Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Hostel - Part II |
Actor: Jay Hernandez
Genres: Comedy, Horror
Young girls become the target of a group that pays to kill.
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Didn't live up to its potential in any way, but still lots o
Robert P. Beveridge | Cleveland, OH | 06/10/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Hostel Part II (Eli Roth,2007)
The second film in the Hostel franchise is a difficult one to review, and that's pretty obvious given that reviews of the film have been split almost right down the middle. The problem is that while it's enjoyable (assuming you like that sort of thing), this is a movie that could have been so very, very much more than it was.
After a quick, and morbidly amusing, stop in to see Paxton (Jay Hernandez), the sole survivor of the first film, we immediately get back to teenagers in peril. This time it's a trio of American girls, Beth (A Walk to Remember's Lauren German), Whitney (Bijou Phillips, recently of Havoc), and Lorna (Welcome to the Dollhouse's Heather Matarazzo). You know what's coming. An alternating storyline also focuses on Todd (Richard Burgi), who buys one of the girls as a present for his friend Stuart (Roger Bart; both guys normally do time on Desperate Housewives). And that's where the germs of brilliance that could have grown into a full-blown virus lie in this movie-- the idea of taking the same scenario from the original and turning it on its head, giving us the dirt from the perspective of the killers. And we do get some of that, but it's not the focus of the film. That would have been genius.
The strongest point of the movie is that Roth dropped the softcore angle and went for the straight gore-- which has the effect, of course, of heightening the ugliness of scenes where sexuality does play a role. The greatest of these is truly brilliant, and displaces the infamous leg-shaving scene in Cabin Fever as the best single scene Roth has yet committed to film; you'll know it when you get to it, and it would be worth the price of admission alone. It is a profoundly discomfiting piece of filmmaking, and shows that Roth, when he brings his A game, is truly capable of being on the level of the guys he idolizes (another one of whom turns up for a brief cameo in this movie; I was floored, but no one else in the audience recognized him. Don't look at the cast list before you go, and see if you catch the cameo before the end credits).
All that said, the movie is rife with inconsistencies and plot holes, but that may be by design; from the opening scene, it's obvious that Roth intended this movie as a rather vicious parody of the horror film sequel formula; if you can look at the odd lapses as satire-- and Roth's own body of work, which is usually tight as a drum, lends credence to such an interpretation-- they're forgivable. The movie also contains a surprising amount of grim humor; it's a rare thing when an otherwise straight horror film has the audience walking out of the theater laughing hysterically. If the original Hostel was Roth's take on Takashi Miike's Visitor Q, this one is Ichi the Killer. with a dose of Flower of Flesh and Blood thrown in for good measure. Roth continues his one-man quest to drag Hollywood into the same space Asian horror filmmakers have been inhabiting since the late eighties, and he's turned in a movie in service of that goal that, while not living up to its potential, remains the most fun I've had seeing a horror film on the big screen in a whole lot of years. *** ½"
You know your movie is a turd if your parents have to defend
Jimmy Park | 12/25/2007
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Not only did Eli Roth bring in his two brothers to work on this, he had his parents defend this piece of garbage film in the special features section. Yes, that's right - his parents! Big, hotshot director had his mommy and daddy explain why his film doesn't suck. His mom talked about how torture has been in artwork before and his dad talked about how governments institutionalize torture as if this film had some redeeming social quality. Of course, nothing could excuse this lame attempt to capitalize on the first movie. Eli doesn't seem to know the difference between a horror movie and a snuff film. Hostel is simply the later. Roth explained that all horror films make a social commentary. Horror films can entertain. Eli's torture porn just makes the world a darker place. As Roth put it, "In the end, people just want to watch Hostel to see other people get f****d up really bad." If that's the case, I feel saddened that people would want to watch innocent people get tortured to death in excruciating detail."
Even better than the first movie and then some! Eli Roth is
Saint Thomas | Kent, Ohio | 11/16/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Most people either love Eli Roth or they hate him. The most commen complaints regarding his films are usually about his quirky and strange direction style (think David Lynch during his TWIN PEAKS days), his over the top use of gore and nudity (which is something that we FRIDAY THE 13TH fans have all seen before) and the unfair label by the public that he started the whole new trend in Horror called "Torture Porn." The last one is just a brush off comment if you ask me. Eli Roth is way beyond a simple label such as that. It's just something people say in order to sound like they're "above it." I'm willing to bet that half of those people haven't even seen any of the HOSTEL films.
I myself am a huge Eli Roth fan. I've seen most of his movies in theaters. I knew Roth was a good director from the start. CABIN FEVER pretty much kicked the door open for him. It was just a matter of time before he started to get the kind of recognition that he truly deserved.
From the moment HOSTEL II went into theaters, me and a few of my "choice" friends (those who I think appreciate this type of thing) were there in a heart beat! As the movie progressed on, we couldn't believe how wonderfully this sequel was crafted! It's not your typical sequel, "paint by the numbers" film either. HOSTEL II takes the idea from the first movie and expands it into a new and more terrifying direction. This time, the quirky humor is on over load and that makes things all the more scary. It's Eli Roth's dark sense of humor and smirking outlook on society that makes his movies so strange and intense.
A friend of mine watched this movie a while back with his girlfriend and when I asked him what he thought of it, he didn't have much to say. I was shocked at his response because I (and the friends that I watched the movie with) instantly fell in love with this sequel. We even liked it better than the first. Anyways, when I asked him what exactly he didn't enjoy about this movie, he didn't give me a straight forward answer. To me, it seemed like he didn't even watch the movie. What it all boiled down for him was that he was bored and didn't think it was a necessary sequel. He just couldn't get into it, or rather thats what I gathered from his vague statements. I would imagine that's the same way most people view Eli Roth's films.
So I asked my friend, "Did we even see the same movie!?!" I just couldn't believe he was brushing it off like that. HOSTEL II, which I came away from awstruck and amazed, he had very little to say on the matter. Go figure. I have come to the conclusion that no matter what the movie is, if it's a sequel, people are going to hate it. You might have a little saving grace if it's a number two or three, but for the most part people hate sequels. No matter what number it is. Sometimes there is an exception to that rule like THE AMITYVILLE HORROR part II or ALIENS. I myself usually enjoy sequels, unless they're real stinkers like the horrible sequel to 976-EVIL.
Anyways, HOSTEL II is better than it's original for a number of reasons. The creep factor is definitely up. People always seem to be conspiring against one another. Also, the movie has a very "Italian Giallo Horror" vibe about it. Along the lines of Dario Argento's SUSPIRIA and DEEP RED. Another positive thing about this sequel is the light that is shed into the world of this "killing cult." You get a real good idea of how powerful and crazy these people are! They're brooding and sinister, kidnapping people without remorse. Last but not least is the gore factor. Pumped up to notch ten on the gore scale, HOSTEL II is definitely not for the squeamish! Torture scenes last a very long time, some of them really gruesome! My favorite being the Elizabeth Bathory themed one. You just have to see it to understand it.
The story of the movie is the fundamental opposite of the first movie. Instead of just the guys getting it the worst, this time it's the girls who go under the knife! It's simple and it works, mainly because HOSTEL is the type of plot that doesn't need to be changed around all that much. This "death cult" of business men (and lunatics) is just too powerful for things to change too much between the first and second film. They pay, they kill and they cover it up. For some people, this story might just be a cheap excuse for torture and killing. I would have to say those people don't read between the lines. There is a smarter and more sarcastic message behind Roth's films.
Over all, I would have to say this is one of the few perfect sequels. Eli Roth knows what he's doing and it seems like he's going to be one of the best Horror directors in the genre. So far he's got a good list of films under his belt (CABIN FEVER, HOSTEL and HOSTEL II) and with production coming from Quentin Tarantino, his future in the Horror business looks bright.
Gore Hounds, do I even need to say it? Check it out! Fans of strange cinema, also check it out. Don't listen to all the negative reviews out there. Those people don't know what they're talking about. They wouldn't know a bad sequel if it ran up and bit them in the leg! This is far from a bad sequel. HOSTEL II is a rare case where the sequel is actually better than the original.
This movie isn't for everybody. If graphic death, torture and buckets of blood shed isn't your cup of tea, then it's time to rent or buy something else. If you want to know what the amazing director Eli Roth is all about (in terms of cinema) just watch the HOSTEL films. You need an open mind and a sarcastic opinion about society in general. HOSTEL II is a warped look in the cracked mirror of life. Some people get it, some people don't.
Over and out!"
Not as Terrible as People Say But Fails to Live Up to its Po
Tsuyoshi | Kyoto, Japan | 01/20/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
""Hostel Part 2" picks up the thread where the original left off. After this effective opening chapter, director Eli Roth starts telling the horrifying tales again, about three American college students in Slovakia. For the sequel Roth changes the gender of the students to female (Lauren German, Heather Matarazzo and Bijou Phillips) and also includes the sub-plots of "buyers" or sadistic tormentors played by Roger Bart and Richard Burgi.
Not much can be said about the thin plot originally inspired by urban legends. "Hostel Part 2" like its predecessor takes it granted that legends are true. As a consequence all we have to do is to wait for the tortures to begin, and end. The sequel provides the gruesome tortures and slow deaths and is full of blood and screams. The extremely graphic film, however, is hardly called scary because it has no nuance or subtlety suggesting the horrors that are to arrive.
In fact the film does not attempt to hide the fact that terrible fates await the characters. There is no sense of suspense; what we don't know is the way how these unsuspecting students are tortured. But maybe two "Hostel" films are supposed to be like that. Roth is quite good at making the bloody torture scenes and the dark interior sets are impressive. The photography showing the countryside is also very good, beautiful and creepy at the same time.
There is another thing Eli Roth is good at and that is the casting. The main cast is very good (and they are all talented), but here I'm talking about the cameos. Ruggero Deodato, director of "Cannibal Holocaust" briefly appears, doing something I shouldn't mention. Milan Knazko (who was really Minister for Culture of the Slovak Republic) appears as "Sacha." To watch cameos and references to other films would be pretty amusing to me because they are virtually the list of the people Roth idolizes. Was there Quentin Tarantino? Yes, watch the TV closely.
However, I couldn't like the film very much despite (or because of) these "merits." From at certain point "Hostel Part 2" starts being too self-conscious. Should we take seriously the middle-aged lady taking a shower of blood, apparent reference to Elizabeth Báthory? Should we laugh when Roger Bart's character refers to one Disney animation character he played? The third act of the film almost becomes slapstick with gores.
"Hostel Part 2" with the structure that has been getting more and more repetitious since the original has surprisingly less scares than you expect, being emotionally detached from the viewers, almost cynical in its tone in describing the characters (good or bad, killing or killed) and their behaviors. The film is content with doing what it does, often disregarding the audiences who want to be scared or (if I may use the word) entertained.