Full disclosure, I am not a big fan of extremely violent movies. I believe the term is "Exploitation films" where, just like extreme music, the focus becomes less about creating a story, but more about what violent imagery and story line the director can come up with.
I do my best to not let violence distract me from what the story is about, since there are movies like Hostel, that achieves in raising awareness that there is a very dark and sick demand for violence in parts of society we choose to ignore. Such is proof, that recently, the news just brought into the light of a children abduction group, where children are abducted for something as cheap as 1,000 pesos per child, and that these children are raped by pedophiles on webcam.
And again, a Filipina has also been caught with her caucasian husband, streaming the torture and dismemberment of a child they picked up in the streets.
Yet again, more recently, a 16 year old girl was found dead in Cebu with parts of her face cleanly peeled off, along with her tongue, trachea and esophagus ripped off from her throat.
As much as I will not count Hostel as one of my favorite movies, it did discuss a very uncomfortable reality we live in. Violence is real, and we do not know when it will strike. I still reference that movie, especially in the light of recent events.
Trauma is a very violent version of Strangers in the Night. It is the stuff that can give you nightmares, and should be deemed X-Rated for the various scenes and sequences shown in the film.
The movie walks us through the creation of a psychopath family, that started when a boy was forced to watch and be a part of extreme brutality that I do not want to describe in any detail. Just think of how Winter Soldier was created, multiplied by a hundred. The movie also claims to be "inspired by true events."
However, at the core of this movie ... it still is a typical slasher flick, where the heroes make the dumbest choices, and the fact that they have worse aims than the entire Storm Trooper and Cobra batallion combined. It is very annoying, and unrealistic, especially since the psycho murderers have the skills of Liam Neeson in Taken and the durability of Jason in Friday the 13th. I wonder, why they did not just go all the way and gave them the Predator's stealth technology, and shoulder cannon?
For the biggest part of the movie, you will just find yourself aghast with the violent scenes (it makes I Spit in Your Grave like a cartoon show), and pissed off with the ineptitude of the main characters.
But within those feelings, I began to realize that, just like the main characters in the movie, a lot of us are in total denial of the existence of violence in this world. We like to cover the eyes and prance around the safety of our homes, totally oblivious.
The movie slips in this metaphor that the main characters were (mostly) lesbian females, who seemed to only be concerned with the most superficial things in life ... and cowardly men (the sheriffs), who allowed psychopaths to fester in their local community, until they finally suffered gruesome dismemberment.
You see, the only way to protect yourself from this kind of violence, is to accept the fact that you can be as violent as these psychopaths. The violent man can never be reasoned. There are no negotiations with him. There aren't even financial bribes to keep him at bay. The only language a violent man understands is a knife or a bullet through his violent heart.
In this day and age, it is important to always be a prepared. Such is the call of being a man; he has to be able to protect his family and friends from the violence of men. Being weak, and choosing to ignore the realities of this world, will make you a perfect victim for these violent men. That is what the movie is about.
I wish the movie did not go through those extremes to make its point, but I guess, it was a stylistic choice of the director. Either that, or just like most deathcore bands, he has no clue what he was doing, as long as its brutal.
I am kidding. The movie has very good lighting, and the editing never felt choppy, eventhough it has a lot of sequences that did not occur in a linear fashion. The flow and the flashbacks were very seamless, so it is fair to say, the director is perfectly aware of the story's pacing.
I DO NOT RECOMMEND this movie at all. Just like Cannibal Corpse, 8 out of 10 humans will MISUNDERSTAND the intent of the music, and would either think that violence is cool, or that this is a disgusting glorification of violence and deparavity.
However, if you go beyond the superficial aspects of the movie, you will get a wake up call to train yourself for violent situations, and perhaps find a reason to apply for a licensed firearm (recommended if you live in areas with weak law enforcement).