Friday, May 29, 2020

The Hunt

By Scott Shackford - May 29, 2020 at 06:00AM

The Hunt is a movie that intended to use the familiar, vicious fiction trope of the rich hunting the poor for sport to offer a satirical take on modern politics. The hunters in this case (led by a brittle, vengeful Hilary Swank) are liberal urban elites. The victims are so-called "deplorables" (yes, the term is used) who espouse populist conservative rhetoric.

A dozen of these Trumpists are kidnapped and forced to run or fight for their lives. Most participants end up brutally killed, with Crystal (Betty Gilpin) as the final "red state" survivor attempting to bring the whole sick scheme down.

The movie was supposed to be released in August 2019, but the trailers drew fire from conservatives (including President Donald Trump), who believed The Hunt was deliberately fostering hatred toward them. It finally got its theatrical release in March.

The outrage was undeserved; the right-wing critics missed the point of this apparent product of the Hollywood leftists they hate and fear. It is very clear in The Hunt that we're not supposed to be rooting for the petty, whiny, privileged hunters, who talk in the language of social justice buzzwords and are, indeed, the villains of the story. The deplorables may be under-educated blowhards who believe in conspiracies, but they are obviously the victims. Crystal—partly because she eschews politics entirely—is the only character worth rooting for.


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