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March 13, 2006 | by  | in Film | [ssba]


This movie seemed to be a lot of things at first. It seemed to be a primitive spectacle of a movie, focusing on hedonism, breasts, and gore. It seemed to have a thin veil of a narrative, and to be a movie primarily aimed at gore-seekers. As the movie finished, I thought it was all these things; however, the more I thought about it, the more I really appreciated Hostel.

Hostel is about three over-sexed backpackers looking for a good time in Europe. They are told to go to Slovakia where all the girls are supposedly gorgeous and would do anything for tourists who flashed the cash. A couple of nights partying with three beautiful girls later, and they all go missing one-by-one. The first half of the movie filled with frivolous fun ends, and the brutal torture begins. The executers belong to a secret society of wealthy businessmen who pay money for humans according to how much they are worth. Women are the pricey ones, but Americans are apparently most expensive at $25,000.

Because I watched this film alone, I prepared myself with some good reliable gun-kata meditation. I didn’t want to be the only one vomiting and passing out like some people apparently did overseas. However, as the film progressed, I didn’t need to prepare myself mentally after all. As an avid watcher of gore-flicks it was mostly the neatly lined up torture tools and suspense that was scary, though the most horrifying aspect was the sheer possibility of illegal slayings of humans internationally for money. The site for Hostel reports that director Roth found inspiration for the movie through a Thai website that advertised the opportunity to kill someone for a sum of only $10,000. Whether or not the site was real, that’s still a pretty crappy price for a human life.

This film is well worth watching, not just for its gore, but also for its sociological implications.

Directed by Eli Roth
Readings, Hoyts


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