Caniba (2017)

Caniba (2017) MOVIE DETAILS
Name: Caniba
• Year: 2017
Country: France
Director: Lucien Castaing-Taylor, Verena Paravel
Main cast: Issei Sagawa, Jun Sagawa
Runtime: 90 minutes
Production company: Norte Productions
TRAILER (Not available)


When Paravel and Castaing-Taylor, the two directors of Caniba, come to the stage to present their last work, accompanied by Àngel Sala, director of the Sitges Film Festival, they explained to us the hazardous origins of this film work. They were in Japan to film a documentary about the Fukushima’s disaster, but during the trip, they met a porn director, and after that encounter, they decided to completely change the subject of their stay, and shoot about Issei Sagawa instead.

Not to blame them, the story sounds creepy enough to become a subject of interest. That Japanese man, who does now live freely but secluded to his country of origin, was once the murderer of a university colleague, back in 1981 when he was studying in la Sorbonne, Paris. With an uncontrollable cannibal instinct, gathered by an unsolved sexual attraction, he killed her and ate some of her body parts, and was later caught and declared insane, therefore sent back to his natal Japan, from where he can not leave.

First of all, let’s not forget this is a real story: the events took place, and the main subject of this documentary is a cannibal. But what maybe created a bigger impact on me is the fact that he actually lives in the suburbs of Tokyo, and has to earn his living by selling his character, either for documentary purposes, or porn, or whatsoever. It couldn’t be more sordid. Through the eyes of the camera (as looking through a peeping hole) we’re able to see that consumed man, condemned to live with his ghosts and his brother, subject of different but also deranged behaviors. For those who seek answers or explanations, this documentary doesn’t solve your concerns. It does not seek either to justify in any measure the acts committed by Sagawa in the past. It simply shows in a strong cinematographic way the life of that man, who’s a human like us, living on the same planet like us. In solitude, and forgotten by God.

Winner of the Special Jury Prize in the Horizon Awards at the Venice Film Festival 2017, this documentary was the most shocking film I saw at the Sitges Film Festival of Fantasy and Horror Films this year. Sometimes reality overcomes fiction.

RATE: 6/10