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“Hostile” Looking to Survive




Review by John Delia

Have you ever watched a movie and the acting was just okay, but the story and production were so compelling you lasted through it? Well, I have another one for you. It’s called Hostile and it has just been released on DVD. I do like the actors however, as they are fresh faces in a world of repeat performers who have dominated the screen. With better direction and a better remix of the plot, this film could have been a real standout. In the meantime if you like films that have cannibals and the look of a Mad Max thriller, combined with a romance that has a decent plot, then check this one out.
Now, just so you know, this could have been two different films. One of a romance between a drug addict and a rich single guy who saves her. The other a horror flick about a woman who finds herself in the middle of no man’s land trying to fight off a freak of biology that likes human flesh. The two are connected by Juliette the main character in each and the time period in which they are set. The two stories are intertwined and flash back and forth throughout the movie.

Gregory Fitoussi as jack and Brittany Ashworth as Juliette in HOSTILE

The film opens with Juliette (Brittany Ashworth) riding on a road with the landscape looking like an apocalypse event has taken place, and it has. Terrorists have used biochemical warfare to destroy most of the world and there are 26 survivors from the attack grouped in what is called “The Nest”. Juliette is a member of the group and has been assigned to travel outside The Nest to find food. She is armed with a hand gun and travels during the day so the cannibals that have developed from the biochemical gas that was used, do not get her. On her way back to The Nest she finds herself incapacitated with darkness approaching and her time running out.

Juliette (Brittany Ashworth) gets cornered in HOSTILE

Things flash through her mind and she thinks back to a time before the apocalypse. Here we find Juliette with Jack (Gregory Fitoussi) a rich high society art dealer who had met her by chance. The film goes from there as it plays out under the direction of Mathieu Turi who also wrote the script. It’s a daring screenplay as Turi tries to run lateral plots that he plans to unite at a later time in the movie. Not many films have really succeeded using this method as it loses the audience in boredom waiting for the action to take place. His apocalypse is very good and if you are a thrill fan the film oozes with it during that portion of the movie. The romance storyline does have an intriguing plot however, but it seems to be going nowhere because of unknowns that do not develop until late in the movie.

Brittany Ashworth as Juliette in HOSTILE

The acting by Britany Ashworth and Gregory Fitoussi makes the film work as long as you understand that the two stories will have meaning in the end. Ashworth takes on two roles, the rough drug user and dealer in the romance where she’s about to “check out” on the world until she meets Jack who thinks he can change her life. Her very existence centers on her drug habit and pleasing herself no matter who finds her attractive and willing to help her. It’s a tough role to play, but Ashworth nails it showing the “street” in Juliette that’s very hard to extract. When she ends up as one of the survivors of the apocalypse, she doubles down on her hardnosed persona and makes that part of the film work best.

Fitoussi puts his talents to work in the romance portion of the film where we find his Jack a determined man who when he sees something he wants he takes it. He likes the idea of trying to save Juliette from her dependency on drugs and crooks, and for that challenge his Jack finds the going rough. Being wealthy he feels he has the edge on making a life with Juliette, but he never expects that fate will step in and put him in a spot where he may fail.

Hostile has not been rated by the MPAA, but contains language, drug use, and extreme bloody violence. I do like the opening song “The House of the Rising Sun” as it’s apropos. Nice job on the way they handle the apocalypse scenes, but it’s not enough to make the film a winner. You can watch the movie on DVD, VOD and Digital HD.

FINAL ANALYSIS: A good film with flaws that include an improbable ending. (2.5 out of 4 Stars)

Specifications and additional video information:
Cast: Brittany Ashworth, Gregory Fitoussi, Javier Botet
Director and writer: Mathieu Turi
MPAA Rating: Not Rated, language, violence, drugs
Genre: Drama, Horror, Thriller
Running Time: 1 hr. 23 min.
Video Release Date: September 4, 2018
Language: English
Reviewed Format: DVD
Audio: Dolby 2.0 stereo and 5.1 surround
Video: 16×9 Widescreen, Aspect ratio 2.39:1
Subtitles: None
Number of Discs: 1 disc
Distributed by: 4 Digital Media
Released in: DVD, VOD and Digital HD

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