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THE MAN WHO COLLECTED FOOD (aka CANNIBAL COLLECTOR, 2010)
Directed and written by Matthew Roth
Starring Mike N. Kelly, Gary Wagner, Lila Miller, Russell Fox
The beauty of THE MAN WHO COLLECTED FOOD is how deliriously fucked up it is. This is a fantastic story about addiction. Though it’s not as attractive as drugs or sex addiction and not as geek accepted as comics or films, the story follows a man who simply has an unhealthy addiction that endangers his way of life. In this case, it’s food. The film begins with Miguel making his way through the aisles of the supermarket filled with glee at the new products he is finding. Everything seems great for Miguel and though he may be a bit over-enthusiastic about his food purchases, he seems like a decent enough guy. That is, until we realize that Miguel has given up food entirely and instead resorts to cannibalism in order not to eat his precious collection.
Sounds quirky? Damn straight it is. THE MAN WHO COLLECTED FOOD is a pitch-black comedy that never takes itself too seriously, but never makes fun of itself either. Though utterly so wrong, you can’t help but laugh when Miguel admits his problem to a self-help group, then has to murder them all in order to keep his secret. The film clearly illustrates the horror of collecting and though it takes the addiction to an extreme level, I know some comic book collectors who feel the same way about their funny books. The gore is not gratuitous, but there are some nice bits of splatter, plus seeing the lengths Miguel goes to keep his secret safe is twisted fun.
Though some of the performances are somewhat amateur, the leads in this film are pretty strong, mainly Miguel and his mother. The bombastic ending is over the top, but with the ridiculous concept the film is based on, I rolled with it. Basically, THE MAN WHO COLLECTED FOOD is an odd gem filled with gore and laughs that may shock the viewer depending on his/her level of addiction to all things geek at how close to home the film actually hits.