Hatchet: A Look At The Franchise

FILM REVIEW: HATCHET PARTS 1-3

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I find the Hatchet franchise to be a bloody good time! While I’m not terribly frightened by the films there are a few jump scares that made my heart skip a beat, but mostly the excessive gore and use of practical effects takes me to place where I appreciate the work involved and fine skills utilized in making these films.

Each Hatchet film (parts 1 through 3 and a 4th movie named Victor Crowley) aims to outdo the gore of the one before it. The crew effectively pulls this off by literally pulling off limbs and heads and other body parts off throughout each film. If Hatchet sough to be remembered for its creative kills, it has held up very well all these years later.

The story centers around Victor Crowley, a distorted and grotesque child who is set on fire by 3 locals. Housed in the swamps of the Louisiana bayou, Hatchet has fun with the location incorporating the obscenities of Mardi Gras and the unique scariness of the swamps.

When Director Adam Green signed on (recently deceased) special effects master John Buechler and Kane Hodder (Jason Vorhees) in the initial states of pre-production, he had to know he had something special in the making. When he further secured Robert Englund (Freddy Kruger) and Tony Todd (Candyman) to the movie’s cast, Adam Green must have known he had a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Hatchet is as comical as it is disgusting. It doesn’t take itself too serious but just enough so that the movie does not fall into the camp niche. I got a kick out of how socially aware some of the stereotypes are and how the plot pulls itself together really well.

The main character and antagonist Victor Crowley may never see stardom equaled to Jason Vorhees, Freddy Kruger or even Madman Mars but he does stand on his own two feet. He is frightening and gross and the Hatchet franchise has its own unique magic that elevates it enough to be talked about when discussing the most successful slasher films of all time.

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