Written by / 10/01/2011 / No comments / , , ,

HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN

title: HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN
year: 2011
cast: Rutger Hauer, Brian Downey, Gregory Smith, Molly Dunsworth
rating: ***1/2

Every once in a while a movie comes out that, to use a clich├ęd term, pushes the envelope. Well this one signs, seals and delivers blood and guts like it’s nothing doing. But it's quite the chore for the antihero protagonist, a train-hopping hobo who winds up in a small town that makes Sergio Leone’s vilest villas seem like Walnut Grove. While some of the dialog is banally beyond imagination, especially spouted by the intentionally cartoonish villains – a reckless mobster and his two sons – the circumstances leading to each new action scene provides the audience with something to gain or lose. But it’s when Hobo meets a heart of gold hooker – who gives him shelter after he’s beaten by thugs and a sadistic “Bum Fights” director before wielding his titular weapon of choice – that the movie provides heart to the ultra violent bedlam. Reminiscent of exploitation flicks made by Roger Corman, Troma, and Bloody Sam Peckinpah, this overboard odyssey is so drenched in violence it all seems commonplace. Yet the plight of our hero, striving to keep the hooker alive while gunning down all wrongdoers – and eventually centering on the mobster’s favorite son who has no restrictions on murder – never loses a tight grip on the handle. Star Rutger Hauer, iconic for villainous roles in NIGHTHAWKS, THE HITCHER, and BLADE RUNNER, has aged into a gruff, no-nonsense tough guy with a tattered past hemmed into a timeworn countenance.
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