The extreme cannibal movie ‘Raw’ caused ‘multiple’ people to pass out in Toronto

You know it's a good horror movie — or at least a properly revolting one — when people faint while watching it, and that's just what happened at the Toronto Film Festival last night when “multiple audience members” passed out during the film's premiere screening (via The Hollywood Reporter).

“An ambulance had to be called to the scene as the film became too much for a couple patrons,” said the film's marketer Ryan Werner, who is having a great day.

Lest you think this is merely a clever publicity ploy on the part of distributor Focus World, more than one attendee at last night's screening — including Girls on Film co-host Alicia Malone — corroborated the account on Twitter:





Written and directed by first-time filmmaker Julia Ducournau, Raw's synopsis reads as follows:

A shy, vegetarian student at a veterinary college develops an insatiable lust for flesh as the result of a gruesome hazing ritual, in this grisly and gory tale of a cannibalistic coming of age.

The offending scene is likely the same one that Bloody Disgusting reviewer Joe Lipsett described in his review as “one of the most uncomfortable and anxiety-provoking sex scenes in recent memory.” So, you can imagine.

Raw seems to fall squarely in the tradition of the New French Extremity, a horror filmmaking movement that hit its peak in the '00s with such films as Alexandre Aja's High Tension, Pascal Laugier's Martyrs, and Alexandre Bustillo and Julien Maury's Inside, whose special-effects makeup artist Olivier Afonso is responsible for Raw's gory sights. Word on the film has so far been excellent, with Bloody Disgusting critic Joe Lipsett comparing it favorably to the 2000 cult werewolf movie Ginger Snaps and writing: “Raw is an extremely confident film that will satisfy both gore hounds and purveyors of smart horror.” And in a review out of the film's world premiere at Cannes, Variety's Catherine Bray called it a “deliciously fevered stew of nightmare fuel that hangs together with a breezily confident sense of superior craft.”

I am both excited and horrified at the prospect of seeing this.