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August 19, 2012

Movie Review: The Hunter (2012)

Thylacine is an animal that presumably went extinct in the early 1930s. Also known as the Tasmanian tiger, it was a small dog-like marsupial that survived in Australia and Tasmania. Thousands of sightings have been reported since its extinction, but none have been confirmed. The search for the last remaining Tasmanian tiger is the basis for The Hunter.

Martin David (Willem Dafoe) is the best mercenary money can buy. You get that from a simple transaction that takes place in the beginning of the film. He is sent to the Tasmanian jungle to hunt down the last Tasmanian tiger for a very secretive biotech company. He stays a room in a house occupied by a depressed woman and her son and daughter. Martin sticks to business, but not for very long.

Sam Neill is the head of a logging company that threatens the wilderness, but he seems to have the family's best interests at heart. He's wary of Martin, but he keeps his distance. Martin is equally suspicious, but he tries to focus on his work. Martin gets more and more involved with the family, and the truth about his job, the family and many other things start to present themselves.

The story moves along slowly, but it does move. There isn't a single element that doesn't belong. I stayed interested throughout the film. I'm not a Sam Neill fan, so it was easy for me to dislike his character, although I still can't decide if I should have or not. There were some rough and sad moments throughout the story that I won't spoil, and they are compelling. The end of The Hunter was very satisfying to me, as I felt that I would have acted as Martin did. Overall, a good flick. It kept my mind working and held my interest.

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