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REVIEW – Hatchet II (2010)

September 14, 2011

Videovista have my review of Adam Green’s latter-day slasher film Hatchet II.

I requested Hatchet II because I had heard great things coming out of the film’s US screenings. Having enjoyed Hatchet’s ironic humour, I was hoping that Hatchet II might push the boat out that little bit further and be maybe just a little bit sillier, a little bit gorier and a little bit funnier.  Instead, I discovered a film that caused me to reconsider my view of the original film.  Suddenly I was reminded of that scene in The Simpsons episode where Moe builds a tunnel from the fashionable waterfront district to his bar in the slums in order to lure in yuppies. “Hey, this isn’t faux dive… this is a dive”.  Upon watching Hatchet II, I thought of Hatchet and exclaimed “Hey, this isn’t faux schlock… this is schlock!”:

Unfortunately, because Green struggles with both the campier elements and the more serious moments, Hatchet II never manages to find that sweet spot between postmodern irony and absolute sincerity. Because it is impossible to know when the film is being intentionally awful and when it is merely being awful, Hatchet II‘s moments of intentional self-parody feel more like defence mechanisms designed to allow the filmmakers to cry ‘irony’ whenever their attempts at tension and human drama fall wide of the mark. This makes for an uncomfortably defensive cinematic experience, like sharing a drink with someone who keeps putting himself down in the hope that you’ll tell him how wonderful he is.

Avoid it like the proverbial.

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