Step Back into La Maison de “La Petit Mort” for a Sequel that’s Hard to Stomach!
La Maison de la Petit Mort’s doors remain open under new management, continuing to serve the dark web public interest with a wide variety of snuff services. For the right price, a fantasy-driven in-person torture show can be arranged for your liking, and one can be an commanding observer or one can get their hands dirty in participatory play where anything goes and pleasures are on-demand. The German snuff house expands their reach to a global level with live webcam shows that can be directed by the high price paying patron and the leather-cladded vixen staff carry out their illicit instructions exactly. A robust menu of dark pleasures, displayed on a new showreel of select gruesome services, are available at the simple transfer of a money wire or cash in hand for the depraved to make their fantasies a reality.
In 2009, German born director Marcel Walz helmed a linear, three-act narrative of tourists laid over in the big city winding up at patronizing a dark and dingy dive bar, La Maison de la Petit Mort, only to be abducted as inventoried stock for the rich to exploit in a slew of murder perversions. Five years later in 2014, Walz returns for a sequel, “La Petit Mort 2: Nasty Tapes,” with reprising principal actress Annika Strauss co-writing the film alongside Walz as well as stepping back into the sadistic black platform shoes of Dominique, one of the two lovely ladies with a lecherous and violent vocation. The direct sequel that follows a day-in-a-life of the snuff house’s employees making an advert showreel does not follow suit in the way the first film was structured. Instead of a linear, chronological narrative, “Nasty Tapes” evolves into an anthology of different kill archetypes for the marketing video. Walz’s Matador Films serves the production oversight with Harald Schmalz (“Collar”) coproducing the anthological torture porn feature.
“La Petit Mort 2: Nasty Tapes” doesn’t seen a whole lot of return on the original cast. The tourists were all mangled, mutilated, and murdered, the original Monique bit the dust in an escape attempt, and the first Maman rode off into the sunset rich with blood money. Instead, and among other things, “Nasty Tapes” folds a new treatment of terror with the same old eggs and flour by reinventing itself into an anthology type, introducing a new, blonde Monique (Yvonne Wölke, “Bad End”) into the batter, and disclosing the new owner of the freaky, fetish club, a feminine man by the name Monsieur Matheo Maxime (Mika Metz, “The Curse of Doctor Wolffenstein”). Annika Strauss is the only original cast member to reprise her original role of Dominique, the brunette to Monique’s blonde and who showed slight inkling of hesitation before being summoned to torture and murder. Strauss doesn’t buck the character trend as Dominque still displays disgust on her face when slicing a man’s facial features in a Picasso style portrait. Yet, Dominique remains loyal to the Monsieur and to the La Maison de la Petit Mort by committing the atrocities without question, unlike the regular administrative bookkeeping and housecleaning she regularly remains vocal in opposition in what’s a slither of dark humor contrast between her gruesome work compared to mundane work. Unlike Cyanide Savior singer Manoush, who was a very convincing merciless club owner Maman, Mike Metz plays a very different, more layered proprietor portrayed as someone who sees the work as a paycheck to fund his deepest desire – to be a beautiful woman just like his wife Jade Maxime (Micaela Schäfer, “Sky Sharks”). That’s about the gist of complexity the sequel has to offer with much of the thinly laid foundation is bricked up by a compilation of back-to-back kill scenarios that involve some extreme genre directors as special guests, such as Uwe Boll (“House of the Dead”), Dustin Mills (“Bath Salt Zombies”), Mike Mendez (“Big Ass Spider!”), and the late Ryan Nicholson (“Gutterballs”), taking part in the clandestine, underground activities in-person or on the web. The film fills out the cast with victims and victimizers in Armin Barwich (“The Terror Stalkers”), Bea La Bea, Babriela Wirbel (“Plastic”), Nichol Neukirch, Marc Rohnstock (“Necronos”), Thomas Pill (“Moor-Monster!”), Kai Plaumann, Markus Hettich (“No Reason”) and the twins, Barbara and Patrizia Zuchowski.
When going into a German gore film, such as “La Petit Mort 2: Nasty Tapes,” you have to go into It having an affinity for, or at least an understanding of, complete shameless representation of torture and killing of another human being for the simple and pure joy of the act. In other words, you have to be somewhat sick in the head. For me, personally, the sickness is rooted out of admiration for special effects and how the F/X artist(s) can create a realistic depiction of an unofficial autopsied anatomy. Filmmaker Ryan Nicholson, who passed away in 2019 of brain cancer, not only had a role in the Marcel Walz sequel, but was also the special effects artist, following in the footsteps of one of the notable German underground special effects artists, Olaf Ittenbach (“Premutos: The Fallen Angel”) who had done the graphic gags on the first film with head turning results. Nicholson, with a credit list that has a foot in independent productions and more mainstream, Hollywood productions, such as “Final Destination” and the remake of “Blair Witch” from 2016, doesn’t disappoint and keeps the blood, guts, and stringy sinew seamless in a gruesome pageantry of death that rivals and continues Olaf’s original stamp. Beyond the glossy surface of a blood glaze, “Nasty Tapes” is nothing more than a kill-after-kill anthology with no concrete premise for either of the individual slaughter vignettes. Title cards setup the kill moments with basic victim descriptors, such as married status, age, and how much their life has been paid for, but doesn’t humanize them in the least, creating zero compassion for the unsuspecting abductee fated for something far worse than death. Instead, Walz flips the script with more background on the clients with ipre-and-post interviews of their most intimate time at La Petit Mort. This structure can be monotonous as there’s nothing else to look forward to or to absorb empathetically as a viewer in an anthology that simply glorifies the leisure time of an undisturbed murder.
As a nail-pulling, nose-cutting, drill-holing, lip-stitching, dick-scissoring, gut-stabbing anthology, “La Petit Mort 2: Nasty Tapes” is a gory, good time and is even better now in high-definition with a 1080p Blu-ray release from Unearthed Films The AVC encoded BD25 looks as good as can expected for a shaky cam, hectically edited, and filthy dark German gore film presented in a 2.35:1 widescreen aspect ratio. Details are oleaginous wet with blood and tissue that incongruently with the Roland Freitag’s gloomy yet suppressed cinematography and Kai E. Bogatzki discordance and chaotic editing technique that is supposed to elicit extreme shock but consequently results in a loss of the intended grisliness. Unearthed Films‘ release exhibits no issues with compression, but the hues and tones appear to fuse in the near eliminate of some contours where there should be some. The German-English DTS-HD 5.1 mix can be score heavy, especially a hard and energized Tekkno title credits from composer Klaus Pfreundner that’s distinctive German, but “Nasty Tapes” has profound focus on its core selling point – torture. The very few scenes of intercut dialogue shots spliced into the client’s sociopathic session are well understood and do have prominence over the score, as well as the ambient milieu of screams and the integrated flesh destroying Foley, despite the cam-esque quality of the pseudo-testimonials. The burned-in English subtitles under the German Language only are synced well without error and with consistently good pacing. Disc extras include a behind-the-scenes making of cut out from the main camera, an alternate torture scene, a behind-the-scenes still gallery, a short advert of a naked woman strung up by her arms and being stapled with signs, and Unearthed Films trailers. The Blu-ray physical features don’t stray to far from normal Unearthed Films releases with a standard Blu-ray snapper case with grisly cover art of a marred victim’s plucked out eye and a Jade Maxime holding a bone saw and wearing ripped fishnet stockings and black lingerie. The pressed disc art has the rehashes the back cover image of Monsieur Maxime wearing a venetian mask. The Blu-ray comes unrated, region A locked, and has a manageably sufficing runtime of 83 minutes to not overkill the overkilling. Transparent in its surreptitious atrocities, “La Petit Mort II: Nasty Tapes” subsists as Marcel Walz charnel house of horrors with a new revamped anthology approach to razzmatazz special effects wetwork without any due remorse.