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Hostel (2006)

January. 06,2006
| Horror

Three backpackers head to a Slovakian city that promises to meet their hedonistic expectations, with no idea of the hell that awaits them.


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Good movie but grossly overrated



Erica Derrick

By the time the dramatic fireworks start popping off, each one feels earned.

Mandeep Tyson

The acting in this movie is really good.

Paul Magne Haakonsen

This Eli Roth movie is pretty straight forward in terms of horror and gorefest movies go, so don't expect to be blown away by anything remotely revolutionary.The storyline was predictable, but still have enough gore and gruesomeness to make it watchable.Granted that the movie was predictable and generic, then it was well worth sitting through it to watch the gruesome torture scenes and the inventive ways that writer and director Eli Roth came up with ways of how to inflict bodily harm and pain upon people. With scenes such as these, then it is a make or break whether or not the scenes are believable and can make the audience cringe. Eli Roth is certainly good at making the audience cringe.The characters in the movie were actually quite nicely fleshed out, pardon the pun. More than others, obviously. I will say that Jay Hernandez actually carried the movie quite nicely throughout the entire course of the movie.I remember watching this movie when it was first released, and I was somewhat impressed back in the day. However, after revisiting it now some 13 years later, I am not all that impressed anymore. The movie is still entertaining, but in terms of storyline and plot it was mediocre. It is the grotesque torture that keeps the movie afloat.


Long answer: Eli Roth jettisons the satirical potential of his screenplay in favour of... not a lot to be honest. The thing is, the torture scenes, while repugnant and disgusting, mercifully don't take up too much of the film. As a result, this is mainly a film consisting of 3 repulsive guys going around objectifying women and having sex, before as always in a horror film their search for action leads to a very bad place indeed. I have heard this film described as a satire or sociopolitical commentary of some sort, and there is something there for sure. The trouble is, there just isn't an awful lot to Hostel. It's nasty and mean-spirited but mostly it's just tedious. There are intense moments but there's not enough atmosphere; basically, the film just wonders what to do with itself for an hour before exhausting the viewer with endless torture porn towards the end. It is undeniably disturbing and the acting is good for a horror film. There's definitely an element of fear, but Eli Roth, although his direction is perfectly fine, didn't quite manage to back up his ideas with a decent script. Watch Saw instead (The first one, not those awful sequels).4/10

Kate Rios

I sat through this movie with a guy after I stupidly suggested we watch something scary. I meant paranormal, not entirely predictable but anyways... So basically the plot is these guys go on a trip and then decide to go to this random ass little town that looks sketchy as hell because some skinny drugged up looking scary kid tells them of all the beautiful women who are pretty much sex starved for American men. It sounds like the beginning of porn, right? Well...It's a trap. So anyways, the men pay to murder guys at this place, and the women are just the way to lure the stupid men in to their death and then almost all the characters die. If you like gore you might like this movie though. You can put all deeper meanings behind it as well, I guess. I mean...it wasn't my cup of tea...


In Europe to party, several US backpackers and a local guide get wind a special club where they'll get more than they've ever bargained for when they realize the disturbing and terrifying secret behind the club's operation and try to find of getting away alive.This was a massively disappointing effort. One of the film's main flaws is that there's way too much time spent away from its actual destination in the titular torture room, and as a result it's pacing is just way too problematic in the first half. It's at least twenty minutes before they even get wind of the idea of going to the country, there's a big search through the city to find the place and takes another half-hour after that before any sort of on-screen torture occurs, leaving it's torture scenes, which are the main body of the film, until almost an hour in. That's way too long for the film to get to it's big spot, and it's beginning is just boring and really hard to sit through. The few attempts at suspense with the disappearing members don't have much in them as nothing is played up there, and that there's way too much wandering around with obviously shady characters is just eating up time that could be better spent on the real reason to see the film. There's even several problems with the torture scenes in this one is that there's hardly any of them in the film. There's three that amount to a total of five minutes of screen-time, which is really infuriating, and with the exception of one sequence none of the violence is done on-screen and there's just after-effects which really narrows the violence down significantly. The last huge flaw in the torture scenes is that there's more kills and violence away from them than there are in the scenes. The three torture scenes amount to one death and two escapes, yet there's a half-dozen away from them, and that really devalues the mystique and aura this has when one sequence easily tops anything done in the titular hostel. These here are what really holds this one back, though there's a really great sequence from time-to-time. That here is mainly due to the final half in the torture buildings as the main torture scene does have a really chilling quality to it due to the unexpected in a dark, unknown location, and the sight of watching them get tortured with being prodded, poked and sliced up or even showing fingers getting sliced off with a chainsaw isn't that bad. What happens to the third torture victim is easily the best, which looks great and doesn't feel fake at all, which is a great scene in itself which helps to really make it quite the gruesome moment. Likewise, the last part of the film is it's best, as it's where there's a couple of big action scenes in some fine chases to get out of the facility and generates some more bloody deaths. The last big plus is that there's a nice helping of nudity from the cast, which is never a bad thing to behold. This, though, is a massively disappointing and boring film.Rated R: Extreme Graphic Language, Extreme Graphic Violence, Full Nudity, several sex scenes and heavy drug use.