InsidePulse DVD Review – The Hills Have Eyes: Unrated

Alexandre Aja

Ted Levine….Big Bob
Kathleen Quinlan….Ethel
Dan Byrd….Bobby
Emilie de Ravin….Brenda
Aaron Stanford….Doug
Vinessa Shaw….Lynn
Maisie Camilleri Preziosi….Baby Catherine

The Movie

Grégory Levasseur and Alexandre Aja are sick human beings. There is something inherently wrong with these men, so much so that they should be kept under surveillance for a long time. They, of course, are the creators of High Tension, a disturbing piece of work that set new standards for how death works in film. They bring us The Hills Have Eyes, in which they not only up the level of gruesomeness, but also bring some ridiculously disturbing moments to film.

Big Bob, who will now be known as just “Bob”, is taking the entire family on a vacation. Not one to spend big, Bob is driving with his trusty Winnebago in tow. The thing has no air conditioning according to Doug, the son-in-law that Bob isn’t too fond of. Doug’s wife, Lynn is tending to their baby, Catherine while Doug fruitlessly tries to repair the air conditioning. Bobby, Bob’s younger son, come in a fixes the air conditioning in no time while Bob’s young daughter Brenda complains about everything. Ethel is the aimless wife.

While traveling they stop at a run down gas station to fill up and it seems everyone gets ridiculously comfortable at said gas station. Lynn pokes around a little too much, angering the gas attendant, who then gives Bob a “shortcut” to save time. Bob takes his tip and soon the whole family is thrust into chaos as a spike strip blows out the tires.

Bob, being a retired cop, has two guns on him. He gives one to Bobby who fires off some rounds in a decision he would come to regret. They decide that Bob will walk one way and Doug the other looking for help. After a while, Doug comes back with a whole bunch of new toys that he found in a crater. This would be a good time to mention that they are smack dab in the center of a former nuclear testing site.

Soon enough the family is attacked by some nasty looking people that I will refer to as mutants. From there it is a race for survival with a certain scene setting a new standard for morally disgusting cinematic experiences.

The acting is what it is. This is a horror flick and you will rarely find a best actor award coming out of them. The only performance of note is Doug, who goes from dorky idiot to something completely different by the end of the film.

All in all, this isn’t a bad movie, it’s just lacking. Lacking what? I can’t say for certain, but blowing people’s faces off and mutilation doesn’t make up for it.

Score: 7/10

The Audio

5.1 Dolby Digital: Sounds as nasty as it looks.

The Video

2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen: Looks like a horror movie! No transfer problems.

The Extras

Surviving The Hills: Making of “The Hills Have Eyes” – The usual “Making Of” feature, explaining in great detail the process of working with Wes Craven through the makeup process for the mutants.

Production Diaries – These are different featurettes showing the work done in the film and the culture they came into while filming in Morocco. The irritating thing is that most of these diaries feature things already shown in the “Making Of” feature. The worst thing from extras is repetitiveness. Mission accomplished.

Music Video “Leave The Broken Hearts” by The Finalist – Well I think you get the gist from the title.

Score: 5/10

InsidePulse’s Ratings for The Hills Have Eyes: Unrated
(OUT OF 10)