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10.5.2024 13:21
The Sadness (2021) ‘哭悲’
Rating: ★★★★★
Genre: Horror
Themes: Survival Horror, Graphic Violence, Sexual Themes, The Undead

For those who have been following me for a while now, you're more than likely familiar with my shitty takes on the films I've watched. Now, with this platform, I'm excited to delve deeper into some of my favourite movies, and today, we will start with The Sadness "哭悲" (2021).

In recent years, the zombie subgenre has become somewhat predictable, often trapped within the confines of its own clichés. However, The Sadness emerges as a stark outlier, proving to be one of the most disturbing films in recent memory. With a fairly short runtime of 100 minutes, the film unleashes a relentless assault of murder, rape, and unspeakable cruelty, drawing its dark inspiration from our current global pandemic. It’s safe to say that The Sadness is not only a literal gorefest but also a potential future cult classic.

The film first piqued my interest when I learned it was inspired by the Crossed comics—a series I thoroughly enjoyed in my youth. So, of course, my curiosity led me to discover a movie that exceeded my expectations with its high-octane energy and sheer insanity. Director Rob Jabbaz, in his feature film debut, crafts a narrative that is deviously brutal and relentlessly gory.

Crossed: Badlands #54A n.d., comic cover, Avatar, written by G. Ennis, artwork by C. Zanier, cover by G. Andrade.

The Sadness stands out not just for its unadulterated, shocking content but also for its technical execution. The gore effects are impressively realistic (albeit, over the top in some parts of the film, but that’s where the fun comes in, am I right?), paired with a compelling storyline that will keep you on the edge from start to finish. Jabbaz, a Canadian director working in Taiwan, masterfully handles his film, driving an intense mix of Mandarin and Taiwanese Hokkien dialogue, adding an authentic layer to the viewing experience.

Twisted, gory, and violent, The Sadness is hands down the best pandemic-themed movie I’ve seen.  This film is a gore-drenched orgy of ultra-violence that feels like a cross between cinematic extremity and comic book excess.

For fans of the Crossed series or anyone with a taste for cinematic madness, The Sadness by Robert Jabbaz is a must-watch if you’re into horror gorefests. Be sure to keep an eye out for future projects from Jabbaz—I know I certainly will.