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Customer Review

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yes, it's gory -- and there's nothing wrong with that, 18 Sept. 2006
This review is from: Hills Have Eyes [DVD] [2006] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] (DVD)
Do you enjoy watching a typical family being hunted down, killed, and at least partially eaten? Does your heart go all a-flutter at the sight of a giant axe being buried in someone's head? Do you get weak in the knees when some horribly mutated human monster flashes his viscous orbital sockets at you? Do you wake up each and every morning chanting Gore Gore Gore? If you answered Yes to any of these questions, you'll take evil delight in this remake of Wes Craven's classic The Hills Have Eyes.

I have to admit that, at least for me, the shine of these mutant-led massacre films has pretty much worn off. There's really nothing new here at all. It's really just a question of how gory the director will make it. It's not like the film is going to draw you into a juicy story, as that story consists of nothing more than a family being thrown out in the desert on some pretense and having to fight for their lives against mutant freaks. There isn't even any mystery as to who the monsters are or how they got that way, as that's made pretty clear from the very start.

As for all the gore, it's really quite exceptional, especially in this uncut version. When a guy blows his head off with a shotgun, he really blows his head off with a shotgun. All of the bullets that hit their mark do all kinds of damage. Still, there's really nothing like a good axe blow to the skull, and the director seems to really get off on that sort of thing as he gives us plenty of it. I could complain about the whole lack of brain oozing in conjunction with all the Bunyan Blues being whacked out, but at least there's plenty of blood. While this isn't the goriest movie I've ever seen - not even close, really - it's definitely up there in the upper echelon of gruesome motion pictures. The special effects aim high and hit the mark, as well; the mutated human degenerates cover a wide spectrum of radiation-induced ooziness, deformity, and general ugliness.

The cast is quite good, as well. Lost's Emilie De Ravin, who must by now have trouble convincing anyone to take even a short trip with her anywhere, is the most familiar face in the bunch - her screaming could use a little work, but she may have just found herself all screamed out after all the indignities and suffering she had to endure over the course of this film. Aaron Stanford successfully moves beyond his general dweebiness to make a man out of his less than macho character, while young Bobby (Dan Byrd) never lets himself fall prey to the stereotype of the teenaged hero wannabe.

If you're going to make a completely unnecessary remake, you'd better do it right - and that is just what happened here. Just take a look at some of the critical reviews, decrying the bloodlust fueling such degenerate movies as this, even going as far as to call the moviemakers "ghouls" feeding on the blood money of viewers who will supposedly go out and do violent things to one another after the end credits roll. As for reports of some viewers walking out on the film due to the level of violence - I don't get that at all. Uh, did they walk into the wrong cinema or something? It's not like The Hills Have Eyes was advertised as some sweeping romantic epic. And I just don't think there's an outrageous level of violence here in the first place. We spend a lot of time with an annoying family before the fun even begins. And the rape scene? Extremely tame, so much so that I wasn't completely sure it was actually a rape scene. I also thought the director held back quite a bit on the whole cannibalism thing. Really, as a hardcore horror fan, I find it amusing that some people consider this a shocking, ultra-violent film. Those folks really don't know what they're missing.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 6 Jan 2009 22:00:04 GMT
John Rose says:
Hello,I agree with you entirely about this film.You covered most of it,but i think the director lost the plot a few times concerning the reality of the violence.Could'nt he take some, the hero,had his fingers chopped off by the mad axeman & still managed to win.And then he fought the rapist (who was stabbed in the leg) hit him around 4 times in the face with the butt of the shot gun (enough to kill a normal person) then shot him three times at point blank range with a 12 gauge & still he lived!!. It took the girl to kill him, taking him with her over the edge of the cliff to finish him off!!. For a minute i thought he might have survived,do you think it could have been him at the end, looking through the binoculars?.What made me laugh at the end,was when the hero comes back with the baby & he had the dog on the lead,the lead being wrapped around his hand which had lost its fingers to the mad axeman,why the dog on the lead mr director?. I did enjoy it though!!!
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