The Sadness (2021) Movie Review

Spoiler-free so you can read before you watch

The Sadness (2021) Movie Review

Horrorific content by adrian on May 23rd, 2022 | Movie Review | Survival, Cannibalism, Madness, Gore, Zombie, Extreme, Splatter, Virus, Apocalypse

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A movie about a young couple who attempt to reunite after a mind-altering virus removes the inhibitions of the city's residents, turning them into depraved, sadistic monsters.

The Sadness was directed by Robert Jabbaz and stars Berant Zhu as Jim, Regina as Kat, Tzu-Chiang Wang as The Businessman, Ralf ChiuYing-Ru ChenLan Wei-Hua, and Tsai Chang-Hsien.

The Sadness (2021)

Everything about director Rob Jabbaz's feature debut reads like another formulaic horror movie about zombies or an outbreak that has become too familiar in the current age of pandemics. However, it is quickly apparent that The Sadness does not follow the same path as most other viral horror movies. Instead, Jabbaz's film is a shocking, over-the-top horror movie that attempts to push all the buttons and offend as many people as possible. It's gross, disgusting, and extremist - but some viewers will still find it entertaining.

The premise of the movie should be immediately familiar to the viewer. Residents of Taiwan and its government largely ignored a pandemic, both quickly returning to their everyday routines. A talk show host dismisses the warnings of his guest, a medical professional, about a new mutation in the virus- one that causes rabid-like symptoms in the infected. It's background noise on a peaceful, unremarkable morning that introduces lovers Kat and Jim. When Jim drops Kat off at her job, it becomes a fight for them to reunite, as the mutation quickly spreads and the city descends into violence and chaos.

No amount of preparing could ever fully safeguard against the madness that Jabbaz unleashes. The infected chaotically interrupt breakfast service at a local diner without any warning, with blood and hot grease melting flesh. The prevalence of violence is merely a lighthearted way of beginning this conversation about a particularly vile outbreak. More than just copying rabies, the virus suppresses people's natural urges, and those affected give in to their most base desires. This movie is not for the faint of heart. It deals with many dark and taboo subjects matter in a very graphic way. The pacing is fast, and the film pushes the envelope in terms of what is considered acceptable.

The story provides enough details about the protagonists to make us want them to survive their dangerous journey through a city filled with body parts and dead bodies. However, "The Sadness" does not have time for much character development or depth, moving quickly from one event to the next. As a result, the unassuming duo is often overshadowed by the more forceful and morally corrupt infected they face.

A doctor tells Kat that everything must be politicized and that no one trusts doctors anymore. This is a clear indication that Jabbaz isn't just trying to shock people but is criticizing the current state of affairs. "The Sadness" is a warning about the horrors that humanity is capable of. It's not just the bloody violence shown, but how quickly everything falls apart.

Worth Watching?

Jabbaz's debut is angry and fearless. After the end credits, the title emotion takes over, which finally provides relief from the violence, leaving the viewer with a very dim view of society. The film's subject matter is extremely heavy and disturbing, dealing with topics like rape and necrophilia. The director presents this material in a straightforward and brutal manner, breaking many traditional filmmaking rules along the way. "The Sadness" is a powerful film that compels you to confront the darkness within people and challenges you to look away.

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