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Their sentences were later commuted to life in prison when the death penalty was abolished in 1972. Snuff was a product of Monarch Releasing Corporation and had been filmed in Argentina in 1971 as Slaughter, a film about bad girls, motorcycles, and bad guys.Reinstatement of the death penalty in 1977 did not affect the revised sentences as them (or any of the other inmates whose death sentences had been commuted to life during the “no death penalty” phase) to the original penalty was deemed “cruel and unusual.” Manson and his group are still in prison. Slaughter was so ineptly made as to be unreleasable.Propitiously, the Japanese took this time to release ”Guinea Pig Two: The Making of Guinea Pig One,” revealing the technical sleight of hand in all its bone-cracking glory.After viewing this film, the FBI backed off and dropped the investigation.All the fretting about it aside, not so much as one snuff film has been found. (Al Goldstein, publisher of Screw magazine, has a standing offer of for anyone who can come up with a commercially sold snuff film. No one has yet laid claim to it.) It’s not enough to fear there might be one snuff film out there; the belief runs strong that a large creation and distribution network is in operation, with children and young people routinely kidnapped then killed while the cameras roll to meet demand and the films of same circulated through this underground to connoisseurs of the genre.Time and again, what is originally decried in the press as a film of a murder turns out, upon further investigation, to be a fake. The prurience of human nature being what it is, it’s not unreasonable to assume if the films existed, there would be those willing to pay to have them.Only the most deranged would consider preserving for a jury a perfect video record of a crime he could go to the executioner for.

Snuff films depict the killing of a human being — a human sacrifice (without the aid of special effects or other trickery) perpetuated for the medium of film and circulated amongst a jaded few for the purpose of entertainment. Some will further claim that a profit motive must exist, that the final product has to be offered for sale (as opposed to being passed around without charge within a select circle, or remaining solely in the possession of its maker). It’s the recording of the death itself which constitutes the “snuff” in snuff films, not who makes a buck out of it. (At this point the interviewee acknowledged he hadn’t actually seen the film himself but was instead relating a story he’d heard.) From this fanciful beginning, the term “snuff” came to be used to identify films of this nature.

I, uh, you know — SANDERS: Which snuff movie do you know about? It’s no wonder either; the special effects are very cleverly executed.

ANON: I just know like a young chick maybe about 27, short hair… Flower of Flesh and Blood is the episode which stirs much of the controversy.

Such is the case with the murders committed by Charles Ng and Leonard Lake and with those perpetuated by Paul Bernardo (aka Paul Teale) and Karla Homolka.

For both of those murderous pairings, videotape of the victims featured prominently, both in the investigations and at trial.

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