Watching Hostel Part II is like having a small, weak child tapping on your forehead for ninety-four minutes. It sucks from the get-go… Then you get antsy… Then it starts to burn a little bit… Then you get REALLY pissed off. Boredom is one thing, but there are many constant and shifting levels of boredom at play here. It’s a boredom buffet. I couldn’t make up my mind what to be bored at next!
And we have Eli Roth to thank for this. To call him “The Dane Cook of Horror Movies” is an insult to Dane Cook, alright? And I fucking HATE Dane Cook. At least Cook has an objective and achieves it on occasion, whether or not I think it’s funny. But Eli Roth breaks EVERY SINGLE PROMISE a horror film is supposed to make.
He’s the Ryan Seacrest of Horror Movies. Compulsively bland, completely lethargic, and INEXPLICABLY EMPLOYED!
Have you seen the first Hostel? Then you don’t have to subject yourself to HOSTEL 2: TORTURE BOOGALOO, which is an exact carbon copy of the original, except the torturees are women. Congratulations must be extended to Mr. Roth, who finally figured out that penises are different from vaginas at thirty-five years of age.
The story this time around centers on Drunky, (Bijou Philips) Blandy (Lauren German), and Waterhead (Heather Matarazzo). They’re art school students in Rome who venture to Prague and get swept up into Slovakia where the two frat boys and their pet Icelandic man Oli met much grisliness in the first film. We are jackhammered and benumbed by these three uninteresting women for a good solid thirty minutes of NOTHING HAPPENING! We begin to hate these women, for Blandy doesn’t say or do anything worth the sweat off a dead hobo’s sack, Waterhead subjects us to a piss-poor Willow Rosenberg impression, and Drunky IS PLAYED BY BIJOU PHILIPS! Whether Roth does this to callously harden us for the torture, I’ll leave to you, but I wouldn’t put it past that asshole.
So naturally, same said grisliness must befall these three young, annoying stock characters. An actual Internet bidding war erupts among the wealthy businessmen over the three girls, organized by the shadowy, nameless organization running the torture dungeon.
The torture and death is much worse the second time around… No, not in gore terms, for Roth proves himself as a complete wuss with the amount of cutaways that will leave gorehounds mourning their lost ten bucks. It’s worse because the misogynist tendencies on display in the middle of the road original Hostel and the excruciating Cabin Fever are now intentional and fully aware.
ATTENTION: SPOILERS AHEAD
The first one to bite it is Waterhead, who is hung nude from the ceiling over a bathtub. Then a lady comes in, strips naked, lies in the tub, and starts poking the hanging girl with a scythe, bathing in her blood Elizabeth Bathory-style. Now were this made by some jackass who didn’t know what he was doing, I’d have called this the most blatantly misogynistic scene to come out of mainstream horror films in America … pretty much ever. But come on. Roth has his indulgent Uncle Quentin behind him. Roth just proves he’s a preening, callow punk, trying to push buttons without regard for WHY certain buttons need to be pushed. It dawned on me during this scene that I was watching a movie directed by a kid who ate his own boogers for nickels in the school cafeteria. You’re not offended because he’s too stupid to be embarrassed. You’re just pissed off you’re sitting next to him.
It gets worse, with Drunky being made up like a skank for her torturer while being taunted with a buzzsaw and Blandy being made up to look like her torturer’s wife. Now there are gonna be some who say “Hey, it’s okay, because one of the girls gets away at the end and cuts off her captor’s Wedding Tackle.” Yeah, right. Someone’s actually gonna be stupid enough to think that a poorly edited, blurry, and essentially bloodless castration is gonna make up for about eighty prior minutes of runny shit after runny shit after runny shit on the female gender. I’m imagining someone wandering through the desert, clutching their last supplies, believing them as irrefutable proof that they will survive.
“Well, it’s about a hundred-twenty in the shade out here, I stopped sweating a half an hour ago, and I can literally feel my eyeballs evaporating… BUT I GOT GRAPE JAM AND A PAIR OF SOCKS, SO I’M GONNA BE OKAY!”
So the gore is riddled with cutaways, we don’t care about the characters, the acting is awful, (especially by Matarazzo and Philips) there’s nothing on the technical side to write home about, and the screenplay is like it’s written by Josef Mengele on one of his “saucy” days. This is all tethered around the fact that torture, as a horror film device is JUST PLAIN FUCKING BORING! Honestly, how many ways can you film someone being tied or handcuffed to a chair while someone administers cookie cutter tortures? It’s just grue and stickiness with no real invention. How is this fun? Or scary? It’s just stupid.
And I can picture Roth strutting behind the camera like he’s big as Billy Be-Damned when he’s just the little kid who pusses out when he has to say “Candyman” in front of the mirror for the fifth time. His preoccupation with torture, his willingness to drop us into an expository No Man’s Land of dullness, and his incapability to move us one way or another just goes to show that he doesn’t have the brains, doesn’t have the guts, and doesn’t have the fucking SACK to make a real horror film.
Though it’s not like he’s ever even tried.
Hostel Part II is fucking worthless.
Zero Stars out of 4