The Bridge‘s marquee proclaims that tonight, Saturday May 22, is “your last chance to see The Human Centipede.” We know that’s not true, that you can see it On Demand or what have you, but it sure is fun to sit in a theater (as Andrew and I did) and watch the movie with a bunch of likeminded folks. Tonight’s screening is at 11:15, in its honor, we pulled out this review from a couple weeks ago. Have fun!

The Human Centipede was playing at the Bridge Theatre last Friday and Saturday at midnight, and Appeal staffer Andrew Dalton and I went. We’re still not sure why, maybe because any film that tells everyone it’s the grossest thing you’ve ever seen is just asking for trouble.

In any case, it doesn’t look like it’s playing anywhere in SF now (an email to their PR agency has yet to be returned), which seems to be part of its distribution plan. But if you plan on downloading or renting it and want to be completely unspoiled, well, then the trailer has already done that to you. The jig is up! But we do give away some moments in our discussion, below. You have been warned!

Eve: Can you believe we went to see The Human Centipede? I cannot.

Andrew: What I can’t believe is how much popcorn I ate.

Eve: And you had leftovers that you took home! I loved that part. One does not see a popcorn doggy bag every day.

Andrew: (I’m poor) But also, it wasn’t lost on me that I spent the earliest part of my Mother’s Day watching The Human Centipede (sorry mom).

Eve: And this was not a press screening! We paid OUR OWN MONEY to see this movie.

Andrew: $10.50 for a midnight showing, even

Eve: Were you ever scared?

Andrew: I mean, not really? I feel like the first act was just winking at me. Like “hey, remember you’re at a terrible movie!”

Eve: Yeah, me too. A terrible movie with fantastic production values and the set from an early Michael Mann film.

Andrew: Actually, I was terrified that the cheekiness would give way to something truly horrible. But it didn’t really. I mean, in terms of “torture porn” which everyone and their doctor has labeled it as, it was probably not as bad as any of the Saw movies.

Eve: Right? Like, remember the one with the drowning in rotten pureed pig?

Andrew: All too well.

Eve: At the beginning of the movie, when we were told we were going to vomit, I immediately tried to think of a time a movie almost made me barf and that was the first thing I thought of.

We should tell everyone that, yes, shitting into a mouth happens in THC, but you don’t really see it. Oh man, that sounds like I am mad about that! I am not.

Andrew: Well, maybe the grossest part was when the diaper/bandages were dripping.

Eve: Not to be totally Joe Bob Briggs, but boobs were scarce, too.

Andrew: Oh yeah, it was all sideboob. Obscured by arms. Because of how they’re a centipede.

Eve: “I will cut your knee ligament to protect your modesty”

Andrew: But I’ll admit that it kind of made me feel icky that not only were these poor girls in such a terrible position, both literally and figuratively speaking, but also that they had to be topless.

Eve: More than once I thought to myself “what actress would agree to this?” Not in some feminist way, less how as a feminist everything I think therefore is, uh thought in a feminist way.

But because being on all fours is not comfortable, and your face slammed in your colleagues’ ass is even less so.

Andrew: I like that you call them colleagues.

Eve: I think I’m disappointed that I was not more disturbed, but how could anything live up to the hype?

Andrew: But I think maybe that was the point! Or maybe not, but as I was fumbling to make sense of it, I decided that the grossest part of the movie was what I expected to happen.

When the lead guy dies…as someone who has watched lots of gross movies and/or medical dramas there’s a certain fecal event that you expect to happen. But it didn’t! So, is that a missed opportunity to make me barf on the part of the director?

But then I started thinking maybe he knew people would expect that and then he left it out. So now I feel all gross for even expecting that to happen.

Somehow I’m more disgusting than the director of the World’s Most Disgusting Movie

Eve: I am about to top you. So, here you are, sewn to the person in front of you. That person takes a dump. It’s going into your mouth, there’s nothing you can do about it. You’re probably gonna gag, right, unless you’re in to that? And even if the Doctor somehow surgically removed your gag reflex.

Andrew: Oh right, I don’t think Herr Doctor explained anything about removing their gag reflex (is that a thing that can be done?) in the “medical” bit. Air quotes because the medical bit was basically a 7th grade life sciences presentation on an overhead projector.

Eve: No, you perv, you cannot remove a gag reflex. JESUS. Anyway, your soft palate is still open, so you can breathe through your nose.

Andrew: Why don’t you barf out your nose?

Eve: THAT IS WHAT I AM SAYING. That should have happened. I think The Human Centipede was not100% Medically Accurate“! POOP OUT YOUR NOSE

Andrew: Imagine that! At least there should have been some violent vomiting resulting in torn face-butt stitches

Eve: That no one tore their stitches anyway amazes me. I have torn stitches on my arm putting on a t-shirt!

Andrew: Although the infection on the last girl’s stitches was pretty gross. Like when the doctor kind of poked it. Ew.

Eve: That is when you say “ew”? Over pus? Which, that that was the only area of infection, given that so much of the surgery was on bacteria-laden areas (mouth, butt) is kind of amazing. There must have been some serious antibiotics in those IVs.

I just realized he never asked them if they had any allergies!

Andrew: Butt allergies

Eve: Latex, antibiotics, anesthetics…

Andrew: I mean, he’s a very lucky doctor. Is it even that common for Japanese guys to have the same blood type as two random white girls who are not related? I don’t know how blood types work.

Eve: Anyone who has an indoor pool is lucky.

Andrew: Oh yeah! I forgot he swam naked while they sat there.

Eve: I liked his house, a lot.

Andrew: You liked the basement hospital?

Eve: It’s so much nicer than the makeshift one I have in my garage. Would you call this a “slasher” movie?

Andrew: Not really, I thought lots of people had to die in slasher movies. The only real slashing we see is rump flesh. I think it has to be torture porn. But the real torture seems to be in how he makes them walk around his yard and watch him swim and whatnot. As opposed to just hacking up co-eds until they bleed out.

Eve: Is “medical horror” a genre?

Andrew: Of course it is. What a silly question.

Eve: OK, so that’s it, then. It’s medical horror. It’s just like “Malice.” “I AM GOD.”

Andrew: But out of a potential 3 barf bags, I give it a zero. Because of how I didn’t barf in my popcorn and got to take home the leftovers.

Eve: I feel that since we spent our own money, we can truly tell people if they should go see it or not. What say you?

Andrew: I’m OK with that

Eve: Wait. This fucking movie is not even currently playing here! Why is SFist being slowed down with its irritating ad (sorry Brock) if you can’t even see it in SF?

Andrew: Well, in that case I don’t feel bad telling people to watch it at home, you know, ironically.

Eve: does “ironically” mean “with drugs”?

Andrew: It could! I’m sure this thing will be on FearNet On Demand on Comcast in like a month.

Eve: I look forward to these DVD extras.

Andrew: Maybe the postmortem poop will be on the unrated cut and then I can stop feeling gross knowing they just edited it out.

the author

Eve Batey is the editor and publisher of the San Francisco Appeal. She used to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Deputy Managing Editor for Online, and started at the Chronicle as their blogging and interactive editor. Before that, she was a co-founding writer and the lead editor of SFist. She's been in the city since 1997, presently living in the Outer Sunset with her husband, cat, and dog. You can reach Eve at

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