When it comes to finding new, underexposed horror movies to sink my fangs into in the middle of the night, there's only two paths I can go down: spend an hour watching every trailer and briefly skimming over reviews to see if its worth my time, or reading the movies title and a one sentence plot summary and deciding its the one. The latter of the two is how I ended up spending a hour and a half and a couple bucks this weekend checking out HUMAN HIBACHI, the blood and meat filled found footage film by writer and director Mario Cerrito. And I gotta say, following my gut instinct on a film that was obviously a cannibal flick worked out wonderfully because taken for what it is, Human Hibachi is an over-the-top meatfest for horror fans that don't care about a deep, complex storyline and just want to see some people get chopped up, sautéed, and fed to a party of sick fucks who crave human meat. It is worth noting, though, that this movie is absolutely not going to be for everyone - and the reasoning isn't even because of graphic scenes or anything like that; the b movie quality of the film will definitely put some people off since it feels like just a long YouTube video, but I honestly kinda dug it - and the quality is justified by the film by suggesting it was all shot on a phone (remember, it's a found footage film). Human Hibachi is as dumb fun as it sounds and while it may not be the most graphic or the best acted film I've ever seen, it's got enough packed into its runtime to make it a fun in-the-background flick or a low expectation date night rental (and I mean that in the best way possible). If you're looking for something deemed too spicy for Amazon, Human Hibachi would make for some great "dinner and a movie" entertainment! (Readers beware: spoilers ahead! Please proceed with caution!)
The plot to this film is nice and simple; as a birthday gift to his girlfriend Katie (Elizabeth Gaynor), Reo (Sopheaktra Theng) decides to record the entire day from beginning to end so she has something to look back on when she's older. Their day is filled with breakfast and dress shopping before heading out to a bar for shots with some friends followed by the main event of the night: dinner at the restaurant that Reo recently got a job working at. The dreadful reality of the night is that instead of being served dinner, they are the dinner being served!! The restaurant owner Jin (Wataru Nishida) and his sick fucks who work for him slice and dice & kill and grill the party goers and serve them up to their loyal and elite club of cannibals who can't wait to suck down fingers, insides, blood and even freshly cut penis. What kinda of sick antics lay ahead for the amateur filmmakers and flesh eaters?! Find out in... HUMAN HIBACHI!
If that incredibly brief synopsis sounds even somewhat fun to you, just rent the damn movie already. Because honestly, this is a film that will not appeal to everybody - not even a lot of horror fans, I'm sure - and if this sounds like something you'd be into, you're better off just experiencing it simply because that plot summary pretty much is the entire - non pun intended - meat of the movie. The film starts off admittedly very slow and kinda boring, with scenes just showing the group of friends being drunk, Reo and Katie being annoying with each other and honestly just a bunch of junk that isn't really vital to the good half of the movie. In all honesty, cutting a lot of that would would have made Human Hibachi a short film rather than a full length, and it may have worked better like that, but sitting through the somewhat dull first half of the film pays off when the blood-soaked action finally kicks off! The scenes that await audiences have no shortage of dismemberment, meat grilling and cannibals playing with their finger foods - a beautifully crafted display of cannibalistic pleasures. Replacing sake shots with piss and blood, insides cooked up on the grill and slicing up a fresh penis all while a human head is on display at the center of the table are all things audiences can look forward to, and while the film was obviously shot on a budget and made for only the sickest of horror freaks like us, it doesn't necessarily feel super cheap or half assed, I have to be honest. Sure, the acting could have been a little better and there are definitely some parts that feel awkward and done in one take, but jumping into a movie named Human Hibachi, I'm not sure audiences are really expecting a Hollywood style horror flick, ya know?
At the end of the day, this film does what it is intended to do: entertain and shock you. If you want jump scares and mindfuck twist endings, we have plenty of other reviews posted on our website for films that will melt your brain. But Human Hibachi isn't here for none of that, it's job to deliver gory, meaty scenes with some pretty twisted fucks who enjoy consuming victims and filming the deeds for black market video, and it does it well. While I don't think it's extreme to the level that it should be removed from streaming services, it's definitely not for the weakest of stomachs, but it's nothing too over-the-top that most horror fans would be physically turned off by. If you want a simple, bloody hour and a half of cannibalistic consumption, Human Hibachi is definitely a fun flick that I wouldn't mind checking out again in the future. Once the camera makes it to the dinner table, this movie really begins to shine and the feast begins. Check it out!