CLASSICS OF CINEMA
SS EXPERIMENT CAMP
In these ever-so-liberal times, when, according to The Daily
Mail, the BBFC are willing to pass any old fucking smut for to
sell on the Digital DVD or whatever, when a fella can walk
into a high street store and pick up Cannibal Holocaust
(albeit shorn of five minutes or so), when that new Michael
Winterbottom about real sexing and also some songs from The
Franz Ferdinand’s gets flung into theatres with not a second
trimmed from its gooey (w)hole, there are precious few flicks
that, for us hobbit types over in the United UK, have the air
of genuine notoriety about them.
It’s a far motherfucking cry from the time when The Duke
crossed fields and thickets instead of taking the main road
home from school, for fear of The Filth discovering the copy
of Zombie Flesh Eaters tucked into my school-bag.
There are a few titles, though, a few leftovers from that
Video Nasties hoopla that still don’t look like they’ll ever
see the legal side of a video-store checkout.
Sergio Garrone’s 1976 Lager SSadis Kastrat Kommandantur,
better known as SS Experiment Camp, is most likely one of
those flicks. Mind you, folks said that about Cannibal
Holocaust once upon a time.
What shocked The Duke fuckless, though, upon finally, via
some terrorist organizations and a lung or two that I
offered by way of trade, getting hold of a copy of this, the
grubbiest of the grubby, is that this is probably the most
ridiculous fucking thing I have ever in my life even once
set eyes on.
If it wasn’t for the rather grating fact that, y’know, shit
like this right here completely trivializes the holocaust,
makes a mockery of the genuine slaughter of millions, if it
wasn’t for details like that, this would probably be one of
my favorite films. Sometimes flicks are just so inspired in
their absolute ineptitude that you can’t do a damn thing but
love them. Most bad flicks just bore you to tears, but the
ones to look out for, those are the ones where every inane
line spouted from the face-flaps of the cast is to be
cherished and held to your bosom for all ever.
It’s deplorable trash, is what this is. But just you try not
to be stunned and utterly awed by the levels of
tastelessness and ignorance scaled herein.
SS Experiment Camp opens with a scene wherein a young woman
is strapped, totally naked, into some sort of electric chair-
type device. What happens is that Hardened Lesbian Guard
keeps telling her to say shit over and over about “I swear
allegiance to the supreme ruler, our fuehrer”. The victim is
having none of this, and eventually she’s killed right there.
Incidentally, this nudity thing is a recurring motif in SS
Experiment Camp, so you might wanna note it down for some
future studies and so on. Like in Strike, when Sergei
Eisenstein kept having circles all over the damn place.
Sergio Garrone doesn’t want circles. He wants naked women.
That’s his motif. Nakeds.
The body gets put into an incinerator, whereby some
superimposed flames flap about and then she does this really
bizarre silent-movie-meets-Ringu dance of some sort.
Meanwhile, a buncha young muscular fellas, Nazi Fucks in
case you were wondering, are getting acquainted with one
another, in a non-sexual manner, in their own section of the
camp. These scenes with the guards are like scenes from some
National Lampoon campus caper of some sort, complete with
comedy moustaches and “zany” score. You half expect John
Belushi to wander in, trousers at his knees, and do a big
fucking fart. You’d laugh your hole off.
As a new batch of prisoners are being brought in for to
shower in soft-focus (interestingly, these prisoners are
never referred to as being Jewish, but rather “political
enemies” or some such), the fellas debate the “mission”
they've been brought here for.
“I hope it’s a mission of a sexual nature” muses Hunky Nazi.
What happens next is we get the first chance to let our jaws
smack the motherfucking carpet on account of the utter
feckless, tasteless bravado on display. Unbelievably, it
turns out one of the prisoners, who let’s not forget is
being brought here against her will to be strapped to
electric chairs and also to have sex for “experiments”,
develops a crush on one of the Nazi’s, a fella called
Helmet, and so a fucking stunningly insensitive love-story
gets flung into the mix.
Really, if someone told you this shit you wouldn’t believe
them. You’d laugh in their faces. Shut your mouth, you’d
say. What kind of shit is this you want me to believe,
You can believe it though, since look, I’m telling you all
Nazi Colonel seems to be having a bit of a dilemma in his
own quarters. We know something’s wrong, since he's sitting
by the fire staring intensely at the glass of wine in his
grip. Maybe a fly flew into it, and he’s pissed off, like
when you get a cup of coffee and set it on the floor and
then two seconds later you lift it and find a fucking
bluebottle landed in it, and you have to pour the whole damn
thing out. Maybe it was expensive wine, and he’s pissed as
Via a flashback, we see that the cause of Nazi Colonel’s
staring and gripping ever tighter is because of one time
when they were raiding the ghettos, and there’s a girl in
one of the houses. Being a Nazi Fuck, he thinks nothing of
forcing himself on her sexually. We see it getting rather
intense, and then it cuts back to the fireside and the
What The Duke was thinking was that maybe he’s suffering
some serious guilt from his actions, questioning just what
kind of “New World” this regime can bring, anyhow, when it’s
reduced folks like him, with his expensive wine and nice
fireplace, to a barbaric murdering demon?
Still, it doesn’t stop him going along to help Hardened
Lesbian Guard discuss “studding” and so on, other sexual
As is the wont of these Naziploitation flicks, there’s a
brothel involved, since let’s face it, Salon Kitty made a
lot of the green back in the day. What happens is a couple
prisoners are taken to this brothel, and are enlisted for to
keep up the morale of the soldiers by doing things like
sexing with them. “Skinny bitches, aren’t they?” observes
Next thing anyone knows, Nazi Colonel’s in the middle of a
meeting with a bearded type, who we soon learn is a doctor,
a Jewish man who changed his identity to escape these
fucking bastards, but they rumbled him. Nazi Colonel asks
him all about some “transplant” of some sort. Can it be
done? I don’t care if it’s dangerous, man. So on and so
I thought for a second that maybe it was going to get all
philosophical, that maybe the plot would develop along the
lines of Nazi Colonel gets a brain transplant because he
can't live with the guilt and so on. Something hi-tech like
that. Some “experiment” of some sort.
I didn’t have even a damn second for to ponder it, though,
since Hardened Lesbian Guard has taken one of the feisty
prisoners for to have a sex with. Another “experiment.”
Jaw dropping moment #346 – As the prisoner stands outside
the room, post-“experiment”, with about a dozen other girls
waiting to go in for some of the same “experiments”, she
sighs and says about how great a time these girls are in
for. How amazing these experiments are. Gee, I’m sure glad
these Nazi Fucks kidnapped me since this sexing is something
else. “It’s incredible. You’ll see.” Those kindsa
Jaw dropping moment #347 – A little later, the same prisoner
is sitting having some toast in the camp. “I’d almost
forgotten what marmalade tasted like”, she says. “If they
keep on treating us like this, they get my vote.”
What’s a fella to do but shake his motherfucking head in
disbelief? Did she really just say that? Who the fuck wrote
this? What kind of sheer fucking moronic nonsense is this,
“They get my vote.” Fucking hell, man.
Anyhow, Helmet, ie the Nazi Love Interest is obviously a bit
unsure about it all. To be honest, he looks like the kinda
fella who might take a rifle into the barracks and blow the
shit out of these motherfuckers at the film’s close. Maybe
he’ll even get shot himself, and the film ends like as if
the tape just snapped in the machine. You just get that idea
from looking at him.
He’s having to listen to Nazi Hunk yack on about all these
beautiful women he’s getting to sex with, in the name of
“experiments.” “The idea of banging a girl” he shares, “Even
in an experiment, really turns me on.”
Helmet obviously takes offence to this statement, for some
reason or other. “Every time you open your mouth you talk
shit”, he says. All the other Nazi Fucks find this statement
hilarious. Not Nazi Hunk, though. If anything, he’s
downright offended by it. “I didn’t like your remark about
shit”, he makes clear.
Around this time, even though there were only about 29
minutes gone, I was beginning to question the legitimacy of
all these “experiments”. What seemed to be happening was
that folks were just having lots of soft-focus sexing. I
didn’t see much scientific worth in it all, to be honest.
Garrone, however, is one goose-step ahead. Just as these
doubts regarding the “experiments” were beginning to form,
he presents a fella sitting in a big tank of water. Not only
this, but there are test-tubes bubbling about the place, and
even those things from the future that have the two prongs
and the lightening going up the middle. It’s scientific as
The fella in the tank gets to have some sex with a young
lady prisoner, and then two of his Nazi Fuck peers come in
for to do the same, with a couple other prisoners. One girl
seems a bit unmoved by it all, but the rest are having a
whale of a time. “For this, you didn’t need to drug me”
purrs one of them.
Fucking hell, man. Just fucking hell, is all.
The girl who “refused to co-operate”, however, soon learns
the price of such thoughtless frigidity. She gets put in the
big water tank, the water turned to boiling, then back
rapidly to ice-cold, until she’s frozen, with icicles
hanging from her and stuff. Bald Nazi laughs heartily at
this. “Before she was only frigid”, he quips. “Now she’s
freezing!” Ha ha, he says. Ha ha ha. He’s laughing, is the
Garrone was obviously wary about maybe folks would think he
just was just cashing in on the success of Salon Kitty, and
that really, something like SS Experiment Camp should be the
last thing anyone anywhere should want to spend a year (or a
week, most likely) crafting. As if to counter the inevitable
arguments about “You really are a fucking mornic little
shit”, he throws in a few hefty scenes wherein Hardened
Lesbian Guard and The Doctor have chats about “Heretical
theory” and all sorts of intellectual concerns. All kinds of
ideological thoughts get a going-over, all sorts of
Keeping up the philosophical end of things, Nazi Colonel
invites Helmet over to his quarters for a bit of the old
philosophizing. He wants to wax philosophical is all. Come
philosophize with me, Helmet. Pointing to the fire, he notes
that “Fire represents purity. And right now, also warmth.”
Next thing Helmet knows, though, this philosophizing is
revealed as a heinous motherfucking sham, since Nazi Guard
just wants to drug him and get him to have a sex or two with
three prisoners. Nazi Guard looks on as all manner of
bumping, thrusting, oohing and so on unfolds before him. By
way of unbearable fucking poignancy, however, Helmet’s
prisoner lover, Muriel, is telling her friends how much she
If only she knew, man. Not only does that Helmet
motherfucker wanna be a member of The Nazi Party and such,
but there he is getting it on with three soft-focus nakeds.
It’s enough to make a man weep for a fortnight.
Over at the brothel, a bunch of the young Nazi Fucks and
Bald Nazi are getting pissed and having sexes and doing
comedy burps. Bald Nazi, however, spies a young girl hiding
under the stairs. Perturbed by her lack of interest in his
oafish, stinking, balding, mustachioed advances, he forces
her into some sex with him. “What are you, some kind of
virgin?”, he gasps, as if the thought were unthinkable.
This girl, in fact, is a fantastic actress. She has the look
of a silent movie star about her, like she should have been
in Greed or Sunrise or some shit, instead of this pish. Her
eyes are awash with grief, a mourning of her own innocence.
It’s really rather beautiful.
Of course, it’s not long before she’s attacking Bald Nazi
with a pair of scissors, and he’s taking her outside and
hanging her upside down from a post, whilst the others look
This image is probably one of the most famous in
exploitation cinema, certainly here in the United UK.
A bit of anthropological context, motherfucker;
Back in the day, being the day just after video-cassettes
were invented, folks had a lot to choose from when they took
a trip down the old VHS-hole. A multitude of garish sleeves
donned the shelves, things like Faces Of Death and Driller
Killer, things with covers that promised the kindsa carnage
no film could ever live up to, even if it was directed by
Lucio Motherfucking Fulci. What the distributors of these
flicks had to do, was to make sure their cover stood out
against such fierce competition.
Go Video, the folks responsible for getting SS Experiment
Camp into the hands of a filthy public, however, weren’t
gonna settle for luck. Not only did they make sure the naked
woman hanging upside down filled the cover (with arms
outstretched so it looked like she was crucified, also), but
they took out full-page ad’s in magazines, making sure that
everyone with even the slightest interest in those
gargantuan fucking machines below the telly would now about
this flick about the “experiments”.
Interestingly, some magazines refused to carry the ad unless
a bra was painted over the upside down woman’s breasts.
Any the hell way, what occurs is that Helmet realizes he’ll
soon be sent off to some other post of some kind, and goes
to talk to Nazi Colonel. He can’t bear to be separated from
Muriel, is what, and if only there was some way he could
prolong his stay here.
Nazi Colonel wants to stroke his chin and stuff like that,
on account of he has a plan, don’t you know? What it is, he
explains, is that there’s an “experiment” lined up, a very
important one, and if only somebody would participate, then
most likely they’d be here for fuck knows how long.
“Take me, sir!” implores young Helmet, and before we know
what the hell’s going on, he’s lying on a bed in the
“experiment” room, right next to Nazi Colonel, except Nazi
Colonel is on a different bed, obviously. I mean come the
hell on, these are Nazi Fuck’s after all, and whilst it’s ok
for lesbians to have as many sexes as they please, men are
obviously much hairier, and therefore less pleasing to the
I presumed that what would happen is that maybe Helmet’s
brain would be swapped with Nazi Colonel, and that Nazi
Colonel finds himself with a clean slate, and so goes off
into the world ready to sully his soul afresh. Helmet, I was
guessing, would be driven insane by the unfounded emotions
he now possessed, and would probably go apeshit with an
I would be, in the words of Cecil B. DeMille, “wrong as all
What happened back in the flashback, y’see, the one that got
Nazi Colonel so upset a while back with the wine and the
fire and the shadows on the wall, was that the lady he was
busy raping decided to give him some oral pleasure. Next
thing anyone knows, though, there she is, with his nuts in
her mouth, bitten to blazes right off his body.
He wasn’t feeling guilty at all. He wants some new
testicles, is what the fuck’s wrong with him.
Helmet gets his testicles removed in seriously cringe-
inducing, lingering close-up, and then it’s ages later, like
six months or some shit, and Nazi Colonel’s just preparing
to try them out.
Luckily for him, the “experiment” was “a complete success,
Nazi Colonel tries chatting up some middle-aged lady in the
brothel, maybe with some of that philosophy of his all about
the fire and all, but he needn’t bother his stinking arse.
“You’re trying to say you want to fuck?”, she deduces. Next
thing he knows, she’s lying on his bed, admiring the fine
coverings. “You’ll be able to enjoy it more often if you
wish”, purrs Nazi Colonel.
He’s a little quick off the mark there, however. He’s
counting his chickens before his eggs or whatever. He’s
jumping his guns like nobodies business.
Helmet, y’see, has just met up with Muriel after months
apart. They’re so happy to see each other that they barely
have time to philosophize before the clothes are flung the
hell across the floor in a suggestive manner. He’s on top,
and he wants to do some kissing and so on, but something’s
wrong. He’s pushing and panting, and to be honest, Muriel’s
getting a little unnerved. “What the matter with me!”
screams Helmet. “I’m not able to make love to you!”
“It happens sometimes”, consoles his love, but no,
something's amiss. Something definitely isn’t right. Oh my
God, could it have something to do with those motherfucking
It doesn’t take much longer for Helmet to realize that he
doesn’t have any bollocks anymore. To be honest, I think if
it was me, I think I’d be pretty sure the moment I opened my
eyes after the “experiment” that holy shit, man, my
testicles have gone!
Helmet’s got too much on his mind, though, what with the
love and the philosophy. When he discovers that all that
pushing and so on isn’t gonna be any use, that he has no
testicles any more, the first thing he wants to do is grab a
rifle and run the hell over to that Nazi Colonel son of a
“What have you done with my balls!?” he demands.
“I know what I did was very bad”, says Nazi Colonel, playing
the old understatement card as ever, trying for the subtlety
and so on. You can shove your subtlety up your hole,
however. Helmet’s not accepting that.
Anyway, what happens is that it ends pretty soon after all
that. I don’t want to spoil anything, so I’ve been
deliberately light on plot details. I hope you understand. I
just don’t want to ruin it for you.
SS Experiment Camp is an utterly wretched film, a morally
indefensible slab of fucking garbage, a woefully inept,
inhumane and offensive blotch on the scrotum of culture. The
truth, though, if, indeed, you can handle it, is that I was
glued to the screen.
I couldn’t sleep at night, however, if I thought you might
assume The Duke to be in support of this truck. But I’ll be
damned if that unbridled lack of concern for cinematic
competence or human devastation isn’t terrifyingly hypnotic.
And I’ve still got Ilsa – She Wolf Of The SS to get through.
Fucking sweet Hell, man.
Drop The Duke A Line