HURT (2018) Review, Fantasia 2018

Hurt Movie Review

Played July 26th – Directed by Sonny Mallhi, Canada

Plot: Rose (Emily van Raay) moves into a house in the woods close to her sister after her boyfriend gets deployed and things don’t go right when Halloween night arrives.

Writer-director Sonny Mallhi has previously given us ANGUISH and FAMILY BLOOD, but it’s interesting to note he was a producer on some big name projects before that, including THE STRANGERS and the Keanu Reeves time travel romance THE LAKE HOUSE. Which, for the record, I think was an amazing film regardless of what anyone says.

HURT has an awesome switch at the 10-minute mark. Without giving it away, this “twist” needs to be praise because for a while I was under the assumption I had started watching the wrong movie or that someone had written the wrong description of the plot. But no, everything works out exactly as it should.

The film deals with the trauma of war and post-traumatic stress in a realistic way that few films do. Now, of course, being a horror film it has to go to extremes a little bit and get darker in places than may be necessary. But even tackling the subject at all deserves praise. Many, many films glorify war and combat, but very few actually mention what happens to the men (and women) who survive. Sometimes the war never ends. What was the last great film in this vein? BORN ON THE FOURTH OF JULY?

The movie incorporates the built-in scares of a theme park (sort of like HOUSE OF 1000 CORPSES in that respect, but better executed here). This is clever, and adds tension and jump scares in ways that make sense without seeming gratuitous. All in all, the tone is right and the film is well-executed. Perhaps not conventional, but certainly not short on talent.

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