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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Nekromantik 2 (CD/DVD)
Nekromantik 2 (CD/DVD)
Barrel Entertainment // Unrated // June 10, 2003
List Price: $29.99 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Don Houston | posted July 26, 2003 | E-mail the Author
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Movie: It's not often that I watch a horror movie since, in my experience at least, they are among the most predictable of movies and why bother with watching something that is geared to an audience of mostly younger fans. looking for a date movie? Well, I stumbled onto a most bizarre horror movie, after hearing it had been banned in several European countries, and, being the big supporter of free speech and independent movie making that I am, I thought it'd be a nice change of pace to review. The movie, Nekromantik 2, was certainly that, a change of pace.

The movie centers on a young gal, Monika (Monika M.) who has a thing for dead bodies. Such a thing that she digs up a body to make out with. Sound gross? It gets worse. She hangs out with a group of females about her age that watch autopsy videos for kicks. Okay, if you think her antics with a rotting body are nasty, that she keeps it around in her small apt is just a kicker. Well, if life seems rosy for Monika, it gets somewhat better when she meets a young man, Mark (Mark Reeder). Mark works as a voice actor for porn movies (okay, the movie's starting to come around with possibilities) and is a bit weird but nothing on the scale of Monika. As their relationship blossoms, Monika needs to choose between Mark or her dead lover (or does she?) and that's the basis for this bizarre little indie horror flick.

Okay, I don't have a deep background in ultra low budget horror movies made in Berlin, Germany. That said, the acting was about par for some of the adult movies I review. If you've never seen one, let's just say that the tongue in cheek humor of adult cinema is missing in German horror films if this film is representative of the genre. The screenplay was about as bad, but not so bad "it's good", since the whole point here was to provide shock value for a very small group of viewers. And while the budget might've been low, there was a lot of shock value to be had here.

So, if the acting and story were weak, but it provides that "extra edge" you've been looking for, what else can you expect? It had a great package of extras, far better than most releases in the horror genre, and the included music CD was actually pretty interesting. If only the subject matter weren't so gruesome and the technical issues so obvious, I think Director Jorg Buttgereit's interesting fascination with morbid matters might be the grounds for a better movie. I haven't seen the first Nekromantik and I can pretty much assure you that that's a remote possibility, a very, very remote possibility, as I didn't see much here worth watching (and I did it twice to see it with and without the audio commentary) but if it was anything like this one, you can safely pass it up. My rating of this one is Skip It!

Picture: The picture was presented in 1.33:1 ratio full frame format color. The dvd advertises the transfer was digitally mastered from the original camera negative, using a high definition film scanner. I'm glad it did because I can only imagine how bad it would've looked otherwise. The movie was full of scratches and other blemishes and there was a number of artifacts too.

Sound: The sound was presented with a choice of either a remastered stereo German track or the original mono track with optional English subtitles. In keeping with it's low budget nature, the sound wasn't very good either but it was a perfect compliment to the picture.

Extras: This is one area where the dvd package shined. It included a full CD Soundtrack for both the original and this sequel. There was an audio commentary, made fairly recently, where the director, Monika and Mark, and the co-author all spoke about their experiences making the movie. Granted, much of what was said wasn't very helpful in terms of theme or technical matters-they had all seemingly forgotten as much about the movie as they remembered, but at least there was a charming German accent to listen to. There was also a feature for the making of Nekromantik 2 that was made closer to the films actual release that showed a number of the special effects being made. A number of outtakes and a long photogallery were also present for horror fans. Add in two short movies, Die Krupps (Rise Up) and Manne The Movie, made by Buttgereist, a set of trailers, and a paper insert with a message from the director, another from a writer of a few books, some pictures and chapter listings for both the movie and the CD, and you have a very sweet package of extras.

Final Thoughts: If I sound like this was the worst movie I've ever watched, you probably got the right idea. That it was so offensive, in terms of content, may appeal to a number of people who'd be willing to overlook it's many picture and audio problems, I can see why Germany and Austria (to name two) banned it and/or tried to jail those associated with it. I only wish the movie had been better thought out and had fewer technical issues. While I may sympathize with those who'd ban this one based on the necrophilia it showed or the bloody violence it portrayed, I'm sure there's a couple of people out there that thought this was swell and if I were Germany, I'd encourage directors to show stuff like this-what better way to remove the mystique of a topic most consider offensive?

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