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on 30 October 2004
Wow, my first encounter with Laura Gemser! What a radiant presence she is on-screen. Hubba hubba hubba!! Oh yeah, the movie: if your tastes run to the 'schlocky horror' or the 'good bad-movie' then this one might interest you. I presume this version is censored somewhat as there is not much to offend in its content. Even so, there is still some gore and mutilation, not to mention Gemser carrying on splendidly in the buff (as one does when one is beautiful and in the Amazon).
The story starts out in New York where our reporter Emanuelle is investigating a mental hospital. There she comes across a feral girl found in the Amazon. Feral girl taks a bite out of one of the nurses- cue a trip to brazil to find out more about the tribe of cannibals. Madcap adventures ensue- including snake attack (very Freudian), inter-racial dating, a nun, communal bathing, fertility rites and disembowlment.
The acting is not too bad, in a 70s laid back kind of way, and the plot moves along at a tolerable pace. The soundtrack is quite good, again in a very 70s kind of way. The real attraction of this film is the mesmerising beauty of Laura Gemser, along with the fact that, maybe for the only time in your life, you will get to see a monkey smoking. Presumably he couldn't read the health warning on the pack.
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on 2 February 2016
Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals, Joe D'Amato's 1977 fusion of soft-core bump and grind and Italian style gore makes it's Blu ray debut here from UK indie label 88 Films. Presented completely uncut and uncensored 88 Films also provide the option to view the film in either it's Italian language or the trashy English dub as well as offering a reversible cover sleeve and postcard reproduction artwork.

Synopsis:
When she isn't infiltrating a corrupt slave trade, watching live snuff movies or meeting a horse called Pedro intrepid globe trotting journalist Emanuelle (Laura Gemser) is persuaded by her editor into leading an expedition deep into Amazonia to search for and research a supposedly extint tribe of cannibals after finding a delirious young women in a mental institution sporting a tattoo worn by the elusive jungle people. Seeking advise from an expert in anthropology Professor Mark Lester (Black Emanuelle regular Gabriele Tinti) the two make their way into the jungle where they meet up with Wilkes (English actor Geoffrey Copleston) an old friend of Professor Lester's and an expert on the local tribes. Wilkes' promiscuous daughter Isabelle (Mónica Zanchi of Hitch-Hike) and nun Sister Angela (Annamaria Climenti) have a planned trip up river to a nearby mission to deliver supplies so Emanuelle and Professor Lester join them for part of the journey. En route they meet up with shifty hunter Donald McKenzie (Donald O'Brien of Zombie Holocaust and Run Man Run), his nympho wife Maggie (Nieves Navarro of The Big Gundown) and their muscle bound guide Salvador (Percy Hogan) who informs them that the mission has been attacked by savages and all the missionaries have perished. With nighttime looming the weary travelers decide to make camp but when morning comes they find that one of their expedition crewmen has been brutally murdered and their boat has gone. Seeing no other option the eclectic bunch of adventurers attempt to make their way through the dense jungle but of course their journey was always going to be blighted as they are gradually caught and picked off by the cannibals of the title.
Nothing at all to do with Just Jaeckin's classy French exports of the early 70s, Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals is part of the sleezy black Emanuelle films starring sultry Indonesian born actress Laura Gemser. Directed by the overly prolific Joe D'Amato who the year previously had peaked in terms of grotesqueness with the bizarre mixture of hardcore porn and snuff movie violence that was Emanuelle in America. Strangely this feels ever so slightly subdued despite it's rather exotic sounding title, promiscuous nature of the cast and tropical adventure storyline. Sure there is plenty of erotic interludes and in the final act some yucky crowd pleasing gore but this still feels relatively tame (in terms of visceralness at any rate) compared to other entries in both the Black Emanuelle series and the Italian cannibal genre although this did pre-date both Lenzi's infamous Cannibal Ferox and Deodato's groundbreaking Cannibal Holocaust. As with a handful of other Joe D'Amato pictures of a similar disreputable nature I often find it hard to understand who these movies were aimed at with the uneasy blend of eroticism and violence and although this particular film never ventures into all out hardcore territory what is on offer here is stronger (and more prolonged)than what you would encounter in a straight horror film despite the sex and violence being pretty much evenly split. The movie also has an inherent cheapness to the production most noticeable in the New York City first act with the crew seemingly wanting to shoot as quickly as they could (I very much doubt they had a permit to do this) with an almost rushed and decidedly awkward feel to the proceedings and some of the special effects in the latter stages are far less effective than other Euro schlock offerings (the demise of Donald O'Brien looks especially odd) although thankfully this particular title doesent rub the viewers noses in staged animal death scenes that were common place in Italian cannibal pictures. The film also feels a little slow and ponderous once the narrative moves to Amazonia with far too much time spent watching the cast trudge through the jungle or argue around campfires although these scenes are often punctuated by a handful of sequences that will make you question what D'Amato was thinking when he cut this concoction together (the Marlboro smoking Chimpanzee immediately springs to mind). That said Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals still has alot to offer from the surprisingly decent, occasionally haunting and often sensuous score by Nico Fidenco which works wonderfully within the context of the movie through to the cast who are far better than a film like this deserves. Fans of Euro schlock will definatly enjoy what D'Amato dishes up here and despite the two genres never really meshing together they don't conflict enough to completely derail the film meaning that this remains an interesting if ever so slightly predictable entry in the Italian exploitation sweepstakes which I am happy to finally see uncut in the UK.

Picture:
Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals makes it's Blu ray debut with an extremely problematic and uneven AVC encoded 1080p transfer that could be the worst to date in the 88 Films Italian Collection range. Presented in widescreen and framed at around 1.85:1 this looks as if it was taken from a dated transfer with a decidedly flat and murky image that gets worse as the movie progresses. The opening could lead to a false sense of security as the sweeping ariel views of The Big Apple look relatively bright and clear and the interiors of the mental institution and press office appear somewhat solid despite a lack of fine object detail and noticeable textures. As to be expected the New York City segments are soft with occasional focusing problems (not to mention a lack of artistry) but this would have been inherent in the original and noticeably haphazard photography and I very much doubt these would ever come across as visually pleasing. The real problems with this transfer are raised once the action shifts to the jungle and the image takes on an unattractive and opressively dark feel not helped by some atrocious day-for night shots that barely look HD. Blacks are poor with extremely noticable crush resulting in a complete lack of shadow detail plus depth and dimensionality are sadly absent. The colour palette is mostly muted and uninspired (even for the jungle greens or blood reds) with a brownish yellow tint and skin tones are a little dark. Print damage is fairly light despite the rough overall appearance with a few scratches, dirt marks and stability issues and grain is visible to a certain extent but can look slightly thick and noisy. This is however better than my old Shriek Show DVD which could be attributed to the better compression job on the Blu ray and it doesent look as if any digital tampering has taken place in the form of artificial sharpening or de-noising but this is still far from a good transfer.

Audio:
88 Films provide two audio options in the form of both English and Italian dubs presented in uncompressed two channel 16bit LPCM at 1536kbps. I selected the English dub for my viewing experience occasionally switching between tracks just for comparison reasons. In both mixes dialogue is mostly clear and understandable but as to be expected possesses that detached canned trait often associated with European movies not to mention the requisite syncing problems. Foley effects are flat and uninvolving and environmental acoustics are never overly convincing either lacking in both depth and dynamic rage. Fidenco's wonderful soundtrack does sound decent enough despite a handful of wobbly moments and on the whole is the best thing about this mix.

Extras:
Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals arrives on Blu ray from 88 Films extremely light in the extras department. As with a handful of other titles in the Italian Collection this provides the alternative Italian opening and closing credits again presented in 1080p with LPCM 2.0 audio. Also included is a rather grim looking theatrical trailer for the movie presented in 1080i and an 18 minute trailer reel for other titles released through 88 Films. Again the cover art is reversible and a post card reproduction of the theatrical artwork is included in the case although like a handful of other titles in the collection this is nothing more than a slip of paper.

Conclusion:
Joe D'Amato's movie may not have the outrageous gore of Cannibal Ferox or the social commentary of Cannibal Holocaust but does work as a kitschy 70s exploitation picture with an alluring soundtrack and pretty lead. True these schlocky European movies are an aquired taste and some will think this is utter garbage but fans of D'Amato's collaborations with Laura Gemser or spaghetti horror in general will definalty want to get this. For it's Blu ray debut this release is abit of a let down with poor AV qualities and a distinct lack of extras but I like the movie enough to overlook this and I'm more than happy to add this to my collection.
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on 5 February 2014
This is one of Italian director Joe D'Amato's best movies. A wonderful combination of sleaze & Cannibals. It stars the wonderful Laura Gemser as Emanuelle. Check out IMDB for more. This Danish, Another World dvd is without question the edition to buy. Picture quality is excellent. I already own the US Severn dvd but its nowhere near as good. If you have any interest in Italian exploitation, sex/horror movies then this is a must buy.
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on 23 March 2013
Avoid this one - i have seen a lot of the 70's italian cannibal movies and this is abosolutely the worst one ive seen. Its boring - long segments of soft, soft sex scenes and of a bunch of middle class idiots trekking through the jungle and when the gore happens its not that great either. Avoid this even if youre a fan of these movies as there is basically nothing much to recommend it.
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on 20 February 2016
One star for the transfer. This blu-ray barely HD. Looks like an upscale.
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on 28 February 2016
Not great and not enough cheese for a good review. Dubbing not as bad as others and not much gore. I also seem to remember a little hardcore in the version I saw previously which is obviously missing from this version. Nice to see this released though and hopefully more of the same in the future.
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on 15 May 2015
This is not a good film. Probably the worst Italian 'cannibal' film due to the non-existent cannibal action and atrocious 'special' effects . It probably has more appeal to fans of the softcore Emanuelle films starring Laura Gemser due to the copious amount os simulated 'love' scenes, but even those would be disappointed I think. It does also have Nieves Navarro which is a plus. But overall approach with caution.
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on 28 March 2016
A bit grainy in places one ive not seen before silly and funny at times some soft core sex not a bad film for its age !
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on 6 May 2013
Not as good as when I saw it in the movies twenty years ago when I was younger but things are never the same
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on 27 July 2016
Thank you
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