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    I Spit on Your Grave 3: Vengeance is Mine (2015) - Movie Review

    "A hateful and empty killing spree of a female vigilante.” 

    I Spit on Your Grave is perhaps one of the most notorious slasher film franchises. It is shamelessly brutal as abused women strikes back by torturing their tormenters with various acts of persecution like feeding them to the rats and exceptionally mutilating their genitals. From Meir Zarchi’s 1978 original movie, it was rebooted in 2010 by Steven R. Monroe. The next sequel followed in 2013 by the same director. 2015 does not end without seeing the latest instalment in the series. R.D. Braunstein’s I Spit on Your Grave 3: Vengeance is Mine has no connection to the 2013 film; instead, it goes back and follows the events after the 2010 remake.

    Sarah Butler reprises her role as Jennifer Hills. After cold-bloodedly murdering her rapists, Jennifer changes cities and goes with a new name – Angela. She constantly sees a psychiatrist (Harley Jane Kozak) and attends a support group for rape victims in hopes of easing her anger and emotional burdens. There, she meets a father (Doug McKeon) who grieves for her daughter who dies from the same violence and another juvenile who is consistently forced by her step-father. But Angela is more intrigued with Marla (Jennifer Landon), a strong-willed victim who channels her rage into vigilant acts. Together, they spend the nights drinking and assaulting drunken men.

    But Angela snaps again when Marla is found dead, presumably killed by her ex-boyfriend. With her anger rising up again, she launches another vengeful war against the opposite gender and kills repugnant males she recognizes. It is not an easy battle though as a no-nonsense cop (Gabriel Hogan) and his superior (Michelle Hurd) are also hot on her tails. 

    I Spit on Your Grave 3: Vengeance is Mine is a surprising departure from the formula that worked for the first two films. Nevertheless, it remains interestingly twisted, cringe-worthy and intensely sadistic. Instead of focusing more on the physical brutality, it gives a closer examination on the psychological and emotional toll of the experience on the rape victims. It is never boring as dramatic self-reflective moments are interspersed with physical violence. As expected, kills are always appalling and haunting. Notable sequences are when Angela hammered a pipe into a man’s ass and when she suckled a male’s lollipop only to chop off its head and split the shaft into two blood-spewing halves.

    However, the film is a hateful thing in its core. Its hatred is boundless and aimless. Angela or Jennifer already has her revenge on the first film (that’s enough!) but her motivation in this sequel is just too dense and absurd that her killing spree is not justifiable or enjoyable. She elicits sympathy before but she draws nothing now except pity and annoyance. There is no more sense of relief in her revenge and her heinous acts feel empty. They are not anymore female heroics; they are simply excuses to unleash her wrath and spread violence.

    Butler is once again devoted to her character. She is engrossing and exciting but the material, supporting cast and general direction fail to make a satisfying whole. Overall, I Spit on Your Grave 3: Vengeance is Mine is an empty montage of violence by an angry female. 

    Production company: Cinetel Films
    Cast: Sarah Butler, Jennifer Landon, Gabriel Hogan, Harley Jane Kozak, Michelle Hurd, Russell Charles Pitts, Walter Perez 
    Director: R.D. Braunstein
    Screenwriter: Daniel Gilboy 
    Producers: Adam Driscoll, Neil Elman, Anthony Frankhauser, Lisa M. Hansen, Paul Hertzberg, Kevin Kasha, Gary Needle, Richard Schenkman, Meir Zarchi
    Directors of photography: Richard J. Vialet 
    Production designer: Gladys Rodriguez
    Costume designer: Anninka Velie 
    Editor: Ana Florit
    Music: Edwin Wendler


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