Reasons Why I'll Never See Hostel 

by Ismael Manzano


      This is not a movie review.  You will never read a review for this movie with my name or any name that sounds similar to it in this or any other website.  Would you like to know why?  Simply my friends, family, and devoted fan—the one inside my head: I am not crazy nor a sociopath nor a person without love in his life nor a someone whose had one too many self-administered electroshock treatments. 

     The movie Hostel, from what I’ve read, is pretty much a glorified snuff film!  Like it’s predecessor, Saw, Hostel seems to be a movie entirely devoted to making gore as realistic and painful to watch as possible. 

     Films, horror films in particular—from my point of view as a consumer—are supposed to be about taking yourself out of your current reality and vicariously living in another through the story unfolding before our eyes.  As the watcher, you can become the hero that fights to save the day, or the villain—if you relate more to him/her—that attempts to thwart the hero’s success, or the plucky comic relief that says the lines you were think about, but would never actually say in real life.  Movies are supposed to be a trip into another place. 

     So with that said, what kind of sick freak would want to visit the place depicted in the movie Hostel, a movie where the premise is all about torturing people.  TORTURING PEOPLE!!  Why would you want to get into that? 

     Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I’ve never seen a movie that I knew was all about violence just to get out frustration or sex just to get out frustration or something really stupid because I feel the need to laugh at something stupid so I don’t cry about something important.  Hell, I watched Natural Born Killers and laughed my ass off—okay, I didn’t say I was completely normal either.  But the violence in that movie was highly stylized and done in such a cartoonish way that it was almost impossible not to laugh.  The focus of the story wasn’t really the violence, but the way society glorifies violence—see, I can make an argument for anything in my own favor.  Plus, it had some funny moments. 

     I think movies like Hostel and Saw prompt a disturbing trend in society: graphic violence for the sake of graphic violence.  Now, granted, I’ve never seen the movie, and I doubt I ever will.  I have no desire to see it.  So maybe I’m wrong about the movie having no plot.  But I’m going from the previews and from word of mouth: two of the best ways to judge a movie.  If the people advertising the movie are focusing their efforts on making the movie look at gory and violent as possible—in one ad stating that an ambulance had to be called due to an audience member’s reaction to the film—then obviously they’re going with what they feel is the strong point of the movie.  And if that their strong point, I’m not interested. 

     Anyway, loyal fan, until I have find something else that I can’t do and know little about to criticize….


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