FILM: Hostel Part III
STARRING: Starring Brian Hallisay, Kip Pardue, John Hensley, Chris Coy, Skyler Stone, Sarah Habel, Thomas Kretschmann
DIRECTED BY: Scott Spiegel
WRITTEN BY: Michael D. Weiss and Eli Roth
RUNNING TIME: 88 Minutes
Out Now In America on DVD and Bluray
Out January 23rd In Great Britain on DVD and Bluray!
Its been a long time coming especially with what seems 500 chapters of Saw, but the film along with Jigsaw that started the noughties obsession with all things gore-porn is back and it feels like its never been away.
With creator and writer Eli Roth stepping away from the director’s chair after a well received original and a much panned sequel, Roth this time serves as a co-writer with the franchise being handed over to Scott Spiegel, a man who brought a wonderful film into my life. Its well known among slasher fans that the late 80’s flick The Intruder is probably the last great slash of the boom cycle that went bust when that decade ended. Spiegel seemed like a talent that was to go on to bigger and better things but since then the only film he has done was the poorly received Dusk Till Dawn sequel even though its not as bad as many make out. The truth is Spiegel deserves another go and with Hostel having a well established fan base, for me personally it seemed a perfect fit and one that made this second sequel a much curious and anticipated film.
If you wondering why Hostel III missed you radar at the cinema then do not panic because you not going blind, it seemed in a bizarre way that the studio did not have much faith in this franchise performing at the box office despite horror fans waiting for a new film for a long time. They financed the deal for the film but decided to put it on the straight to DVD route which many years ago would have suggested that the film is not that good. Well over the years with the likes of House Of The Devil and numerous others finding love and critical acclaim on this market, then what I say is do not be too judgemental that Hostel III is going to suck.
But then that is what I did in the first five minutes of the film. First impression? Well I thought it was going to suck! Seriously it started in a fashion that had me sigh. We saw a young man walking into a room only to interrupt a half naked foreign lady who apologises for not having left the room yet. Fans will recall this scene from the original and when her husband comes from the bathroom and starts to act not very normal, its safe to say that you know what is coming. At this particular moment I was thinking of the poor acting on display and how cheap the whole thing looked. I was worried and thought that the franchise was heading into the path of all other cheap straight to DVD gore porn flicks that jumped on the Hostel market but then what is the saying? Do not judge a book by its cover!
The opening is clever, a very good ploy perfectly set up to be misleading and while I was still shaking my head at the way I was fooled we then see the credits roll and the camera pans outside to reveal that we were in fact in the land called Las Vegas and not some backyard foreign country where the first two was set. The Elite Hunting Club members are back in business but why board a plane when you can hack the limbs off at home. It was another twist on what could have been a tired formula but hats off to Roth and his fellow writer Michael D. Weiss for injecting much needed fresh formula and I am happy to say that many times in this film this happens. The misdirection is outstanding and its wonderful to see and feel in a film which budget is cut and you can see at times the low standard effects that come with films of this nature.
But its the plot that will keep you entertained even though it may piss off the diehard fans of the franchise. The entire formula is changed when it comes to the deaths even though we do get the now established first half of a gang going on holiday. This time around the show is all a bit like the original Hangover in which we see four boys travel to Las Vegas for the mother of all stag nights.
If you have watched the two films endlessly then you know what happens, Carter (Kip Pardue), Justin (John Hensley), Scott (Brian Hallisay) and Mike (Skyler Stone) all set off, they have a few drinks meet up with some hot girls only for there to be an air of dread. Three of the guys wake up in the morning and realise that Mike is missing and they try to find him which of course results in a bloodbath and mayhem.
It may seem the same old from reading but believe me like I said there is enough twists and surprises that make the watch enjoyable. Moving the location loses that eerie feel that served the first two films well and I kind of missed those back alleys and a sense of an alien place especially with those gang of boys missing from the piece and then even the joys of killing angle is replaced here with it now being all about gambling and not rich men getting their kicks by killing for fun.
What stunned me is that its not so much gore-porn than the previous films especially because we only have four kill scenes which bloodhounds may find rather lame. I did not think too much of this at the time because I was having too much fun, but there will be many who will put their noses up in the air because they will be expecting a bloodbath!
Yes the changes may infuriate fans but then many criticised the sequel for being a rehash and so how can they complain now when the third offers something different. I am not going to say this is the best film of the year its not even the best straight to DVD of 2011, but it is a much better than I and many will expect. It does go rather silly towards the end but its a fun silly and while it loses a bit of respect for not finishing on the dark note that it hinted for a short while, Hostel III serves the franchise well for what I hope is now the last time, because while I enjoyed this for what it was, I hope that in two years time I won’t be reviewing part 5,6 and 7 because this is yet another horror series that does not deserve to be milked for all its worth.