Hostel Movie Review

This day and age, money can buy you just about anything. Sex. Power. Real estate. Expensive cars. Yachts. Vacations. But once you've experienced all that money can buy -- and all the world has to offer -- what can do you for excitement? Is it possible to purchase something unforgettable when the very essence of the word is your day-to-day life?

According to Hostel, extremely wealthy and over privileged businessman can buy something they won't soon forget: another human being's life. Americans are expensive, but if you're open to the ethnicity of your purchase, you can get a human for a fairly reasonable price. But we are not talking about selling humans into slavery. These clients are purchasing "products" to torture and kill.

Apparently, Hostel is based on real events. There is (or was) a legal practice in Thailand in which victims volunteer to be murdered by a paying customers so that their families get insurance money. Naturally, Hostel takes some major creative liberties, but this movie has a unique idea, for sure, and that's hard to come by in a horror film.

Hostel follows young Americans Paxton (Jay Hernandez), Josh (Derek Richardson), and Icelander Oli (Eythor Gudjonsson) as they embark upon a backpacking trip through various European countries. They're vacationing to see the sights, smoke pot, party hardy, and screw some hot European chicks. As luck (or not) would have it, they strike girl gold... but soon they soon wish they would have picked a different pair of broads to mess around with.

The girls are really part of an elaborate (or plausibly elaborate) business -- called Elite Hunting -- designed to seduce young tourists into partaking in certain activities which lead to them getting drugged up, unconscious, and relocated to a desolate, abandoned warehouse where they are chained to a chair and tortured to death by clientele. These are some mighty sick businessmen.

Regarding the controversy about the extreme blood, gore, and graphic violence -- yes, it's true. A man taking an electric screwdriver to another man's body isn't even the tip of the iceberg. There is a scene in which a man takes a blow torch to a woman's eye, causing it to bulge out and rest on her cheek, hanging by some membrane thing. Later, the eyeball is sliced off (which we see in full detail) causing a yellow fluid to pour from the laceration. How the film avoided an NC-17 rating is beyond me, especially considering the startling amount of sexual content and nudity found in the first act. Note to parents: this is not a movie to take the family to on a Sunday afternoon after church.

But that's all the movie's got going for it -- shock value. Look -- boobs! Gasp -- brain matter! Oh hell -- that guy just got chopped in half with his own chainsaw! Wow -- I can't believe we're watching this! All this shock stuff is fine and dandy if you're a 17-year-old male hanging out with your guy friends on Saturday night. But for anyone -- and everyone -- else, a horror movie cannot run on shock value alone.

As usual, writer/director Eli Roth (Cabin Fever) is more concerned with shocking audiences than delivering genuine tension and suspense. He has an original and engaging premise, but fails to develop anything more than a blood-and-guts freak show. It's a shame that Hostel isn't scary -- in the least -- because if the gore relieved tension instead of replacing it, without a doubt, Roth would have had one hell of a horror flick.

How much for a triple?

Cast & Crew

Director :

Producer : , , Chris Briggs

Starring : , , Eythor Gudjonsson, Jan Vlasak, Barbara Nedeljakova, Jennifer Lim, Rick Hoffman


Comments

emzx's picture

emzx

I think tha hostel was a good film its the type of film all people associate with a gothic genre as it is like only goths woul dwatch it well i know a heck ov a load ov chavs who have seen it 20 times more then me i dont see why just because there is a lot ov blood in it people automatically think it is a gothic film i don't think it is i have seen films a lot worse then dis one

7 years 5 months ago
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hostel's picture

hostel

why isnt this film showing in all cinemas?thanks

8 years 3 months ago
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izel's picture

izel

Hmmm, well that was an intense film best seen on xanax;) I doubt any part of it was true and I think the Thailand tie-in is basicly mythology that directors love to come up with and they desperagely try to tell people pIt is odd how fear is kind of projected out to strange locales like Thailand or Eastern Europe. Oh well such is life....I mean things are spooky, gorey, fun. For better or worse real life evil is often banal, bland and entirely uncinematic. I am amused at how many people believe the sort of "based on a true story" line that directors come up with.Have Fun,Sends Steve

6 years 7 months ago
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toniryan99's picture

toniryan99

hostel is a good film, kinda gory though !!jus to comment on that last post, i live in UK and hostel was out in the movies here !!

7 years 1 month ago
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axel rudge's picture

axel rudge

i think that the movie was well made and i would see it again and again but why wasnt it in the movies.i mean come on that would have been mad to with the sorround sound going and all.anywayz thanx for a good movie!

7 years 11 months ago
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emanuelerch's picture

emanuelerch

First of all sorry for my english that isn't very good.I found the film interesting but I also thing that there is too much blood, maybe unnecessary. I have a question. Do someone know what Paxton (the only that rest alive) said to the man that supposed to kill him? I mean, when they talk in another language.Thanks for your help. Is not urgent, i just have the doubt.

7 years 11 months ago
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Hostel Rating

" Weak "

Rating: R, 2006

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