out of Five
Running time: 107
Enjoyable, gore-splattered horror flick – this is extremely nasty in places but it has some interesting points to make at the same time.
What’s it all about?
The plot of The Hills Have Eyes exactly follows that of Wes Craven’s 1977 original. Ted Levine plays Cleveland police detective Big Bob Carter, who’s driving to California with his extended family (including Kathleen Quinlan and Emilie de Ravin, from Lost).
However, when Big Bob takes a detour, things start to go horribly wrong. First unseen sharp objects puncture their tyres and cause a wreck and then, when Big Bob goes for help, the family are attacked by vicious, radioactive mutants.
The violence is genuinely terrifying, perhaps because bloodthirsty mutants are the screen’s scariest monster. The director, Alexandre Aja, includes several gory scenes but is careful never to let the film resort to gore for gore’s sake. Indeed, the most shocking killings are the ones that happen quickly and without warning.
The performances are excellent. Levine is always good value but there’s
strong work from both Dan Byrd (as the son) and Aaron Stanford (from
Tadpole) as son-in-law Doug. However, what really lifts the film are the details and there’s a strong streak of anti-Americanism that’s particularly interesting.
In short, The Hills Have Eyes is an extremely well made horror flick that’s definitely worth seeing, if you’ve got the stomach for it. Recommended.
The Hills Have Eyes