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February 09, 2015

Nekromantik 2

nekromantik 2.jpg

Jorg Buttgereit - 1991
Cult Epics BD Region A

Just in time for Valentine's Day! Jorg Buttgereit provides a brief introduction to the Blu ray. His German accent is a bit heavy, so at first I think he's describing his film as a "laugh story", but what I am mis-hearing is "love story". Be that as it may, there is plenty of humor to be found here.

Not stated are some of the advantages of having a dead lover. They don't back talk, don't stray, and you always know where they are. On the down side, they often stink, and may be prone to fall apart under too much stress.

Nekromantik 2 b.jpg

Buttgereit follows a female necrophiliac, Monika, who finds the grave of the recently dead Rob, the suicidal character from the original Nekromantik. Monika also finds herself attracted to Mark, a man she meets by chance at a movie theater when he is waiting for a date who doesn't show up on time. Their relationship eventually hits a snag when Monika demands that Mark lie on his back and not move during sex, implying that she would prefer him to "play dead". Mark makes his living dubbing sex films, but finds that the more time spent with Monika, the more he finds her to be too perverse for him.

Buttgereit was smart not to try and top his first film. There are a few gross out scenes, mostly involving Monika with Rob's corpse. The film is also an inquiry into transgressive cinema. When Mark and Monika meet, they are watching a movie, My Dinner with Vera, consisting of a nude man and woman sitting at a table loaded with soft boiled eggs, while the man drones on about birds, and how they descended from dinosaurs. Mark likes the film because it contrasts with the kind of films he works with. Later, Monika and her girlfriends gather to watch a video of the dissection of a seal, while eating pizza. Mark unexpectedly shows up, the girlfriends leave, and Mark asks to watch the video. The graphic depiction of the seal being skinned upsets him, while Monika protests that she would rather watch such a video than close-ups of genitalia in a porno film.

The history of Nekromantik 2 raises the question about limits in depicting transgressive activity. The film was temporarily seized by German police soon after the initial release, supposedly for violence. What some may have found disturbing is that Monika is presented as a sympathetic character, and no judgment is made, no punishment meted out for any misdeeds.

The blu ray comes with loads of extra features, including a commentary track, excerpts from the live music performance accompanying the Twentieth anniversary of the film (with star Monika M. still looking quite attractive), and trailers. A short film shot at the grave of Ed Gein made me wonder why Buttgereit has thus far resisted making a film combining necrophilia with incest, although, honestly, it is a very nice piece of minimalist filmmaking. Very delightful is the music video, "Lemmy, I'm a Feminist", performed by German band Half Girl, featuring the cult figure from Motorhead.

Posted by Peter Nellhaus at February 9, 2015 06:40 AM