I am not a huge fan of the increasing fad of "torture horror" films. I saw Hostel one night and Saw as well just to say that I did it. I don't enjoy the films because it's such a feeling of pointlessness to me. Give me story-lines and artistic blood patterns, villains with depth and heroes that aren't just dumb big boobed bimbos. But I digress. Hostel while in the torture genre is still a rather disturbing bit of film.
3 backpackers are in Europe doing the usual sex club, brothel thing. They meet a gross looking kid who claims there is a brothel filled with beautiful woman who will do whatever you want. The boys are captivated and go to the city. The stay in hostel with 2 seemingly perfect slave girls who tempt the boys into going to the spa and then having sex. What a vacation. The next morning their foreign pal goes missing but they receive a text from him with a strange picture of his head and a smokestack behind it saying he has left. We soon find his head is decaptitated. The boys decide to leave but somehow end up at the disco with the weird girls anyways. They are both drugged and Josh goes back to the hostel and Paxton gets locked in some kind of alleyway or something strange. Paxton wakes up and finds Josh gone. Josh has been tortured and killed by the Dutch business man they met earlier in the film on the train. Paxton decides to go to the weirdo slut girls and find out some info. They tell him they will take him to his friend.
They pull up at an old factory. Paxton goes in and sees room after room of people being tortured and killed. Then he gets attacked by some burly men and he too is put into a room undergoing a nauseating scene of torture. Paxton manages to kill his torturer and escape in the end committing a violent payback against the dutch business man who tortured and killed Josh.
The thing about this movie that makes me feel the most grossed out, is just the environment. Eastern europe is not given a very good name these days and this film certainly doesn't help. The disgusting atmosphere of the factory just makes me feel very uneasy. The torture scenes weren't as bad as I expected them to be, but the after scenes of the burly men chopping up bodies and hosing down bloody tables I think is more difficult to watch.
It is valiant the way that Paxton escapes and his payback at the end is very satisfying. The scene where he makes it into the locker room and dons a businessman's suit is also especially creepy. He talks with a man waiting to torture his victim and seeks advice from Paxton on how he should do it. Paxton suggests he make it quick as possible. Of course we later find that man taking a blow torch to an Asian girls eye so obviously he didn't listen.
But this idea of business men paying absurd amounts of money to kill someone is very creepy. Eli Roth says that his inspiration for the film came when he came across a Thai website giving patrons the ability to torture and kill someone for $10,000. That alone is terrifying and this movie only brings that terror further into your consciousness.
So all in all I think it one of the better torture movies although I still would pass up watching it again. Something about it just makes me feel sick, and I really don't think it's the gore.
Buy Hostel at Horror Movie Empire