AYIF Review: HATCHET


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Written and Directed by Adam Green, 2006


Today I will be watching a film that was a real darling at Fantastic Fest III, the first I ever attended.  Unfortunately I missed it because I didn’t arrive until day three.  I had heard a lot of people talking about this and how much they liked it, but it would have made my list just based on its cast.  The film in question features three legendary horror icons: Robert Englund (Freddy), Kane Hodder (Jason), and Tony Todd (Candyman).  I was interested to see these titans of terror used in alternative capacities.  Having lived in Baton Rouge and having been to New Orleans several times with differing but still frightening results, I was also interested to see a horror film set in New Orleans.  It is such a creepy city and I really think there should be more horror films set there.  All said, HATCHET seemed like it would be the perfect movie for me.

It was not.

HATCHET is your basic slasher flick.  A group of dopes take a haunted swamp tour deep in the bayou that happens to be inhabited by a killer named Victor Crowley with a dark past.  Then they get picked off one by one in not so nice ways utilizing several different tools.  The group then gets whittled down to a couple survivors who fight said killer.  Credits.  Pretty standard stuff going on here, in fact it’s conceptually oversimplified.  Writer/director Adam Green uses American horror standards to recreate the feel of an 80’s slasher flick.  He focuses on gore and jump scares, intentionally giving us flat, vapid characters and stilted writing to create this illusion.  The inclusion of the aforementioned horror icons didn’t hurt none either.  Being an avid fan of slasher films from the 80’s, this should have been like chocolate covered popcorn for me.




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