Some folks may say Saw started the torture-porn genre, but if that’s true, then HOSTEL cranked it up and made it explode onto the scene. If you’ve ever traveled overseas, Hostel is definitely the film you don’t want to watch the night before. The premise is unsuspecting backpackers get taken and are subject to, well, pretty much anything. There is an exclusive club that if you are rich enough, you can pay to torture and/or kill your hapless tied up victims. The first half of the movie shows our two friends enjoying the vacation life where they happen to meet a couple local gals which we know won’t end well. Ultimately, we see what fate has in store: ending up in a grimy, dirty, dark, underground tunnel with torture rooms where the payers have free reign. The fact you can meet someone on a train in passing and they end up being a sadistic psycho with hidden desires can be pretty true to life, such as the case with one of the first folks we meet. Legend has it Eli Roth, the director, was inspired when he stumbled across a website that actually offered a real ‘murder vacation’ to folks willing to pay enough $$ to kill, but didn’t know if the site was real or not. After debating making a documentary where he would investigate the website's authenticity he (smartly) decided not to go down that rabbit hole and made this film instead. One can only wonder what that could have been like; he may have ended up as one of the tenants. All in all, good flick at the beginning of the genre, with enough gruesome scenes to make you lock your door.
SLASH SCENE: The eye
SLASH SCORE: 4/5