THE BUNNY GAME (2012) Review

Directed by: Adam Rehmeier
Starring: Rodleen Getsic, Jeff Renfro

THE BUNNY GAME is one of those movies I actively hunted down solely because of its reputation; it has been described as downright depraved and was refused classification by the BBFC. Other movies in similar circumstances (THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE II for example) have invariably disappointed me because none of them seem to live up to the hype. THE BUNNY GAME however sets itself apart from these films by presenting an extreme sense of realism, from the non-simulated oral sex scene at the beginning to the use of a branding iron and other devices.

THE BUNNY GAME has the simplest of plots (if you can even call it that) which has a prostitute being abducted by a truck driver and then subjected to both physical and psychological abuse in the back of his truck for days on end. That's it. There's nothing close to character development in fact all we really know is that this prostitute is a sad, filthy whore who sucks dick for whatever scraps of cash and drugs she can get her dirty little hands on, and the truck driver is some kind of sadomasochistic nutball with plenty of spare time on his hands.
Despite the little to no story, the minimal dialogue and complete lack of character development, I found myself becoming mesmerized by this film. Being shot in stark black and white was probably the right decision as I can imagine a lot of impact being lost were it filmed in conventional color. The editing is a rollercoaster ride as well with a lot of long shots where basically nothing happens followed by a sudden barrage of rapid, epilepsy-inducing imagery accompanied by some fast and heavy music.

It's obvious that the actors (especially Rodleen Getsic) have put their all into this film, with a lot of full frontal nudity, restrictive locations and physical abuse. Jeff Renfro's portrayal of 'The Hog' brings to life one of the nastiest fuckers I've seen on screen, and Getsic gives a very passionate performance as 'The Bunny'.

With the grayscale visuals and the experimental editing THE BUNNY GAME comes across as almost an arthouse flick and a very gritty one at that, but it is a great way to bring across the disturbed and drug-fuelled content of the film. If there's one main downside to this film it definitely has to be the overuse of long shots where nothing happens and the running time of 76 minutes. I can't help but feel that this would have worked better as a shorter film but as it currently is it just seemed to drag on a bit too long. Another complaint I personally have is that I think I would have enjoyed this more if there had been a slightly more substantial plot or at least some kind of conclusive ending. The ending given almost makes the movie seem pointless as there is no real sense of closure of finality.

For casual horror fans I wouldn't recommend this, you'll probably find it either repellent or boring or just plain stupid. For fans of extreme and experimental cinema or just those looking for something a little different though, you may just find a special place in your heart for this unique film. It may be lacking in the plot department but the performances are great and it definitely pushes the boundaries when it comes to realism.

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