film note: The Hunt

Betty Gilpin stars in the best Hollywood lampoon to come along since Get Out.

The Hunt
Directed by Craig Zobel
USA, 2020

The Hunt is the most fun I’ve had with a mainstream Stateside release in a long time, despite its being a revenge tale, which I normally loathe. But the vengeance here goes beyond the killings and into the cultural. The satire made me laugh out loud more than once. 

Having a two-time, feel-good Oscar winner like Hilary Swank play the bad guy as well as kick ass in an extended quote from Kill Bill, and hearing venal liberal killers preen about a 12-Years-a-Slave release party represents a whole different level of lampoon, at least for mainstream releases. Not everyone is going to appreciate it, either, judging by the Letterboxd ratings.

Still, both sides of the cultural divide get skewered by this script’s two-edged sword, if Hollywood and liberal blue-checked elites get cut quite a bit more. Seems like they deserve it from my perspective. What I really want to see is a satirical violent action thriller that satirizes and offs film critics. But that’s never going to happen, is it?

Is this an example of the working-class cinema I’ve asked for? Well, no, but I’d sure as hell rather watch this again than slog through a con job like Parasite one more time. 

Plus, Betty Gilpin is some kind of wonderful. We never know if she’s a Trump supporter or not and that’s the film’s most cutting and delicious secret.

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