Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The Hitcher

Hola --

Every once in a while a movie comes along and surpasses any reasonable level of "suspension of disbelief." When youre watching a movie, you accept with no problem that giant gorillas exist and that they roam New York. Or that an undead serial killer can haunt your dreams. Or even that the geeky loser best friend can actually walk away with the most beautiful girl in school.
Yesterday I watched a movie called "The Hitcher" that was supposed to be a thriller, yet I could help but laugh my ass off at its stupidity and absurdity. If you havent seen the movie yet and dont want it spoiled for you, skip the rest of this post cuz Im gonna give you a brief run down of it.

We open in perhaps the most predictable of places: it was a dark and stormy night and two people are driving down a deserted road in the middle of nowhere. Pretty original. So theyre driving and they almost run over a guy - "The Hitcher" - whos standing in the middle of the road besides his broken down car. Their car spins, they dont know what to do, the Hitcher starts walking towards them, they cant start their car, he gets ever closer, the car starts, they take off, leaving the Hitcher once again standing in the middle of the road.
The couple drive to a gas station to fill up and get some snacks and who should hop out of the passenger side of a rig just a few minutes later? The Hitcher. The couple is getting ready to leave and the guy feels the need to apologize for almost killing the man so he goes up, says sorry, and then agrees to take the Hitcher down the road a bit. Big mistake.
Not long into the ride, the Hitcher pulls out a knife, threatens to kill the girl, then turns and holds it against the guys neck. The guy slams on the breaks, the Hitcher smacks into the windshield, and the couple manage to literally kick him out of the car. The Hitcher goes rolling along the road, and lays face first in a pool of collecting rain, in not too good of shape. The couple - who drive a suped up muscle car - speed off like their lives depend on it - which they do. Remember that point: a speeding suped up muscle car.
Its now the next day, the couple are driving down the road when a station wagon with a family of four passes them. Whos in the back seat? The Hitcher.
Did you get that? A familys station wagon manages to pick up the Hitcher and then catch and pass a speeding muscle car. Unbelievable. But wait, theres more.
The couple try to warn the family, but in the process drive off the side of the road thus destroying their car. They climb back to the road and walk a bit where they come across the station wagon and the now slain family of four. No, wait, the dad is still alive, so they get into the car and drive to the hospital - or truck stop, whichever comes first.
While theyre there the cops arrive and arrest the couple for the murder of the family. They take them to the jail and lock the guy up while they question the girl. Guess who shows up at the jail? Yep, The Hitcher. And he kills every single cop in the building. With just a knife. No, seriously. But wait, theres more.
Somehow the couple manages to escape just before a gang of cops show up. Next stop, a junk yard. And guess who shows up? A cop. Ha! You thought I was gonna say someone else huh? Gimme a second. So the guy goes out to tell the cop whats going on, the cop is having none of it and tries to arrest him. The girl comes out with a gun, and as shes trying to explain to the cop that theyre innocent, the cop gets a bullet right between the eyes... from The Hitcher. He was hiding in a bus with a sniper rifle. Another cop shows up, couple escape in a cop car, Hitcher kills the second cop. Just for fun.
Now the couple are driving down the road, being chased by a phalanx of cops. Theres like 37 cop cars and even a helicopter. Then guess who joins the chase? Yep, The Hitcher. In a Trans Am. Where did he get the car? Anywho, he chases the cops down and one by one picks them off. He pulls up along side a cop, shoots him in the head, and the cop car flips. Cuz its a known fact that a cop car will automatically flip once its driver is killed. Remember this.
So again, one by one the Hitcher is killing cops on his way to get to the couple. And then he goes and takes out the helicopter too. From the Trans Am. C'mon man, Kitt can even do that. So he finally gets to the couple, destroys their car and then... drives away. What? Why?
The couple high tail it to a hotel where they take a nice romantic shower and get themselves a little something something. Then the guy goes outside, leaving the girl alone inside. Well, not alone for long cuz shes joined in bed by... the Hitcher. They eventually manage to go outside where the girl sees her guy tied up between two rigs - each facing a different direction - and they hop inside one of them. But all is okay because the cavalry has arrived.
A cop walks up to the tied up guy, looks at him, and instead of helping him out he decides to just stand there and point his gun at nowhere and nobody in particular. How could he not untie the guy? What purpose is leaving him there gonna accomplish? Oh, gotcha, if he untied him then the Hitcher wouldnt be able to step on the gas and tear the dude apart. Which is exactly what happens. Lame.
Finally the Hitcher is arrested and hes taken to a jail full of cops who have yet to be murdered. Notice I said "have yet." So instead of keeping the Hitcher there, they decide to move him to a different jail - which only tells the audience that something bad is gonna happen. So hes handcuffed, loaded into a police van, and hes accompanied by three heavily armed guards - one of which is sitting in the back staring the Hitcher in the face. And in a moment that may be the most mind numbing of all - the girl is loaded into a car and the car proceeds to follow the van - cuz apparently the victim always has to follow her attacker where ever he goes.
Once on the road, the Hitcher frees himself from the cuffs and kills all three guards in the van with him. Remember what I said about a cop car flipping when its driver is killed? Yep, the van flips too. Im no expert, but this just doesnt happen in real life.
During the van flippage, the car thats following gets disabled and the cop unable to defend himself. So the Hitcher walks up and kills him. And then, instead of killing the girl, he walks down the road and into the sunset. That is, until the girl walks up behind him and shoots him in the back with a rifle. And then in the head.

And that my friends, is the end.

This had potential to be a decent hunter-prey thriller, but it never even approached believe ability. I never felt suspense, or fear, or anything other than embarrassment for whomever wrote this piece of crap.
Seriously, its mind numbingly bad. Not in a "so bad its good" way like "Plan 9 From Outer Space", but in a so bad its bad way. If theres ever one movie you should avoid, its this one. Go rent "Catwoman" instead, you wont be disappointed. At least not any more than youd be by this one.

-- DBW --

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