The Green Elephant also known as Green Elephant Calf) is a 1999 Russian gore film directed by Svetlana Baskov. The film could not be distributed through the mainstream film circuit in Russia, due to its extremely violent images and obscene language. The International Film Festival Rotterdam programme commented that “Green Elephant is even more urgent because of the escalation of the war in Chechnya and growing criminality in the Russian army
Two men (both probably being junior officers) are held in a penal military prison. The room which they share looks like a dark cellar with a dripping sewer pipe running through it. One of the prisoners seems to be delirious and never stops talking. In order to cheer up his inmate, he tells lewd stories of his past, does some push-ups, comes up with crazy ideas and even mimics a heron only to make his companion go absolutely mad at him. The clumsy talker receives a violent beating from the enraged prisoner.The angry officer is then taken from the cell by a guard to clean up a dirty toilet bowl with a fork. Some time later, after a sleep the insane officer defecates in the only plate both share for eating, smears feces over his belly and devours a large portion of it. After doing so he offers a plate with the fecal matter to the other man right after he wakes up and drives him mad again.
The two main characters go through a series of humiliating acts conducted by a guard and a captain who seems to have a strong sadistic streak. One of the prisoners remains oblivious to the situation throughout the story while the other one is becoming more aggressive and less sane with every moment. The story resolves with an act of graphic violence, including rape, sodomy, disembowelment, committing suicide and dying of a blood loss.
The whole film has a horrible feel to it. The hand-held VHS camera-work really puts you in the basement with the two and the feeling of claustrophobia is felt in a strong way. So much so that you long to leave the cell and yet when you do when one of the soldiers is let out to do some work, the only rest bite you get is to watch him being made to clean a filthy toilet with a fork. You also get some black and white segments that show the guard and his assistant on the outside of the cell.
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