Hobo with a Shotgun (Review)

(5/06/11; Action)
Rutger Hauer, Gregory Smith, Molly Dunsworth, Brian Downey, Robb Wells
SCR: John Davies
DIR: Jason Eisener
MPAA: Unrated
1 hour 25 mins

A homeless man (Hauer) wanders into the most depraved city on Earth and does the right thing, vigilante style. Blood-soaked exploitation flick was the second feature hatched from a fake trailer (following 2010’s Machete), and hiring legendary B-movie tough guy Hauer was a good start.

But man, you’d have to go back to the early days of Troma to find a movie this nihilistic and gleefully violent. And when we’re talking about eviscerations, chest carvings, gang beheadings, smashing bare feet with hammers, torching children and forcing the hobo to eat glass (and that’s just the first half), you know this ain’t a movie for the entire family, unless we’re talking about the Manson family.

I know there’s an audience for this stuff but there’s a difference between a movie savvy enough to know what it’s mocking and one that’s too dumb to know the difference. Minor props go to director Eisener for framing his movie with credit sequences that seem out of another time. They are the only moments of wit on display in the whole unpleasant deal.

One thing is certain: Hauer needs some better gigs. Even at 67, the guy’s still got it. (Magnolia)


Author: Dennis Willis

Dennis Willis is an award-winning producer, TV host, producer, director, editor (he preferred Avid until a torrid affair with Adobe Premiere, and the rest is history), author and film critic (print and radio). Dennis produced and hosted the TV programs Reel Life, FilmTrip, Soundwaves (1983-2008) and produces the annual Soundwaves Xmas program. He is currently the film critic on KGO Radio in San Francisco, and a member of both the San Francisco Film Critics Circle and the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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