In Brief: An entertaining and politically incorrect, and sometimes violent, flick that pokes fun at extremists on the left and on the right.
The release of The Hunt was put off for six-months. Something about Donald Trump tweets and the use of the word “deplorables” by the movie’s characters. All kinds of political nonsense caused the delay.
It is the type of political correctness that the movie attacks with a vengeance.
The beauty of the movie is that the extremes of both sides of this country’s political aisle get slammed. Good for the writers. Plus, the slamming is wonderfully funny — but quite violent — satire.
The Hunt will be on my list of favorites at the end of the year.
If you’re overly politically sensitive then pass on this one and — um — “hunt” up a different movie. However, if you enjoy poking fun of the most politically sensitive among us, and don’t mind a fairly violent movie, do not miss The Hunt.
Glow’s Emmy-nominated Betty Gilpin stars. She’s one of a group of people who wake up somewhere in the woods and have no clue how they got there. All of the sudden gun fire erupts and they’re being picked off one at a time.
Gilpin’s Crystal is from Mississippi. The other victims are from other parts of the country. Like the others, someone slipped her a drug and she woke up finding herself in danger of being murdered. Her military experience has given her the skills to survive and she is determined to do so.
How she makes it through and the dialogue surrounding that survival provides the film’s entertainment. That and a great performance from Gilpin.
She has a total blast as the baddest of the bunch. There is a lot of talk of Gilpin’s Crystal joining Wonder Woman or Captain Marvel as the new breed of female action heroes. I wouldn’t go there. Gilpin is more like a 2020 version of Die Hard’s Bruce Willis.
Or you could say she marches through the movie like in total control like Schwarzenegger’s Terminator. Crystal is emotionless, relaxed and knows she’s smart enough to not be beaten. Ever.
Hilary Swank’s performance as the head of the movie’s villains has to be noted, too. She and the supporting cast that includes brief performances from Amy Madigan, Ike Barinholtz and Emma Roberts and others help make the movie a very good one.
She is — like Gilpin’s Crystal — very self-contained, confident and emotionless. It’s a nice piece of work that fits perfectly into a nice piece of satire.
What makes this movie watchable and not offensive is how writers Nick Cuse and Damon Lindelof (Lost) craft the screenplay. There are no sacred cows. Everyone gets skewered. Rich liberals have begun picking who they consider to be dangerous conservatives and are hunting them. They are Hilary Clinton’s deplorables.
The lines written for this group are hilarious. They chide each other mercilessly when they aren’t in lockstep with all that is politically correct. At the same time, they’re all cold-blooded killers who enjoy blowing these people away in clever and elaborate ways.
On the other side of the fence are the so-called deplorables. And except for Crystal, they are. Their lines, too, drip with ultra-conservative think and are perfectly timed for maximum laughs.
Then director Craig Zobel ties it all together. He doesn’t dawdle. Nothing in this movie is slow and nothing in the film is extraneous. It moves quickly and neatly to a laugh-filled conclusion and one that — along with Gilpin’s performance — will have us “hunting” for a sequel.
Director: Craig Zobel
Stars: Betty Gilpin, Hilary Swank, Craig Zobel, Nick Cuse, Damon Lindelof, Wayne Duvall, Ethan Suplee, Ike Barinholtz, Emma Roberts, Amy Madigan, Reed Birney, Steve Coulter, Dean J. West, Vince Pisani
Too much political correctness put this one on the shelf for an extra six-months. Not sure why. Those of you who are like me, and are totally tired of political correctness, this one was made for you. Give if a very friendly 5 on the Friday Flicks with Gary 0 to 5 scale.
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Gary Wolcott has been reviewing movies on radio, television and newspaper since 1990. He believes — and this is an estimate only — that he’s seen something close to 10,000 movies in his lifetime. Gary is a lifelong fan of films and catches a couple of hundred movies a year. He believes movies ought to be seen on the big screen and not on the small screen in your living room or family room. While he loves movies, he also says reviewing film can be a real sacrifice and that he sees many movies so you don’t have to.
He is one of KXL 101.1 FM’s film critics and joined the news staff in 2014. Gary is also the film critic for Tri-Cities, Washington’s Tri-City Herald.