Hobo with a Shotgun
The Easter Bunny delivered a nice but GRUESOMELY GORY little treat today. Anyone that considers this movie needs to be prepared for about 110 of 121 minutes of over the top, non CGI, ultra violent gore mixed in with some pretty funny one liners and the Nexus One himself, grizzly and old Rutger Hauer as the Hobo. This is based off of one of the fake trailers from “Grindhouse” by Tarantino and Rodriguez back in 2007. This wasn’t included in the double feature my friend and I went and saw but on one of the four or five different DVD or Blu Ray releases the Weinsteins enticed people to buy. I only bought the first issuance (which had no trailers) so I never saw the short. What we had was “Machete” by Robert Rodriguez (feature film reviewed here), “Thanksgiving” by Eli Roth (hopefully being made into a movie: the trailer was so awesome), “Werewolf Women of the SS” by Rob Zombie and “Don’t” by Edgar Wright from “Shawn of the Dead” and “Hot Fuzz”. Anyway, here we get the super-violent, over the top, extremely bloody (and pretty gross) revenge tale of a Hobo… with a shotgun.
There’s not much plot to this one. Hauer rolls into town riding a train car, witnesses the city is brutally ruthless and under the control of a dude named Drake and his two asshole sons. The first thing he witnesses is a weird manhole beheading which sprays more blood into the air than is possibly in a human body (with some weird Asian looking lady dancing in it) – this is an example of the “we’re not taking this seriously and neither should you” attitude you will experience throughout this movie. Soon enough we have Troma-style bumper car head smashes, the word SCUM grittily carved into a chest, the Hobo eating glass, hockey skate beheadings, etc. for the rest of the run time. At some point, early on, Hobo witnesses and act of violence against the local sweetheart hooker, and decides to clean up the streets – ONE SHELL AT A TIME! After eating glass for money, Hobo heads to the local pawn shop to buy himself a cheap lawnmower and turn his life around. While he’s in there, three men come in brandishing machetes and guns threatening to kill a woman and an infant for the money in the register. Well, this is enough so he grabs the shotgun off of the wall and bloodily takes care of the three hoodlums – then pays for the shotgun. This is no spoiler, but next he takes care of: the guy who videos killing the homeless for money, the masturbating-pedophile-child-abducting guy in the santa suit, the pimp, a corrupt-hooker-beating cop, and several other people until we get to the climax.
While this movie is SUPER SUPER violent and gory, it’s also got Rutger Hauer in it as a crazy, one line spouting, vengeful Hobo. To me, I liked it – but it’s not for the squeamish. One of my favorite parts was, after delivering the hooker-with-the-good-heart to the hospital (because she was ¼ decapitated with a handsaw), he is heading off to finish up the job (killing the dude and his sons). He passes by the newborn ward and delivers this awesome speech:
“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. Or maybe… you’ll end up like me. (here he goes crazy with inflection) A hobo with a shotgun!! “
If you saw Tarantino and Rodriguez’s “Grindhouse” double feature, then you should have some knowledge of Hobo With a Shotgun, seeing as it was one of the featured “trailers” in the series. After enjoying “Deathproof”, “Planet Terror” and “Machete” (based off another of the fake trailers), I had a fairly good idea of what I was in for with “Hobo”. Yet, somehow it exceeded my expectations to create this beautifully mad Technicolor world that is deliciously fucked up.
It starts off with a scene that’s a cross between “Desperate Living” and “Caligula” (two movies which left me feeling a bit…..unclean after I saw them for the first time). Imagine if you will, a town filled with degenerates, streets of trash and graffiti and a man named The Drake (who is absolutely NOT cool like Drake the rapper a.k.a Jimmy from Degrassi). The Drake runs this town and he and his sons go around killing and mutilating just for the hell of it. They supply the townspeople with drugs to take away the pain that they inflict and have their hand in the local prostitution ring (which apparently consists of every woman under the age of 30 who isn’t a mother). Fear is The Drake’s main game and his hold on this town of deviants is firm.
Enter one hobo off a train who’s simply looking for a place to call home. Dude picked the wrong town. Once he realizes his mistake (after witnessing a murder staged as a street show, the breaking of a teenage boy’s arm, an attempted rape of a prostitute and a violent robbery attempt wherein a child is threatened), this hobo has had ENOUGH. Armed with nothing but a shotgun and a prostitute named Abby, he goes to town (literally) wiping the scum of the earth off the streets and into hell. The rest of the movie is a tit for tat, garish, in your face, vivid pink, neon blue, Asian movie gushes of blood, free for all revengesploitation of the most wicked kind.
Best part EVER? When Abby suits up for war and the final touch of her outfit is slap bracelets. Oh hello 80s fashion, how I’ve missed you.
A must for exploitation fans everywhere.