Bringing you honest reviews of recent releases
Betty Gilpin – Crystal Creasey
Hilary Swank – Athena Stone
Ike Barinholtz – Staten Island (Moses)
Emma Roberts – Yoga Pants
Justin Hartley – Trucker (Shane)
Amy Madigan – Ma
Reed Birney – Pop
Ethan Suplee – Gary
Teri Wyble – Liberty
Wayne Duvall – Don
The Hunt is bloody gruesome. Literally. And the opening scene is what kicks off the murderous action; a group of complete strangers waking up in a gigantic forest, gagged and made to fight for their lives with weapons they acquire. Although this concept may echo the Saw movies, it works plot-wise with its ‘who will win, who will die?’ element. And there are one or two shocking deaths the producers don’t shy away from portraying. Be warned – there are VERY graphic images. Fans of gore-horror will love this.
Betty Gilpin who plays Crystal was not just perfect casting for her role, but the best actor above everybody else to be placed in this movie. Perhaps this is down to extremely limited screen time for the others, but either way she is hugely entertaining and embraces her character so well you’d think she actually was an Afghanistan War veteran. Her hilariously unhinged personality means she takes some ludicrous action against other people, with a mad cackle that pierces the air as she does so. She is utterly bonkers, and I loved every second of her presence.
The fake-or-not-fake location idea is decent, giving the viewer the chance to try figure out if where the characters are is real or not. The action takes place in a seemingly normal back-road small American town where everything is on edge, and anything could be a booby trap. Think Saw meets The Goonies as those who made it out of the forest navigate their way through the town, unable to trust anyone they meet or even the ground they walk on. No gleaming Hollywood-style set or props are needed during the beginning of this movie to create tension, it plays out naturally.
But is their location fake or real?..
There is something extremely tacky about The Hunt. I could sense that from the trailer; it has all the ingredients of a C-list flick you’d find in a department store bargain bin. It’s also not the first game of cat & mouse to be made into a movie, there are plenty of others with similar concepts out there. And it borrows its theme (and a few characters) from other films, including the finale stand-off between two leading people. It’s all stuff you’ve seen before. I got the feeling those involved with production only wanted to release it to quench their thirst for blood-spattered body parts, and a bit of fun. And although Gilpin is fantastic, even she can’t save this from being a cringeworthy flop.
Go in with no expectations and you shouldn’t be too disappointed.