I Spit On Your Grave was one of the most shocking titles of the VHS horror era, so the fact the remake is generating controversy before it has even been released should be no surprise.
Early screenings at film festivals came flooded with reports of how graphic and frightening the film is, leading to the surprising decision to release the film unrated in U.S. theatres. (In Canada, the same version of the film is rated R).
It’s rare for a film to hit U.S. screens without a rating these days, but for the grisly I Spit On Your Grave — in theatres next week — it was really the only option. Like the original, the film deliberately pushes buttons and boundaries. “I think that if we don’t push the envelope as filmmakers, we might as well just pack it in and direct romantic comedies all of the time,” said Monroe.
“This is what art forms are for, to force people to think, to question, to feel things, or see and understand things that they otherwise wouldn’t.”
“I first saw (the original) in 1980. It had a two-day run in theatres in 1978 and then it went away and came out on VHS in 1980. I saw it then and it stuck with me for a couple of days. I definitely had an on and off funk for a few days. It kept popping into my brain and pushing my buttons.”
Even making such a film was difficult to endure, especially for lead actress Sarah Butler. However Butler is quick to admit that the overall experience was worth it.
“There were days where I couldn’t break out of the character because I was so terrified that I had to keep crying for about 10 minutes before we could do another take,” recalled the actress.
“But that’s the kind of thing that actors dream of, so it was an honour to play the role.”