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What better way to get this new blog on its way than with a review of one of Hong Kong’s most notorious classic Category III shockers. I present to you the wickedly dark comedy gorefest Ebola Syndrome.

Directed by one of Hong Kong’s prolific directors Herman Wau who also shot another horror called The Untold Story (I haven’t seen this yet) and starring Anthony Wong in an ultra violent exploitation piece of filmmaking.

It’s 1986 and lowlife scum Kai works in a Chinese restaurant in Hong Kong. When he’s not serving dishes out to customers in a nonchalant way, he’s having sex with the boss’ wife! When he’s caught in the act in the room upstairs by the boss and his wife says he raped her, the boss beats him up and vows to inflict some torture on him by tying him up in a chair. Kai though has other ideas and manages somehow to get himself out of the situation, goes apeshit and murders his boss, the wife and some of his co-workers but not before slicing off part of the boss’ wife’s tongue with some garden shears. Nasty!!! Just as he’s about to kill off the young daughter, another co-worker walks in and Kai walks out.

Fast forward 10 years and Kai has fled to South Africa where he again works in a Chinese restaurant in Johannesburg for a married couple. He’s still the same despicable character as before and the boss’ wife hates him with a passion. He’s even prone to listening next door on the boss and his wife having sex whilst he relieves himself into the restaurant’s meat (which he then cooks to customers)! Gross!!!!!

Whilst out on an outing with the boss to secure cheap meat, they end up in a native village where some of the villagers have died from the Ebola virus. On the way back an argument ensues when Kai crashes the car into a tree whilst trying to avoid a herd of elephants. As Kai saunters off in a huff towards a nearby lake he chances upon a young native girl prone on the floor. Seizing an opportunity to have sex, he forces himself upon her. The girl starts to have convulsions and finally spits blood in his face before dying. Now Kai is infected with Ebola but the doctors find that he’s only a carrier and won’t get the full blown disease. It’s not too long before Kai’s violent tendencies flare up again and he murders the boss and his wife, carving and then serving them up as special hamburgers to the restaurant’s customers. When he finds the boss’ secret money stash he decides to go back home to Hong Kong where an Ebola outbreak starts to happen there. Hot on his tail is the daughter of the boss who narrowly survived Kai’s first murderous spree – now all grown up and the police.

I’d heard a lot about Ebola Syndrome during the past 5 years about its reputation and had avoided it just for that but recently I thought what the hell and gave it a go. It’s certainly one of the most gross out horrors I’ve ever seen but also one of the funniest (am I weird in saying that?).  The only thing I found very distressing about this movie was the graphic deaths of live animals such as Kai slicing up frogs to be used in a dish and also in the native village where we get to see some chickens being inhumanely killed (if you’re an animal lover I suggest you look away during these sequences) but if this doesn’t bother you one bit there’s a lot to interest any gorehound out there (including quite a gruesome autopsy on somebody’s face!). Anthony Wong is a joy to watch as Kai. Just the way he acts, his facial expressions and his behaviour in this movie had me in fits of laughter (except when he turned violent of course!). It looks like he was born to play the perverted loser Kai! The script isn’t really up to scratch to be perfectly honest but this movie has enough to keep it ticking over. Overall, Ebola Syndrome is a cult HK classic that any horror fan should check out.

Sadako’s Rating: 3 out of 5

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