**Some minor spoilers**
I finally got to see this one today, and as is sometimes the case, I regret having owned the DVD for what - a year - and not giving it a spin.
For me it defied all expectations, and I consider it a far better picture than I was led to believe. The Director made a couple decisions that influenced me in this regard, first off the film almost has no soundtrack. What is used a pips and pops of electronic psychobabble that in one sense don't suit the movie at all (there's no new technology here) but in another just highlights those odd moments of wanton violence.
Then the Director leaves plenty of space at all times. He lets the film breath. The sequences where the One Eye is training up could have been cut down (it was my first instinct) but I must admit that I found he was not doing Hollywood window-dressing, and pretending this drug-addled girl could suddenly become a super hero.
And finally the slow motion sequences in the violent scenes added something too. it made them the antithesis of what you'd expect - fast cutting, people running, hiding, shooting, fighting, and moved them more in violent poetry (the booklet with the DVD talks about the influence of Peckinpah, which is obviously where some of this came from). It really worked.
It goes without saying that Christina Lindberg is outstandingly beautiful. And while the other characters aren't particularly well cast (or that their performances are all that great), I found Christina could easily carry the whole thing - something of beauty in an ugly world.
Some scenes of note are the reading of the communications between One Eye and her parents after she's spent time in the brothel, harrowing in their simplicity. The climatic scene which involves a horse is just amazing too.
I saw the hardcore version and found it didn't distract - although it's hardly essential. Like my recent viewing of The Witch Who Came from the Sea, this another film that I think could do with some meaty study, it's very very good.
So yeah, I recommend this film that probably needs no recommendation. The awesome soundscape, locations, and the wonderful Christina elevate this above your usual rape/revenge tale. Recommended.
Thriller: A Cruel Picture: amazon.co.uk (Hardcore inserts version)
Thriller: A Cruel Picture: amazon.co.uk (Non Hardcore inserts version)