Notable Cast: Rutger Hauer, Molly Dunsworth, Brian Downey, Gregory Smith, Nick Bateman
"I used to be like you. A long time ago. All brand new and perfect. No mistakes, no regrets. People look at you and think of how wonderful your future will be. They want you to be something special, like a doctor, or a lawyer. I hate to tell you this, but if you grow up here, you're more likely to wind up selling your bodies on the streets, or shooting dope from dirty needles in a bus stop. And if you're successful, you'll make money selling junk to crackheads. And don't think twice about killing someone's wife, because you won't even know it's wrong in the first place. Maybe... you'll end up like me. A hobo with a shotgun." -- The Hobo
The fact that grindhouse films are finally coming back in all of their retro ultra exploitative charm certainly makes my day. With the likes of some famous cult directors touting the genre, films like "Machete" and "Hobo With A Shotgun" are seeing the light of day. Which is certainly to our benefit. "Hobo With A Shotgun" handedly captures that early 80s grindhouse vibe with its over the top gory action filled ways and the entire time I sat at the theatre, the smile never left my face. Is it a film that's going to change your outlook on life? Hell no, but like any self respecting grindhouse feature this day and age it certainly will entertain you to no end.
A hobo (Hauer) arrives in Hope Town (referred to as Scum Town and Fuck Town for most of the film) to start a new life. His dreams of starting his own lawn mowing business are throw to the gutter as he begins to spiral into the heinous crimes committed by the mob honcho The Drake (Downey) and his two screwy sons Slick (Smith) and Ivan (Bateman). When he earns enough money to buy his lawnmower, the hobo decides that a good yard keeper isn't what the city needs...so he buys a shotgun instead and starts to distribute justice one shell at a time.
Here's the beauty of "Hobo With A Shotgun": it's not beautiful at all. It distinctly embraces its dirty low budget look and style, focusing down on the sheer brilliance of its idea and more than impressive directorial style. Low budget can be the birthing place of creativity in film and "Hobo" certainly succeeds at this. The coloring is classic with its bright vibrant (emotional) colors and the camera work is clever as hell. Not to mention that the script fully enhances the oddly comical plot and details it with some of the greatest quotes and dialogue ever written. I could seriously quote this movie all day long and it never loses its vibe (one of my personal favorites "When life gives you razor blades... you make a baseball bat, covered in razor blades."). In all honesty, if you love that old 80s look and feel (they even use keyboards for the score!) then this film is a must see.
Is there anything really wrong with this movie? No, not really even though some scenes were disturbing enough even to make me cringe, the school bus scene is hilariously fucked and this film certainly knew what it wanted to be and grabbed it by the balls and drug it to its high point. This makes "Hobo With A Shotgun" one of my favorite films this year. A high recommendation from this reviewer.
"You and me are goin' on a car-ride to hell... and you're riding shotgun!" -- The Hobo
Written By Matt Reifschneider