Edward Champion serendipitously was exploring similar terrain to yours truly on Friday. In the context of thoughtfully attacking Donkey Punch, a new movie, Champion explores the justifications for ultra-violence in movies. In considering Eli Roth, specifically Hostel 2, Champion writes:
It is cheap, exploitative, incurious about the human condition, and not particularly interested in exploring the relationship between the tortured and the torturer. (Bound and tortured) Matarazzo’s body is presented, but it’s all in the interest of misogyny. And while Roth has another woman cut a client’s dick off near the end of the film, as if to suggest that emasculation represents a kind of female empowerment, the brutal cheekiness (a dog chows down on the cock just after it is thrown across the room) adds nothing particularly substantial to the revolutionary possibilities of the horror genre, much less the talent that Roth displays in other scenes.
Champion vigurously nails the fratboy nihilism present in much of Roth’s work. It is a tad problematic, however, to so effectively pinpoint the morally problematic misogyny pervasive in Hostel 2 while describing the virulently homophobic Hostel as an example of “primitive satirical promise.” Nonetheless, Champion is a helluva writer and his site is worth a frequent read.