The most talked-about movie of the year is the one nobody has seen … yet. The Hunt was supposed to be released on September 27th, 2019, however, a series of events caused this release to be canceled. 2 of these were the August 3rd El Paso shooting which killed 22 people and the August 4th Dayton shooting which killed 9. The studio decided to pull all commercials for it shortly after. Mainly due to the fact that the movie is about hunting and killing other people, this response was kind of expected.
There was a third, and possibly the silliest “thing” that sort of tainted the movie and that is that the people being hunted were conservatives or as they were mentioned in the trailers “Deplorables”. Once President Trump got wind of this news, off to Twitter he went and it was an all-out attack on the movie as being racially charged, bad for the country, and so on. Now, this type of movie is nothing new at all. Ready or Not (2019), Hunger Games (2012), Surviving the Game (1994), & Running Man (1987) are just some of the movies which revolve around people hunting other people for sport. The only thing setting this apart from those other movies is that people are so offended by anything that pokes fun at their political stance.
The movie starts out innocently enough, a group text and within the group we see people talking about “The Manor” and “The Hunt”. Cut to a plane and we see Richard (Glenn Howerton) chatting up a flight attendant and he comes across as a kind of smug know it all in the scene. If you’ve seen “Its always sunny in Philadelphia” he’s just playing the same character he does on that show. One of the “Deplorables” wakes up early and has to be dealt with. Once he’s taken care of we get to the big reveal for our unlucky dozen. They all wake up in a field, gags locked into their mouths. They all come together and find the key to unlock the gags and a crate with an assortment of weapons in it. Then much like the opening of Hunger Games, it goes downhill real fast. The opening attack is quick, brutal and at some points kinda funny.
Some manage to escape the kill box they were in, but if you expect them to make it far - you’d be wrong. This movie is more about Crystal (Betty Gilpin), which if you saw the commercials you could automatically see she is more than her ‘liberal elite’ kidnappers expected. Now, this is not just a “kill all the Deplorables” movie. The Liberal elites in the movie are the bigger joke of the whole thing. There’s even a reason why these people are being hunted, It’s not some huge mind-blowing conspiracy that will blow your mind, but there is a reason.
I thought the movie was pretty well done. I probably expected more from the writing team of Nick Cuse (HBO’s Watchmen, HBO’s The Leftovers) and Damon Lindelof (ST: Into Darkness, HBO’s Watchmen), but this is really is not a major release kinda movie. This movie really should have been released on any one of the many streaming services that currently exist. Gilpin did a good job as the vet who turns the tables on her captors, Hilary Swank was also OK for the amount of screen time she had. The group of Liberal Elites just come across as a bunch of rich idiots, but they are written to come across as such, & their captive victims really don’t live long enough to make any judgment on. In all honesty, there’s really no rush to see this one.