Hunger (2009) Movie Review
Written By: YN
Edited By: Grave Reviews Staff
Director: Steven Hentges
Producers: John Sawyer and F.X. Vitolo
Writers: L.D. Goffigan
Date Released: May 15, 2009
Lori Heuring as Jordan
Linden Ashby as Grant
Joe Egender as Luke
Lea Kohl as Anna
Julian Rojas as Alex
Bjørn Johnson as The Scientist
Rating = 1/5 Graves
***May contain some spoilers***
Five people wake up in the dark only to discover that they are trapped at the bottom of an abandoned well where they are being watched by their captor. It gets worse when they learned that they are to be stuck there for 30 days with only water, rolls of toilet paper and a scalpel to survive. Tensions run high when hunger begins settling in and everyone becomes desperate.
With such a premise, you can already guess just how gory this movie can get. Cannibalism, in any shape and form, can crawl under your skin regardless of the reason behind the act. Along with it is the copious amount of smeared blood on faces, clothes, and walls. It feasts on the violence of tearing away the skin and stripping the flesh off the bone. You can only watch in disgust as people gang up on someone and club him to death with a femur. The sound won’t let you get away either as the movie captures the soft, squishy sound of flesh being mangled and masticated beyond recognition.
The Grave Review
There’s something about Hunger (2009) that makes it feel as if you’ve watched it before. Or maybe, that’s just how generic and predictable it is. The plotline is a favorite of gore fans in the horror genre, but sadly, it adds nothing new to the category. It could have been bearable if it is executed well, but what you have is one hour of waiting around and hoping that something happens. And when something does happen, it is all over too quickly, and the credits start rolling in. So, savor the bloodbath while it lasts.
Hunger (2009) runs with the tropey horror genre where a group of strangers are forced into a place where one mastermind controls and plans their deaths. This one is no exception for falling into the cliché that comes with this genre. It has the rational, holier-than-thou character who survives at the end; the aggressive, unstable delinquent who ends up killing everyone; the one driven to insanity; the girl who screams a lot; the martyr; and finally, the villain with a tragic past who’s only way to cope with his trauma is to make other people suffer his pains. It is because of this that the movie becomes too predictable and bland. One doesn’t even have to finish it to know who will kill who and who will be the sole survivor in this mess.
If there’s one saving grace in this film, it’s probably its first few minutes. It opens up with a car accident where a kid wakes up to discover that he’s trapped inside the car with his deceased mother. Then it immediately cuts off to the next scene where it is pitch black, and you are introduced to the characters amid the darkness. All you can see is their scared faces and nothing else. These two seemingly unrelated scenes create a mystery that will get you hooked. Plus the pitch black setting makes everything creepier than it already is as it brings you close to the panicked faces of the characters.
Unfortunately, the lights eventually turn back on, and as if like a rainfall, the movie reveals everything. In one very convenient day, the characters all begin talking about their past crimes which confirm their suspicion as to why they are taken there in the first place. Meanwhile, you are shown montages of the mastermind with his corkboard full of his victim’s photos and his notes on them. Side by side with this is the flashback of the child inside the car. In short, the movie leaves nothing to the imagination. No build up. No character development. No drama.
Now that all the facts are straightened, there’s literally nothing else to do but to wait. And wait. And wait for someone to snap. That’s exactly what happens in the film. It gives you a 30-minute window at the beginning for the reveals and backstories, and then another 30 minutes for watching the characters starve while they just lounge around listlessly. And when someone finally does snap, it takes less than 30 minutes to wipe them all out.
What could have been a venue to further explore the dark side of humanity and the extent of their will to survive turns into a test of patience for its viewers. Because in the end, you’ve watched nothing new.
With these reasons, Grave Reviews gives Hunger (2009) one grave out of five graves.
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