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The Hunter by Daniel Nettheim

The Hunter by Daniel Nettheim

NOTE: It’s been a month and a half or so since I’ve seen a new movie. The production is still going and I’m learning a lot but it is my intention to keep up with this blog. A new idea occurred to me that I can start a new category of shorter reviews where I’ll just write bullet points. So in cases where I’m on a job, I will do this but otherwise my primary intention is to write a long review.  So here we go…

Plot summary: Martin, a mercenary, is sent from Europe by a mysterious biotech company to the Tasmanian wilderness on a hunt for the last Tasmanian tiger.

Willem Dafoe carries the entire film with a quiet natural performance. You simply believe him as a hunter/mercenary, particular in the physical way how he moves in the wilderness, handles the tools and weapons. He brings the heart to an otherwise cold story with all its philosophical cerebral themes.

This is an existential loner movie. It presents a lone man against nature as an overwhelming void that the hero must face, come out of it and find some meaning to life. The story asks this of it’s protagonist and also the audience. And for that, The Hunter gives back as much as the viewer is willing to invest into it. The film’s themes cover a variety of things including corporate greed, man vs. nature, man’s purpose in the empty universe and what is humanity. Yes it’s a thinking man’s movie. So for any viewers who may not want to put in so much work, it could be a tame experience.

I merely focused on the the human story about the protagonist regaining his humanity, which gripped me. I regretted that I did not invest enough into The Hunter on the first viewing to get the satisfaction from its philosophical themes. For that, I plan to watch it again.

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