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The Birth Of A New Horror Icon in a Mediocre Film?

  • Aug 24, 2010
Rating:
+2
No other film has received such mixed reviews more than “HATCHET” (2007) among my friends. Most of them, hated this film, while lately, it has began to achieve a minor cult following. “Hatchet” is the type of film that definitely depends on what you are looking for in a movie experience. I think a film requires somewhat of an acquired taste, but one thing, I have to say it is a homage to the 80’s “slasher” flicks and NOT to be taken seriously.

Mardi Gras, New Orleans: two friends, Marcus (Deon Richmond) and Ben (Joel David Moore) are gallivanting around the town, drinking and scoping out the sights (I mean half naked women). Ben becomes insistent on taking a haunted swamp tour. They come across a pretty but moody young local woman named Marybeth (Tamara Feldman) who is actually looking for her father and her brother who had disappeared in this same swamp some nights ago. When the boat hit’s a boulder and sinks, the group is forced to walk back to the city. Little do they know that a monstrous killer called Victor Crowley (Kane Hodder) is hot on their trail and they must fight their way to survive.

           

          

Adam Green’s low-budget movie is an attempt to return to the days of Jason, Madman, Leatherface, Freddy Krueger because it is well-known that iconic killers can make such a low-budget film shine. There are two ways to approach this film. Take it as a humorous venture into the world of slasher flicks, much like you should see “Eight Legged Freaks” and ignore whatever faults it has. Another way, is to envision the film as something where there is no ambition in its casting, it follows the same formulaic elements and criticize its measly budget. But the question has to be, did the film present a new successful figure in the books of “slashing” villains?

Well, Victor Crowley is a blend of Jason Voorheese and Freddy Krueger, mixed in with Leatherface and Madman. The film would owe a lot of royalties to other iconic slasher films. Crowley just won’t die, no matter how many times you stab him, shoot him or burn him. Crowley just keeps on going and revels on the murder that he has been doing. I would like to see him take on Jason. “Victor vs. Jason” anyone? (oh no, did I just pitch an idea?)

      

       The Birth Of A New Horror Icon in a Mediocre Film?

The film doesn’t bring anything new to the horror genre and has a very “exaggerated” execution and it does it intentionally. Director/writer Adam Green knew that he had to make fun of his own creation. The characters are a vacationing couple, two friends looking for a good time, a couple of air headed bimbos, a pervert and a young woman on a mission led by an Asian man. The characters themselves seemed very unlikable, and Green meant it to be this way. The script is too hollow and the dialogue can get laughable if you don’t see that it was meant to be this way. “Janey’s got a gun”, a statue masturbating, and the “quippy” attempts at humor by Deon Richmond and Perry Chen can either be annoying or amusing. The proceedings do seem pointless a lot of times.

Now, the film does have some inventive “kill” sequences. The blood and gore are done “old-school” way; no CGI or special effects--the film utilizes the use of prosthetics and a lot of gooey red ink. Japanese splatter horror elements are sometimes used on some scenes to again make fun of itself. Turning one’s head 180 degrees or ripping the arms out of their sockets may not be original but it is fun to watch. Yes, if you are looking for an abundance of blood and gore, then this film will satisfy--just don’t think it will be horrifying, it will for the most part, feel a little comedic.

“Hatchet” is a actually more a cheesy attempt on comedy than a horror film. I do accept the fact that the film is making fun of itself, but the characters are just plain bad that they’re bad. I do try to see it as a homage and all, but I just can’t say for sure just what the filmmakers wanted to do. It’s not really funny, but funny in a way that it is silly. It isn’t scary, the gore effects while well-done doesn‘t feel unnerving. To its credit, I did laugh out loud at some scenes and the film does have a good amount of nudity. Kane Hodder is both amusing and imposing as the killer. I do think Adam Green probably loved his slasher flicks so much that he wanted to relive them. I’m not exactly sure what Green expected from his viewers.
Does it feel like I’m confused? I am. Maybe that is what Adam Green wanted, a audience full of mixed reactions, as a result of his mixed direction. I’ll take “JASON X” over this.

RENTAL [2 ½ Stars]




                       
 
 
 
 
The Birth Of A New Horror Icon in a Mediocre Film? The Birth Of A New Horror Icon in a Mediocre Film? The Birth Of A New Horror Icon in a Mediocre Film? The Birth Of A New Horror Icon in a Mediocre Film?

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September 01, 2010
Nice review, William. I loved "Eight Legged Freaks," lol! I thought it was so funny, lol. This is one I'm curious to see even though the ratings are all over the place.
September 02, 2010
well, this had the majority of my friends hating the movie, but there were some who appreciated it. See it when you feel like you need to see something a little silly LOL!
September 03, 2010
(laughs) Ok. I will keep that in mind. :)
 
August 27, 2010
Did you get Parry Shen in 2 pix just for me, or was it purely accidental? I liked him and Mercedes McNab in this. They cracked me up. She was several levels above the type of chick who's usually cast in these roles. And I loved JASON X. What a surprisingly funny take on a tired slasher flick.
August 27, 2010
nope, I did it just for you, Karen. ;) I re-watched this in the hopes that it'll grow on me, but I dunno, I guess it really wasn't my thing. Jason X was pure guilty pleasure for me! It was funny and those kill scenes were so entertaining LOL!
August 27, 2010
I knew it, I knew it!
August 31, 2010
Parry Shen is cool, this movie is not! LOL! hear that, Dave?
September 02, 2010
I'm sort of with you there. =0
 
August 26, 2010
"Jason X"? Really? That was one of the worst horror flicks I've seen in the past ten years.
August 26, 2010
yep, and that was better than this one IMHO. LOL! it was bad but so much fun LOL!
August 26, 2010
I gave "Jason X" half of a star. LOL! I guess this one definitely isn't for me.
August 27, 2010
I thought JASON X was hilarious. What on earth do you do wiyh a tired old formula like that? Take it to outer space of course!
August 27, 2010
yup...loved those kill scenes. LOL
August 27, 2010
But then it just becomes an even stupider cliche. They could have at least added a deranged space monkey.
August 31, 2010
hm...deranged space monkey LOL!
September 01, 2010
Well, yeah, don't you remember all those cartoons and TV shows, where when the ratings got low, they'd send the characters to space and they'd have a little alien monkey for a pet?
September 01, 2010
yup...I liked those. Those can be funny...LOL!
September 01, 2010
I recall they did that with the "Josie and the Pussycats" cartoon and also with the "Lost in Space" movie among others. I think one of the "Star Trek" episodes fell into that hole too.
September 01, 2010
I dimly remember the JATP but the Lost in Space ones were pretty memorable for me. Don't think I ever saw the one in Star Trek....
 
August 25, 2010
Great review man, I liked this one more as I watched it again. Still not sure how I would rate it. Any way WP excellent review as always, I read this before on Amazon right?
August 27, 2010
aye.
 
1
More Hatchet reviews
review by . January 28, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
***1/2 out of ****    "Hatchet" belongs to a long list of movies where a giant, hulking humanoid monster pops out of nowhere and starts killing people. In this case, that monster is a disfigured mutant named Victor Crowley (Kane Hodder); and those people are an unlikely bunch that take a New Orleans swamp tour by boat, get stranded when it hits rocks and sinks, make way to land, and sooner or later, stare Victor Crowley in the face. You need not know much about this lot; other …
review by . February 08, 2008
posted in Movie Hype
This film takes place in New Orleans around mardi gras time... an assortment of folks end up on a swamp tour of death, entering the domain of "hatchet," a deformed killer who will ruthlessly slash and dismember his victims. The cast do a decent job within what they had to work with in this gory, unoriginal tale. The film is relatively short and the plot is focused in the 2nd half on who can escape the swamp before being grotesquely slain by the killer. There isn't really that much in the way of …
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William ()
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About this movie

Wiki

  • Hatchet
  • Opened September 7, 2007 | Runtime:1 hr. 22 min.
  • R
    strong bloody violence, sexual content, nudity and language
  • A group of tourists on a haunted swamp tour find one of the horrific local legends to be true. They try to escape alive--and with all of their pieces.
  • Cast: Joel David Moore, Tamara Feldman, Deon Richmond, Mercedes McNab, Joleigh Fioreavanti
  • Director: Adam Green
  • Genres: Slasher FilmHorror
  • Poster art for "Hatchet."
  • view wiki
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