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Monsters Within: The Top Five Snuff-Horror Films [NSFW]

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FEARnet is proud to present a guest feature by Travis Meyers, frontman for extreme horror-metal band Margin Of Error. Travis is fascinated by the darkest corners of the human mind, and the real-life monsters who wear the mask of humanity. He explores that theme in his music, and appreciates fearless filmmakers who do the same thing... so today he's putting the spotlight on their unflinching visions.

Proceed with caution: these films show no mercy (we've got NSFW clips to prove it), and Travis gets into graphic detail. If you've got what it takes, hit the jump and check it out!

Although gore is a mainstay in a snuff-styled film, the real key to their terror is that these killers treat humans like objects. They don't care. Their selfish love for gratifying themselves through torture, rape, degradation, and the thrill of killing their victims takes main stage. Those ingredients, showed in a very crude fashion, make the following films some of the most disturbing, realistic, and unforgettable in horror. Only a few films can say they have fully captured this in its most unrelenting form, and it's those that top this list...

5. SLAUGHTERED VOMIT DOLLS
This was the first in Lucifer Valentine's vomit-gore trilogy. Now I know what you're saying: "What the hell is vomit-gore?" I thought the same thing, and many others have as well... and that lead to huge success for these films in the underground. In hand-held style, the film follows around a bulimic prostitute through her daily life as you see her spiral down a path of drugs, abuse, rape, selling her soul to the devil, and of course... vomit! The film excels in its surreal approach to her delusions: for example, you see a dismembered man try to play the guitar with one arm; you also see a man vomit into another mans split-open skull. It's sick and twisted, but the video editing is most impressive. If that isn't enough, a very powerful ending will be sure to silence the room and leave you with an image you won't soon forget. Please note that I have not seen the final two films in this series (due to them being out of stock virtually everywhere online), but I heard they are even sicker than this one. Please feel free to check out ReGOREgitated Sacrifice and Slow Torture Puke Chamber. I know I will soon.

4. HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER
This is one of the more frightening films on this list, because it accurately portrays the two sides of a serial killer. You see Henry show love and protection toward the people he cares for... right after he brutally murders a stranger. Henry loves the thrill of killing: in one scene he fakes a car problem and parks by the side of the road; before long a car rolls up to help him and Henry shoots the good samaritan. Later, Henry buys a video camera and begins videotaping his own killings, creating a whole new dimension to his complete detachment toward his victims. In the most disturbing scene, you see Henry and Otis, a friend he convinces to kill with him, sexually assault a woman before strangling her as they film it on their video camera. It's truly sick, and feels very real. A chilling must-see film.

3.  SCRAPBOOK
Leonard is creating a scrapbook of all the people he is close to; he takes pictures of them and has them write in his journal. Sounds innocent enough, right? What I didn't tell you is that he's a maniac who takes polaroids of his victims during their suffering and forces them to write down their feelings about it... and if they refuse, he kills them. Shortly after this nightmare begins, you see Leonard involved in a brutal rape scene that leaves a girl bloodied. After the act, Leonard urinates on her helpless body. This film will surely have your stomach turning as Leonard continues turning the pages of his scrapbook. The very grainy low-budget look only aids in its realism and makes the audience feel just as dirty as the atrocities they've watched. Scrapbook is a great film that helped slice the way for the filth of the 21st century, and I feel that the #1 pick on my list wouldn't be here if it wasn't for this one.

2. GUINEA PIG: THE DEVIL'S EXPERIMENT
I'm not sure if there is a more widely known "snuff" film out there... the director actually had to prove that none of the actors were murdered during the production. As the film begins, you follow a group of people who kidnap a girl and proceed for the next 40 minutes to inflict a plethora of torture tactics on her: burning, cutting, harsh sounds... and in the most famous scene, you observe a needle being used to pry out the eye of the defenseless victim. The difference between this film and the others is that you identify more with the victim then her killers. The minutes feel like days as you are forced to watch and almost feel the torturous acts forced upon this young girl.

1. THE 'AUGUST UNDERGROUND' SERIES
These three films (August Underground, August Underground Mordum, and August Underground Penance) are some of the most depraved, disturbing, and revolting films of all time. Although strikingly similar to Scrapbook, these films go further and feel a lot more realistic in their approach. All the films follow a group of serial killers as they record all of their thrill-kills on camera. A true snuff-styled film, the hand-held video is all the audience sees. The effects are so real, and the main realism factor lies in how the majority of them are done in one take, with no camera cuts... which really has you questioning whether these are actors or real victims. Incest, necrophilia, blood-squirting throat slicing, vomiting, penis removal with fingernail scissors, cutting open a woman's stomach and then fucking the wound... the list goes on. These films will not let your imagination do the work; they show it all, and will have you begging for mercy. You won't just  feel dirty after watching - you'll feel like less of a person. These films continue to shock people into submission, and many viewers cannot even make it all the way through them. Are they the sickest films of all time? They top my list.

Real fear lies in what another human is truly capable of, and these films captured that fear in some of the most raw, violent, and realistic ways imaginable. Monsters aren't real, but real monsters exist... in the people that surround us. There is a fine line between sane and insane, and these brilliant filmmakers blurred that line in a most interesting manner.

--Travis Meyers

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