Donate Now to Support KDHX

Listen Live
Monday, 29 November 1999 19:00
Local opening date: 9/21/2007
Reviewed by Diane Carson
Many of us film fans are partial to dramatic films that integrate real political scenarios and address injustice in their fictional stories. I think of the Last King of Scotland and Hotel Rwanda, for example, and the upcoming Trade which exposes the repulsive international sex trafficking. Writer/director Richard Shepard The Hunting Party is in that group, taking the hunt for infamous Bosnian war criminals as its catalyst.

The story hangs on veteran, foolishly daring reporter Simon Hunt (Richard Gere) and his cameraman called Duckie (Terrence Howard) as they pursue the notorious killer called The Fox who ordered the rape and murder of numerous Muslims. As our naïve young surrogate and some comic relief, son of a network V.P., Benjamin tags along, wide eyed and disbelieving. Palpable tension and a brisk pace hook us on the story shot partially on location in Croatia.

Voiceover narration by Duck establishes his relationship with Simon in many previous war spots: Somalia, Iraq, El Salvador. When Simon answers several live TV questions in a shockingly unprofessional way, he's fired and Duck is promoted upstairs to studio work. Happenstance takes Duck back to Bosnia and the Republic of Serpsa where Simon reappears, hooking him on insiders' information and a tantalizing chance to interview The Fox. The chase is on.

Based on real incidents, The Hunting Party is weakened politically by its focus on Hunt's revenge motive, revealed as events unfold, and the foregrounding of some truly silly confrontation scenes, especially a couple bar episodes. Such distractions push the meritorious indictments of appallingly wan attempts to capture war criminals too far into the background. Similarly, a mocking tone undermines what would be better served as straight-forward information, inexcusable at face value, including CIA and other US actions. I'm thinking of the opening titles that announce, "Only the most ridiculous part of this story are true" and some comments before the closing credits. Just seeing the 1984 Olympic Village and the Sarajevo buildings riddled with bullets and explosions will continue to disgust any aware viewer.

The Hunting Party is professionally done-well shot, editing, and acted by Gere and Howard, in particular. It makes a stunning change for writer/director Richard Shepard from his hilarious The Matador. And even with its compromises, it's refreshing to have a high caliber film not flinch from harsh political commentary. Primarily in English but with some Serbian with English subtitles. At area theatres.

Sponsor Message

Become a Sponsor

Find KDHX Online

KDHX on Instagram
KDHX on YouTube
KDHX on SoundCloud
KDHX on Facebook
KDHX on Twitter
KDHX on flickr

Local Artist Spotlight


Search Parties

Tue September 9

KDHX Recommends

September
Saturday
20

The Thin Dimes at Harvest Sessions 2014

The Thin Dimes at Harvest Sessions 2014 Harvest Sessions welcomes the old-time country blues of the Thin Dimes for this weekend's concert in the park. This free Saturday morning concert series takes place at the Tower Grove Farmers' Market, and runs May through...


September
Saturday
20

Tower of Song: A Tribute to Leonard Cohen and 80th Birthday Party

Tower of Song: A Tribute to Leonard Cohen and 80th Birthday Party Leonard Cohen started out as a poet, and poetry -- ecstatic, spiritual, erotic and political -- suffuses all of his work. When he launched a career as a songwriter and singer in the '60s, only Bob Dylan could match his visionary...


September
Saturday
20

Lee Fields and The Expressions

KDHX welcomes Lee Fields and The Expressions to 2720 Cherokee on Saturday, September 20 at 8pm.   Tickets on sale now at www.ticketweb.com.


Get Answers!

If you have questions or need to contact KDHX, visit our answers portal at answers.kdhx.org.

Online Users

7 users and 14857 guests online
Sign in with Facebook

SYSTEM: S5 Box

Login/My Account

Sign in with Facebook