Torture porn

Up Close and Personal with Stephen Biro

Up Close and Personal with Stephen Biro

In the world of horror there are many sub-genres ranging from the creature feature to the slasher. The hottest new trend on the rise caters to those who lust for gore and the extreme. The rise of extreme horror movies increases everyday with some attributes seeking to push the boundaries of sanity. House of Tortured Souls has the good fortune to sit down and chat with the man who has taken extreme horror by the reigns and made it his bitch, Mr. Stephen Biro! Join Candace Stone and John Roisland as we get the skinny from the godfather of extreme horror

  • 1. HoTS: First, thank you so much for taking the time to talk with us, we’re all huge fans of yours and Unearthed films. We know you’re a busy guy and appreciate you taking the time to answer our questions. This past weekend was your birthday or “The day of the Biro” an event fans were really excited to partake in. How did you spend your special day?
  • Biro: Well… I actually checked a menu design for a future film, packaged orders and worked. Didn’t go out, no parties or cake. Now… I think the only thing I really missed was NOT getting a birthday blowjob. I miss those, but alas… being single does that.
  • 2. HoTS: The American Guinea Pig series is a huge success and fans are thirsty for more, is there a possibility of an Alien themed installment? It would be difficult to make a good alien on a budget, but it would be a damn shame to miss an opportunity to make a film with an extreme alien anal probing scene (that we can only hope it will have).
  • Biro: Were in talks… with a director/fx man you all know and love. The trick would be the alien design. We couldn’t half ass it… but we’re trying to figure some things out. Also figuring a Frankenstein sort of laboratory sort of thing I was pitched recently as well. It all takes time. Can’t tell you who would be involved as well cause it is another director/fx person we all know and love. Lot of love for our fx people cause if we’re going to try to outdo or match Bouquet of Guts and Gore and the rest in AGP… that’s some serious special effects.
  • 3. HoTS:  Extreme gore films are becoming more and more popular, each director is going to try and out extreme the competition but where do you personally draw the line when it comes to gore?
  • Biro: Me personally? My films, I don’t want rape, pee, poo, semen, ejaculate, vomit or really sexuel violence. I mean, I could do a massive sexuel violence film. I’ve always wanted to do the orgy scene from a little ole comic book called Faust. The satanic orgy scene in issue 10 would be outrageous… would need porn actresses and actors in it to pull it off. But that’s in the stuff I want to make. Now when other filmmakers do it…. they can go wherever they want, unless it like glorifies rape. I won’t touch that stuff. It all depends really. We have released our share of films I would never make. But then again, I have turned down films with a lot of poo. LOL
  • 4. HoTS: You’ve mentioned your Christian faith before, how does it affect the movies you choose to release? Does it prevent you from taking on certain types of films or are there certain types you just won’t touch?
  • Biro: Not much at all… I’m forgiven of my sins.  I won’t do real death videos because they are out there by the dozens. Profiting off of the misery of others is evil. I don’t even like the true crime stuff cause someone is making money off the death of innocents. We did release Cannibal but that was someone who volunteered to be eaten. Texas Chainsaw is loosely based on Ed Gein but it wasn’t using his name to sell it. I’ve seen plenty of movies based on serial killers… but I think it’s a hack sort of thing to be honest. Make money off the deaths of others… not my style. Now, back before I found my faith I did sell real death videos… so I am guilty on that account. I can understand when you’re young, interested in death and want to watch it, study it and know what death can be like cause we are ALL going to die but… not my style anymore.
  • 5. HoTS: Do you get negative feedback from others in the Christian church? How do you handle that?
  • Biro: I haven’t been to church in a long time… I’ve tried some churches, went to one were they were speaking in tongues and that just pissed me off actually. Went to a Catholic church once and listened to the priest bitch for 20 minutes at the congregation for not giving them 10% of their money so they can make this mega church even bigger, so that pissed me off as well. As you can tell, some churches piss me off. They’re usually corrupted in some sort of way. I’d like to find a cool church… I’ve read the Holy Bible 3 and a half times… should probably read it a bit more but I have a hard time finding a KJV that is actually a real KJV version. So many are not, sort of crazy. I had one, gave it to my Mom and she gave it to someone else. hopefully, it found a good home
  • .6. HoTS: Can we expect to see more out of print Chinese films in the future? What’s the biggest challenge in releasing them?
  • Biro: We hope so… hardest part is getting your hands on a print of any film. They didn’t bother to store them correctly so a lot of mold and they usually just threw them out after the theatrical run in China, and everyone is about the 2k or 4k scans.
  • 7. HoTS: You’re also an accomplished author having written several books; do you have any plans to write more? Check out Hellucination: A Memoir here
  • Biro: If I ever get the time. Moving into producing films takes a lot of time as well as Unearthed Films swallowing up a lot of time. I do enjoy screenwriting, not as heavy as writing a novel so that’s what I have been doing lately.
  • 8. HoTS: Every director will face their share of negative feedback, you have been praised for how well you handle it. You share all reviews good and bad which is commendable, but how does it affect you personally?
  • Biro: Sometimes, it’s like… you stupid mother fucker. I enjoy them though. Some people just can’t wrap their mind around making an indie film and they all think a film should be so polished and expensive, it shines so bright but sometimes, you can only polish a turd so much and it still stinks. But then again, everyone’s a critic these days. Some people know what we do, others don’t and if someone shits all over us… they usually didn’t buy the film. The worst reviews are usually people who stole the film. IMDB is full of them. IF you go out of your way to buy an Unearthed Film… you know what you’re in store for and you’re going to enjoy it.
  • 9. HoTS: A lot of young hopefuls come to you looking for advice and you tell them not to get into film, why is that? Was it a difficult road for you?
  • Biro: Mmmm, because it is a total shitty business. I’m going to sound like a total dick here BUT… it’s better to know what you’re getting into than going in all bright eyed and bushy tailed just to get eaten alive. People rip you off, all the time. People lose their ass all the time. Look at it this way. 95% of all films lose their ass, can’t even make their budgets back and I am talking ALL films worldwide. Even the studios lose their asses.. Now… lets just say, you went to film school. Spent 70 grand in tuition and now, know how to make a film. Say you pull it off. You made a real good film. Now what? Now you got to step into the film festival trap. 40 bucks, 60 bucks and even up to 100 bucks just to submit and hope they pick it up. You and about 200 other filmmakers, or 300, 400… 1000 others. Did you know there is over 8500 film festivals in the world right now? Did you market the film? Did you know what you were doing? Marketing and promotion is another side of the battle. What? You made a free Facebook page… now the distribution trap. Do you know anything about contract negotiations? Do you know anything about IFTA? Arbitration? IFTA Arbitration? Assignment for the benefit of creditors? Do you even know what Force Majeure is? Royalty payments? Marketing cap? Return reserve? Well, you’re going to sign a contract with all of this in it so you better know it. What about international sales to other territories? Do you have reps you can trust? Can you even find a rep and sign a contract that your not going to get screwed over? Well, all of the above I mentioned in that contract you’re going to sign to a company in the US will be for sure, in the contracts, if you ever get a chance for international sales to other countries. Do you know how to negotiate a deal? Know what’s fair? Know what is too expensive? Do you know that the industry is flooded and it is very hard to get noticed. Do you know which companies rip people off? I do… I know all of this and a ton more and they don’t teach this in school and not even in film school. These are the pitfalls of the business and it’s filled with sharks, piranha’s, gators and vultures. I’m not going to get into torrents and piracy. It’s called show business… it’s a business. If you don’t know the business side of it… then why am I going to tell anyone to get into it.I’ve been in the horror business for over 20 years total. Getting traction now. I have a distribution company, I know how to do my own international sales. I even know what to do when I am getting fucked. I got screwed out 1.4 million dollars our 3rd year of business and my partner has been in it for 40 years… and we still got screwed. I’ve sued other companies and had people try to rip me off with screenplays. I’m in the middle of suing a company right now for another filmmaker as we speak. It’s been a very difficult road but it’s a difficult road for everyone that is going to last in this business. I got horror stories man… make the hair stand on end. Now you can say… I am doom and gloom and you’re fucking right. But… I am being honest here… wouldn’t you want to know the pitfalls and truth of what you’re getting into rather than me saying, “Go for it man! Your going to make millions!” Or would you rather hear a veteran of the industry say, “You’re going to get fucked, watch your ass and this is what you look out for.”
  • 10. HoTS: During your recent Live Facebook video you mentioned a podcast, when and where can fans expect to hear it? Who will you be doing it with?
  • Biro: I’m working with Brad Slaton of the Picking Brains Podcast that is now defunct but still available to hear past episodes. He’s a great interviewer and sort of crazy like me. Well, exactly as crazy as me… but not really since he has been podcasting for a lot longer than me It will be just us, chatting away, talking about everything really. You would figure it would be horror based and it will be, a bit but it will be more of a crazy sort of thing. I don’t think anyone will actually be ready for it. It’s a bit more entertainment but devious, fucked up that’s going to offend a lot of people. Well, normal people. Were going to see where it goes… It’s called… Stephen and Brad… The Podcast. Should be crazy interesting to say the least… it’s happening very soon, sooner than you think
  • HoTS: Thank you again Stephen, for this awesome interview. we appreciate your honesty and candor and enjoyed your answers immensely. Best wishes to you and everyone at the Unearthed family.
Posted by Candace Stone in Categories, EXCLUSIVE, GORE OR EXTREME HORROR, INTERVIEWS, 0 comments
WIHM: Rodleen Getsic’s tortured performance in The Bunny Game

WIHM: Rodleen Getsic’s tortured performance in The Bunny Game

An extreme cinema actress I feel is worthy of much praise is Rodleen Getsic and her phenomenal portrayal in The Bunny Game.

Rodleen Getsic in The Bunny Game

While the film itself seems to get nothing but hate amongst both the horror and extreme cinema communities alike (I don’t share this view personally), Rodleen’s performance still gets mostly praise.
Rodleen Getsic in The Bunny Game
The reason I choose her and why I think her role was special is due to the immense physical and emotional abuse she willingly endured during the making of the film. Her dedication to the role is apparent, and she stated that she dug deep within herself and drew upon past abuses to bring authenticity to the role.Rodleen Getsic in The Bunny Game The director (Adam Rehmeier) of the film stated that other than drug and alcohol abuse nothing in the film was staged. So what does that mean? What all was portrayed in the film?

It means that Rodleen agreed to endure some pretty vile acts of torture for the making of this film. She describes her participation as “more art than film”. She wanted “to use the production as a cathartic process, to really purge some of the traumas she had”. She would fast before shooting and be in a meditative state during scenes. For the more physical demands she drew strength from a rape and other sexual abuses from her youth. Rodleen Getsic in The Bunny Game She stated, “I’ve had some intense experiences that most people might not have lived through” and “The reasons why I made this film keep emerging. But really I wanted to move through the what-ifs and show I could make it through”. She finally goes on to say, “Part of my soul did die in making this film”.

So just what all did she endure for the making of the film? Rodleen Getsic in The Bunny Game I can only assume that if nothing was staged, she was beaten, raped, spit and urinated on, had her head violently shaved, suffocated and even branded (she has the scars to prove this).

Getsic is a method actress and artist of the highest quality and she deserves proper recognition and praise. Her dedication to the role makes this movie so much more than just “torture porn” it adds layers of depth and allows us to share in someone else’s life changing experience. I found it both moving and profound and I commend her for her impressive contribution to extreme cinema.

Rodleen Getsic

Posted by Candace Stone in WOMEN IN HORROR, 0 comments
Grotesque: A Guilt-Free Pleasure

Grotesque: A Guilt-Free Pleasure

Grotesque (2009) is a Japanese torture porn film directed by Koji Shiraishi.
First of all, I’d like to say I’m not a big fan of the term “torture porn” as it’s used in a derogatory fashion by film snobs to discredit an entire genre and I find it offensive, but when it comes to the movie Grotesque there is simply no better description. The antagonist, a “doctor”, kidnaps a young couple and tortures them for sexual arousal, promising their release if they succeed in making him excited, making this torture porn by definition.

The movie is honest about what it is and doesn’t pussyfoot around pretending to have a plot or trying to develop characters; it just dives right in.

Grotesque (2009)

****HERE THERE BE SPOILERS****

Our young couple wakes up gagged and tied to a table and is asked if they would die for each other. There is a brief little flashback to offer us some insight and let us know they were on a first date; that is as much backstory as the viewer will get.

From there it gets all molesty. I appreciate the fact that this movie advocates equality between the sexes because both are manhandled accordingly, and every torture is doled out evenly.

After the molestation, we proceed to chainsaw surgery, the removal of nipples, nails to the scrotum and a graphic penis removal, which succeeds in finally arousing our good doctor, and he woefully admits that they have won (curse them!) and will be released.

The two wake up in a sterile hospital room where all their parts (except one) have been reattached and they’re healing nicely. I was a tad confused at first in this scene and wasn’t sure if it was a dream – it’s not. Either way, it gives us a chance to catch our breath before the next onslaught.

Their tormentor reappears and promises to release them once they are healed. He then changes his mind and back to the racks they go.

The next scene was a real nail-biter. The male protagonist is given an intestine tether (his own) and has the chance to save the female… he almost makes it and you truly are rooting for him along with the doctor who is shouting encouragements at him.

The end of this movie is a bit silly and provides comic relief after the hard watch the viewer has just endured. The comedy paired with the fact that we have no attachment to the characters makes this movie a guilt-free pleasure allowing us to walk away with minimal psychological damage.

5/5  for Grotesque

Grotesque is not a fantastic movie, but it accomplished everything it set out to do.

Posted by Candace Stone in GORE OR EXTREME HORROR, MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, SLASHERS AND BAD HUMANS, 0 comments
This Just In: Saw VIII Announced

This Just In: Saw VIII Announced

Just When You Thought
It Was Safe to Start Gaming Again
Saw: Legacy

By Woofer McWooferson

Saw II

Saw II

When the first Saw, written by Lee Whannell and directed by James Wan on a budget of only $1,200,000, grossed over $55,000,000 in two months, it was immediately clear that sequels would follow. Each new film introduced increasingly violent and gore-filled traps, something that was understated in the first, and the franchise became known as part of the burgeoning torture porn phenomenon. Though the sequels were directed by others, such as Darren Lynn Bousman, who helmed the immensely popular Saw II, Saw III, and Saw IV, Whannell and Wan remained active in the series as producers. By the seventh film, however, the budget was over $20,000,000 but the gross in the first month was only $45,670,855. Not a good return on investment in Hollywood books. This makes the announcement of a new installment both surprising and intriguing.

Saw III

Saw III

Since Saw 3D (2010) tied together everything from movies I through VI, it seemed the franchise might actually be complete and Jigsaw would be laid to rest. Not so. Another Saw film is in the works according to sources at Lionsgate. Josh Stolberg (Crawlspace) and Pete Goldfinger (Clown) will be writing the eighth Saw film, with director Wan and screenwriter Whannell returning as executive producers. No word yet on what the story will be – origin (there’s been quite a bit of that in the series already), reboot  (really?), or sequel (which is what the tentative title suggests (seems  a bad idea given how Saw 3D, wrapped up the series) – but it’s a safe bet that it will involve the elaborate traps for which the franchise is renowned.

Saw IV

Saw IV

There has also been no word on who will direct or whether franchise star Tobin Bell will return as Jigsaw, but a Saw film without Jigsaw is like a Hellraiser without Pinhead – disastrous.

House of Tortured Souls will keep you updated as more details are released.

Posted by Alan Smithee in HORROR NEWS, 1 comment
MOVIE REVIEW: American Guinea Pig: Bouquet of Guts and Gore (2014)

MOVIE REVIEW: American Guinea Pig: Bouquet of Guts and Gore (2014)

By Travis Love

AGP 2

Writer and director: Stephen Biro
Starring: Ashley Lynn Caputo, Caitlyn Daily, and Lilly Dickenson

Since the making of Stephen Biro's American Guinea Pig: Bouquet of Guts and Gore was announced, there has been a clamoring to see this film. After watching it for the first time, I wonder: is it warranted? Emphatically so. This film isn't just cinematic viewing, it's an exercise in testing personal thresholds regarding how much the viewer can actually stomach and still continue watching. American Guinea Pig: Bouquet of Guts and Gore will test your limits.

The grainy and gritty feel blurs the lines of believability and causing you to reassure yourself, "It's just a movie. This isn't real", but no matter how much you tell yourself that, it has the uncanny ability to allow a little shred of doubt to seep in. The torture is cathartic, unbridled, and animalistic, and at no time do you feel what you're watching is anything other than an obligation to take a life deemed worthy of this "attention".

Orders are barked from masked men filming, shouting their directions like circus trainers would to an animal that without direction would lash out uncontrollably. The imagery you're privy to is nothing short of grotesque and demented, and the FX are so lifelike that you easily become sucked into the atrocities that unfold.

This film firmly places its foot down defiantly, and its claim is simple: You will watch everything we have to show you. If you feel sickened, then you receive no sympathy. You have only yourself to blame. American Guinea Pig: Bouquet of Guts and Gore unapologetically captures your attention and holds it prisoner the entire duration of the film, and I, for one, can only show my gratitude to Stephen Biro and everyone involved for doing so. Thank you, Mr. Biro.

Posted by Alan Smithee in MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: House of Whores (2015)

MOVIE REVIEW: House of Whores (2015)

By Amy Lynes

HOW

Director: Paul Arnone, Tom Komisar and Daniel Murphy

Starring: Linda Schrader, Linsey McIntire,
R.J. Cecott, Maella Cai Vane, and Nurse Hatchet

Wow...Where do I even begin with this one? House of Whores was unlike anything I have seen thus far, and I have seen my fair share of shocking and unexplainable shit. It isn't often that I am stunned into silence, but this movie managed to accomplish just that. For close to a half an hour after the credits rolled, I was still sitting there, trying to figure out just what in the actual fuck I had just witnessed.

The movie starts off with sexy “Nurse Hatchet” warning that the movie could be considered graphic and disturbing by some viewers, which she underscores by dancing seductively and smearing blood all over herself.

Then it starts of with some sleazy asshole auditioning young women for his film project, Double Fisting. He has assembled three young actresses and, based on the cheesiness of his questions alone, it's obvious that he's a real dirtbag and is most likely just looking to get laid and maybe see some weird and kinky shit along the way.

The poor, unsuspecting girls are trying to get cast in this guy’s shitty spank film when three completely fucked up, psycho ass clowns (Smasho, Slasho, and Shago) suddenly bust in on them and a whole new kind of movie begins to go down.

As the title suggests, House of Whores is a sick, sleazy, and sexually violent Indie horror film, complete with new ways to rape and torture. Thanks to this film I will never look at a cheese grater, toilet brush, or a drill quite the same way again. Pain, suffering and unrelenting brutality are swiftly doled out to the unlucky ladies who had the misfortune of showing up for this casting call from hell and it is not pretty. And by the time these clowns are done with them, neither are they.

Even though its run time is only somewhere around an hour, we have a sort of intermission period every so often, a break from the carnage that allows Nurse Hatchet center stage with her sexy, blood covered dance. As much as I love her and have been a longtime fan, it seems to distract from the film and like maybe it would have been better suited as part of the bonus features as it really has nothing much to do with the storyline. I didn't really understand it, although it is nice to see her getting more exposure.

Those with an aversion to a plethora of body fluids or a weak stomach, will want to avoid this movie. I kind of wish I had. It was nauseating and, as I mentioned earlier, I have seen more than my fair share of extreme movies and nothing much bothers me. But this film? House of Whores depicts a laundry list of vomit-inducing acts, from forced rape to Dirty Sanchezes and shit eating. At one point it actually made me gag. This movie is for those who are into really sleazy and downright gross exploitation or snuff films and who aren't easily disgusted. I know there is an audience out there for this type of film. A large one, in fact. I am just not one of said audience members. Still, I give the filmmakers a lot of respect for taking on a film like this. Not all filmmakers are this brave with films such as this.

This movie spits, defecates, and bleeds all over its viewers and makes no apologies for it. Zero. But I suppose that’s part of the allure and most likely what the filmmakers set out to do with it. If that's the case, it has done its job rather effectively and this little Indie film is a raging success.

My stomach just couldn't take it. When it was over, I was nauseated, I felt like I needed to be disinfected, and I kind of hated myself for sitting through the whole thing.

And viewers beware! House of Whores 2: The Second Cumming will be on it's way soon...

Rating 5/10

Posted by Alan Smithee in MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments