• Martyn Wakefield

AAAAAAAAH! (REVIEW)

Dir. Steve Oram

Reviewer. Martyn Wakefield

Ever wondered what would happen if our evolution stopped part way through? What if we became the appearance of what we become with the mentality and attitude of the apes that came before us? Wonder no more as the premise behind AAAAAAAAH! is just that.

Based on true events and re-enacted by humans, AAAAAAAAH! follows a group of people in a world where humans act and speak like apes. From their manners and speech to the brutal mating and violence that occurs within the natural habitat of our furry kin.

Like A CLOCKWORK ORANGE via a David Attenborough documentary, there’s something unique and deep about this film that requires the viewer to dig under the surface to find a constant supply of Raster eggs treating the viewer to an insight into one of the country's greatest minds. Steve Oram is without a doubt one of the darkest visionaries we have and nothing shows his impact more than the brilliant ‘Sightseers’ to which Oram gives yet another star performance both in front of the camera and behind the scenes penning the film. Yet, when Oram takes full creative control the madness of ‘AAAAAAAAH!’ is just sheer enjoyment to behold.

The performances of the cast are next to brilliant and watching Toyah Wilcox slam a steak across a wall in imitation to something she has seen is a true reflection of how influential Oram is as a creative. If you can get the stars of The Mighty Boosh, Toyah Wilcox and Tony Way to play a complete film with no sound except that of a monkey and mimic their actions in a way that becomes believable, then Steve Oram, you have our attention.

Accompanied by a soundtrack just as surreal as the events unfolding, the story weaves between the “tribes” who treat each other with no respect or compassion to brutal results and no reason or effect. It’s a strange concept to get your head around but when you realise Oram’s inspirations were from a documentary the onscreen antics become more relatable.

AAAAAAAAH! will not appeal to everyone but it’s visual style and strange happenings become familiar to the genre of video nasties with their graphic detail. This is brutal, nasty and surprisingly deep but it sure as hell won’t be on the top of everyone’s list of films to watch but for those who do get round to seeing this will be the most thought provoking film you’ll catch this year. And that’s not something that was expected from a film starring Noel Fielding, Steve Oram and Toyah Wilcox.



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