Movie Review: ‘Human Zoo’

Review by Lisa Payne

Contestants are recruited for a reality show, Solitary Confinement. The premise is they are filmed 24/7 for an audience on the internet with no interaction with each other or anyone else.

We see the interviews, and the variety of reasons people want to participate in the show. Those who are chosen are given instructions and rules.

They are led to individual windowless rooms with no doors bathed in 24-hour light. They are given food and water once a day. What follows is the slow descent into madness and the various forms it takes.

Following the rules gives the contestants no relief from their situation. To me, they were the blonde who screams, the brunette who screams louder, the man who rocks in a corner, etc.

As it becomes clear that this is not a game and there is no relief, Human Zoo becomes an endurance test for the audience as much as the contestants. It felt like a grief cycle – anger, denial, bargaining, depression, then finally acceptance.

The score is like white noise with varying pitches and tones of sound. It is what I’d expect to hear in my head if I was losing my mind.

The cost of reality-show fame is too high. Constant scrutiny with no feedback, spotlight glaring and only your own judgement and sanity to guide you.

Human Zoo is a mind-fuck. Human Zoo premieres on digital/DVD May 5 from Wild Eye Releasing.

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