By Friday, March 20th, Universal shall have released this film to be seen at home. Take a couple pain killers and watch it.
I saw this film the day before all theatres were closed in Marion County. I went with a dear friend, Linda Pence, and she brought a spray to wipe down our seats. There were only four other people in attendance, so we think we will survive.
As for the film, we loved it for multiple reasons. While it was both vulgar and violent beyond description, Director Craig Zobel uniquely blended comedy with the gut-wrenching brutality.
Make no mistake that the underlying story line was confusing. The movie centers on 12 strangers who wake up in a field with their mouths gagged. They don’t know where they are or how they got there.
However, it soon becomes evident that a group a demented political assassins are hunting them for sport. As many die in the functional equivalent of an outdoor torture chamber, one woman known as Crystal escapes to seek vengeance.
Betty Gilpin gives a memorable performance as Crystal, a smirking, demonic victim who embraces the motto, “kill or be killed.” You will never forget her battle with two villains known as Ma and Pa (Amy Madigan and Reed Birney) who appeared to manage a rural grocery store.
Yet, what elevates this film from the cinematic trash bin for many was its conclusion involving one of the great female fights in movie history. Crystal uses her clever ingenuity to find Athena, played by Oscar winner Hilary Swank, the leader of the rogue killers. The two engage in poetic fisticuffs that makes you feel that you are watching two ballet dancers fighting to see who gets to be “queen” of the show.
Finally, this film was a reflection of the political barbarity that has engulfed our country, Our President, along with many of his allies, have caustically dismissed many in our country as deplorables, a phrase used in this movie. As a result, fanatics hating Jews, immigrants and black Americans have responded with a violent prejudice that resembles the slaughter taking place in The Hunt.
Given the Corona Virus that has invaded our country, isn’t it time that all Americans, whether white or black, gay or straight, an immigrant or a natural citizen unite with a dedication to save the country we love. While we can’t go to restaurants, bars, watch sports or movies in theatres, we can metaphorically join hands and again sing along with Woody Guthrie (1944) and Pete Seeger (1964):
“This land is your land,
This land is my land,
From California to the New York island.
From the redwood forests,
To the gulf stream waters.
This land was made for you and me.”