Director Taylor Sheridan, enters into the horror genre, with his first venture entitled simply as Vile, from one could perceive as the most depraved and demented mindsets of screenwriters Eric Jay Beck and Rob Kowsaluk (executive producer), assisting in adding another volume to the torture-porn sub-genre. Eric also served as producer and actor in a filthy piece of footage that examines the cruelty of others personal gains, while abusing the innocent. Most of the films in this sub-genre, usually show one voyeurism of disease mentality condemning the charity of others, yet Vile takes it to another sickening level, of two groups of innocent bystanders now force to submit to wickedness in order to gain freedom, only to result in savagery and corrupting their morals. The film subtlety asks the audience to examine themselves, their friends, in a crisis moment, with no possible choice of exit and freedoms unless they violate not only themselves but also each other, and how one return from that brink of insanity to salvage the remainder on their own lives.
The concept of the film starts with friendly couples driving along, stopping at a gas station and assisting a woman who seems a tad too well dressed for hauling a small gas can, and to the distrust and disgusting of the women accompanied the men fall for cougar the seductress (McKenzie Westmore), and aid in their own demise. After a quick series of squabbles the two couples find themselves trapped with fancy collars and a video, featuring the legendary Maria Olsen, who graced 66 horror films in some manner, informing the captives of their fate and what they must do to leave alive. Just one thing, another five people also exist in the house located in the middle of nowhere. While this storyline seems familiar to Saw 2 (2005), this film relies on the individuals to extract chemicals from the brain through this electronic measuring tool, which links remotely to a screen showing indicting a horizontal vile (pun intended), which slowly fills to 100% all to a release of desire chemicals. The group decides to get the chemical, likely dopamine, which interface between stress, pain and mixed with high physical exertion and pleasure, by torturing each other. No one in the group suggests the possibility of sexual deviance, the same chemical releases would release themselves, however instead of a vile creation of torture porn, the film actually become a graphic adult erotic movie. As dopamine, triggers multiple higher functions in the brain, with behavior and resulting from motivations, arousals, rewards and motor activity, and the best answer, pulling fingernails, hot irons, cutting, busting kneecaps, and extracting teeth.
However, with the torture-porn films, all is not as it seems, there always lies a secret, a twist, and herein presents no different but it is who presents the twists, for the audience to realize comes with rewards and terrors. Soon enough the principle characters reveal themselves as the strip away their skin, and face grim moral decisions, each time more twisted than that of before, and yet still with some basic rules enforce, no genital mutilations. The physical pain, the group endures finds a level of crudeness and at times quite repetitive, even with more advance squeamish involvement that tries to pull the audience into the scenes providing them with more unpleasantness and yet still allowing for personal freedoms and choices when dealing with unexpected requests.
Sheridan finds himself surrounded by a competent cast, and most with familiarity to the horror genre, with talents of Greg Cipes and Akeem Smith (both of Holla II fame) and then exquisite Maya Hazen (Shrooms) yet, even this level begins to crumble and under the weight of the location, the limitations to explore, to venture further. However, mundane filters over the entire film, the characters feel disjointed in more than just a physical mannerism; a lack of interesting moral battles eludes the audience. An element that the torture-porn similar to the slasher and even the splatter films, is the aspect of delving deeper into morality and even spiritual aspects, for example the inquisition of the human spirit to authority suppose masterful overlord mentality. Nevertheless none of that ever occurs, perhaps as the target audience requires the mere participation as addition paying voyeurs who enjoy vile material acts.