combined with the unnerving score and grotesqueries on screen culminate into a gritty and voyeuristic experience. Buttgereit makes bold statements concerning desensitization through media exposure, but he does so by using even more extreme sensationalism and gore than that which occurs in the films he is commenting against. Despite the purely exploitative plot and lurid themes, NEKROMANTIK is competently acted and directed in order to achieve maximum effect. The fact that it is not poorly made makes the film that much more powerful and dangerous, since it cannot be easily dismissed or disregarded as callow and unsophisticated garbage. This same form of subversive cinema would carry in to Buttgereit's subsequent films, and would also serve as a significant influence on later shockers found in the AUGUST UNDERGROUND series and more recently the equally necrophilic DEADGIRL. While certainly not for all audiences, NEKROMANTIK has a notorious reputation that is well deserved, making it an important (if not distasteful) entry in the genre.
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