The Hunting Party (2007)
The Worst Film Ever
Memorable, crazy movie
This movie was so-so. It had it's moments, but wasn't the greatest.
The best films of this genre always show a path and provide a takeaway for being a better person.
In a way, it's interesting that Richard Gere plays a character that seems out of his comfort zone - loser alcoholic journalist deep in debt. It sounds more like a George Clooney character. But this one's no Clooney movie. Its plot is a bit like the movie that ends up being made in Altman's "The Player" - start with a good, non-commercial script, and then add all the Hollywood clichés that ruin it all."The Hunting Party" seems like a movie that doesn't know what it wants to be. Is it a comedy? If so, how do you reconcile that with the drama of war and genocide, and Gere's character's personal drama? Is it a serious movie? Well, quite a few things are hard to take seriously (the ending is one of them :) ). "Syriana" is one example of how to do a movie with political commentary right, but that didn't try to be goofy *and* meaningful.So, all in all, an uneven movie with some good moments. The Esquire article that inspired it is worth a read, too - of course, the real life events were not as spectacular as in the movie. And you won't find some of the "outrageous" parts that the movie claims are true there :).
I am not familiar with the history of Serbia and neighboring countries but both the historic aspect and cinematic aspect seem to be poorly handled in this movie. Maybe the producer has some agenda here.Three people hunting for a dangerous criminal in a dangerous place. Without any planning whatsoever! Hunt's friend who has pretty much moved on suddenly decides to throw away his career and join Hunt in this wild goose chase! Not at all convincing. Very weak story. Also portraying Muslims of Bosnia as good folks and Serbians as bloodthirsty scums seems unfair. It's unlikely that in a war things could be so black and white.
Making successful movies on civil wars is always a difficult task demanding dedication to the idea of objectiveness and complexity needed for artistic perception of madness that surrounds the tragedy of such conflict. This movie fails on so much levels that it can hardly be enumerated. Firstly, the script is so simplified and shows deeply misunderstanding of not only Bosnian, but probably any civil war conflict at all. In order to make a distinctive movie you must firstly avoid stereotype on solely bad and good guys, because that this is not a comic book, but real life in all of its cruelty and sorrow.The peoples of Bosnia have been living for centuries together and have the same genetic origin. This is important to say, because this movie shows one people as ugly bunch of cavemen including even children. There are words in the script that the main characters must be careful when they leave Bosnian capital Sarajevo because they enter into the land of raping and murdering. Thus we have a superhero dressed as a reporter who faces with the biggest horrors in the Earth in his efforts to find and capture the villain and the movie clearly suggests us that all of this people are villains and that there is no difference between them at all. With such a bad script acting stays irrelevant. The acting is in the service of propaganda unworthy of beautiful art of film making.
I gave this movie 1/10, even though it's not that bad at all, and I know it. First of all, I want you to know something, before you think I'm just being unreal. I was too young to be emotionally involved with this war, while it lasted. Second, my grandmother was Croatian, my grandfather was Slovak and my father's parents are Serbian/Slovak, so I consider myself an 'ethnical chaos' and thus have no nationalistic views. That war was just wrong, and innocent men, women and children (on BOTH sides) died for someone's 'higher interests'. There is no truth. There ARE many, covered with blood, and they all deserve to be heard. Instead, I'm watching the same ol' scenario over the years - the 'all American' scenario. So, here comes the brave and daring Richard Gere, with the famous American justice seeking thirst (ha!) in his guts and Chuck Norris as his idol. He is on his way to get his revenge (and, just for the sake of it, his career back) over a war criminal responsible for massacre over an entire Muslim village (and not just one), and Gere's sweetheart who was (oh, boy, was this unexpected...) pregnant with his child. Even if this movie brings up a good point, it is well known a long time ago. Even if it was made for good causes, they are pushed aside by the anger that every Balkan inhabitant feels when he sees a trailer about an upcoming blockbuster with the one and only (american) peacemakers. I am so sick of it! And I'm sure many decent Americans are sick of it as well!Of course, no one forced me to watch it, my bad... I can promise you one - it won't happen again.