Eaten Alive (1980) from Tuna

Eaten Alive (1980) AKA Mangiati vivi, is a cannibal horror film from Umberto Lenzi. It has many of the elements of the genre, including cannibalism, eating and slaughtering animals, a jungle version of wild kingdom, and lots of bare breasts. This one is unique however. Normally, there is some plot (more of a pretext really) to get people in amongst the cannibals, then the story centers around the cannibals. In this film, the cannibals are more of a sub-plot, or possibly the exploitation element to sell the film. The real story is a Jonestown clone. An American heiress goes to the jungle to find her sister who went to form a purification city with a cult leader. Not all of the cult members are happy there, as some realize the leader is a fake and a perv, but the city is surrounded by cannibals. That, plus the guards employed by the leader keeps most of them in line.


  • Agren shows breasts after being painted gold as part of a purification ceremony.
  • Senatore shows breasts frequently, and has a full frontal near the end of the film.
  • Me Me Lai (Au Pair Girls) does an extended sex scene with full frontal. Her husband has committed suicide. After his cremation, she has public sex with both of his brothers to purify and cleanse her of the marriage. (Hey, I will believe anything as long as it yields naked women).
DVD not available in Region 1
Along the way, Janet Agren, the rescuing sister, hires Vietnam deserter Robert Kerman as a guide. They succeed in finding sister Paola Senatore, but escaping proves to be the real challenge.

As near as I can tell, it can only be purchased on Region 2 DVD in the UK, although it had a Laser Disk release in the US.  

The Critics Vote

  • no major reviews online

The People Vote ...

IMDb guideline: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence, about like three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, about like two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, about like two stars from the critics. Films under five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film, equivalent to about one and a half stars from the critics or less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Based on this description, this film is a C+. I found the plot a little more engaging than the usual cannibal film.

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