Sigh. Another day, another misleading title. Let’s get one thing straight right off the bat. This is NOT a sequel to Ruggero Deodato’s Cannibal Holocaust. It isn’t even an imitator. It isn’t even fiction (at least, it isn’t meant to be). It’s original title is “Nuova Guinea, l’isola dei cannibali” (“New Guinea: Island of Cannibals”), and it’s a 1974 mondo movie, purporting to feature footage shot for the benefit of Queen Elizabeth on the occasion of her visit to the island, so she would have a better idea of the culture she was encountering. Whatever. In any event, this is a film made five years prior to the movie its title suggests it is following, and doesn’t actually have any cannibals, as such, in it.
Which isn’t to say it isn’t exploitative. This is pure shockumentary, so fans of the mondo film will no doubt be pleased by the maggot-eating or the scene where mourners rub the oils from a thoroughly bloated corpse on their bodies. And surely any exploitation flick that opens with footage of the Queen and Prince Phillip is a fine example of… er… something.
Otherwise, however, it’s impossible to recommend this effort to anyone who isn’t already a lover of Mondo Cane and its innumerable offspring. The voyeurism, condescension, hypocrisy, butchered animals and delirious racism typical of such films are all present and correct. So this is another case where you like this if you like this sort of thing. But all in all, it’s another reminder of how the shockumentary remains, by and large, the most depressing backwater in the land of the exploitation film.