(Antonio Margheriti, 1980)
During the Vietnam war, POWs Tom (Tony King) and Charlie (Giovanni Lombardo Radice) are discovered eating human flesh in a tiger pit. Their captain, Norman Hopper (John Saxon) is bitten while helping them escape, and Tom and Charlie are sent to a psychiatric institute in America.
Roughly a decade later, Charlie is seemingly cured of his cannibalistic tendencies and released. His release is only temporary, however, as he bites and woman in a theater, kills a biker and a security guard, and holes himself up in the hunting section of a local market. Norman hears of the situation and convinces Charlie that he needs to resume treatment, but doesn't tell anyone of his own recent craving for blood despite having bitten the neighbor's niece.
It's discovered that the former POWs have contracted a virus that drives men to madness and cannibalism, and Norman has it as well. Before long, Tom, Charlie, Norman, and a recently infected nurse arm themselves and escape through the sewers of Atlanta. The military, fearing a pandemic, attempt to stop them at any cost.
Viewers expecting Cannibal Holocaust (or Ferox!)- style gutmunching and violence may be slightly disappointed with Cannibal Apocalypse as it's really more of an action flick than horror. It does contain a fair amount of bloodshed, but emphasis is placed more on the story and characters than most other Italian exploitation films. Director Antonio Margheriti shows off his decades of B movie-making experience with some attractive camerawork and a detailed (though discontinuous) plot. Cannibal Apocalypse can still be purchased new through third party sellers here.
8 months ago