The Hunter (15)
Time Out rating:
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Time Out says
Tue Jul 3 2012The last Tasmanian tiger died in Hobart Zoo in 1936, but that hasn’t stopped ecologists and mystery-seekers scouring the island’s hinterland for rumoured survivors. It’s an intriguing possibility – but hardly the stuff of blockbuster cinema. Willem Dafoe plays Martin, a huntsman-for-hire paid by a pharmaceutical firm to track down the tiger for genetic experimentation. But when Martin arrives at his digs in a remote town on the edge of the wilderness, he finds a broken family and a community on the verge of collapse. ‘The Hunter’ contains some interesting ideas and conflicts – Dafoe’s relationship with Lucy (Frances O’Connor), the messed-up mother of the family, is beautifully sketched – and its ecological themes are never heavy-handed. It’s gorgeously shot, too, and performances are solid. But the central tiger hunt never feels critical enough, either to the characters or the audience, and a number of logical lapses undermine the seriousness with which director Daniel Nettheim tells his tale. Worthwhile but unsatisfying.
Author: Tom Huddleston