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"THE HITCHER"
(2007) (Sean Bean, Sophia Bush) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
*None Extreme Extreme *Heavy Extreme
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild Heavy Extreme Heavy Extreme
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Heavy *None None Moderate Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Suspense/Thriller: A young couple tries to avoid a homicidal hitchhiker who won't let them be as they travel across New Mexico.
PLOT:
Grace Andrews (SOPHIA BUSH) and Jim Halsey (ZACHARY KNIGHTON) are young lovers who are driving through the Southwest on spring break. While not paying attention during a rainy nighttime leg of their trip, they nearly run into a man standing in the middle of the road next to a stopped car. Screeching to a halt, Grace pleads for Jim not to get out as the man spooks her, so they take off, only to later encounter that man -- John Ryder (SEAN BEAN) -- who asks for a ride to the nearest motel. Grace isn't so sure, but Jim agrees, although his decision proves to be the wrong one.

That's because Ryder is a homicidal maniac who subsequently carjacks them. The two manage to fight him off and kick him out of their moving car, only to later encounter him again in a family's station wagon. Trying to warn them of the dangerous man inside their car, Jim and Grace end up crashing, only to then find that Ryder has killed the mother and son and badly wounded the father. Racing to get that man help, Jim and Grace have another encounter with Ryder who seems intent on terrorizing rather than killing them, resulting in the young couple being mistaken by the local police as cold-blooded killers.

That is, except for Lieutenant Esteridge (NEAL McDONOUGH) who doesn't think things add up. As Ryder's killing spree allows Jim and Grace to escape, they flee in hopes of eluding the lunatic, all with the police on their tail and Esteridge trying to figure out the real story.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're into these sorts of sadistic killer flicks, they just might.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For strong bloody violence, terror and language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • SEAN BEAN plays a homicidal maniac who kills various people all while seemingly enjoying his ability to terrorize the young couple.
  • SOPHIA BUSH plays the young woman who finds herself -- along with her boyfriend -- the object of Ryder's obsession. She does what she must to avoid both him and the police, and uses strong profanity.
  • ZACHARY KNIGHTON plays her boyfriend whose decision to give Ryder a ride ends up threatening their lives. He similarly does what he must to survive, and uses lots of strong profanity.
  • NEAL McDONOUGH plays the lone cop who doesn't think the young couple are the killers, and instead tries to figure out who that is. He uses strong profanity.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a quick look at the content found in this R-rated suspense flick. Profanity consists of at least 39 "f" words, while other expletives and colorful phrases are uttered. Sexually related dialogue and brief song lyrics (much of that being explicit) are present, as is the sight of an unmarried couple embracing in a shower (with partial glimpses of the woman's bare breast). That woman also awakens in bed thinking her boyfriend is there with her, but it turns out to be the killer, and earlier is seen in her bra while changing clothes.

    Violence consists of people being killed by various means (mostly shootings, but also pulling one victim's body in half, slitting throats, etc.). Most of that has extremely bloody and gory results, while those scenes and various moments of peril might be unsettling and/or suspenseful to viewers. Meanwhile, the killer obviously has a bad attitude.

    Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, you may want to look more closely at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.

    For those prone to visually induced motion sickness, varying amounts of handheld camerawork are seen in the film.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • None, but after escaping from Ryder, Jim tries to reassure Grace by telling her that they'll be drinking beer with her friends that next night.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • As a jackrabbit crosses the road, a car suddenly runs over it at high speed, leaving a bloody carcass.
  • Jim says he knows the look on Grace's face, adding, "You gotta pee," and she eventually agrees (we don't see any related activity).
  • A large insect goes splat on Jim's windshield, leaving a gooey mess that's worsened when he runs the wipers across it. He then has Grace steer while he leans out the window (with his foot still on the gas) and pours water onto the windshield.
  • We see some dried blood on Ryder's knife blade.
  • Ryder has a little bloody scrape on his forehead.
  • A man's bloody hand (the father below) suddenly slams against a car window, leaving a bloody handprint there.
  • A child in the backseat of a station wagon is bloody, as are his parents in the front, with the mother dead (with a bloody neck) but the father alive with a knife sticking out of him (with a very bloody shirt). As Jim tends to him and gets bloody in the process, we see more blood including some spurting out from the wound and then the man projectile vomiting some blood (with more down his chin) before dying.
  • Jim has a slight cut on his face.
  • We see a bloody finger wipe one side of a two-way mirror, leaving a bloody trail on it.
  • Grace finds one dead and very bloody cop, and then another with a dog from the canine unit licking his very bloody face.
  • We see the dead and bloody cops again (from above).
  • A bullet suddenly strikes a cop in the head (with bloody results).
  • Ryder shows up, pulls alongside one cop car, and shoots both officers inside it dead (with bloody results).
  • Grace has others' blood on her hands and we then see some being washed down a drain.
  • Grace discovers that Ryder has chained Jim by his wrists and feet to two different trucks. Ryder is in one and slightly drives forward, stretching out Jim, and causing him pain (and the chains dig into his wrists with some slightly bloody results).
  • Spoiler Alert: With a man chained by his hands and feet to two different trucks, Ryder drives one forward, thus ripping the man in half (with bloody results).
  • Grace has a large bruise on her arm.
  • While being transported in a police van and cuffed with his hands behind him, Ryder dislocates his thumb and then painfully pulls one hand free from its cuff, but not without very bloody results. He then takes the now open cuff and slices a guard's neck with it, spilling lots of blood, and killing him. He then grabs that cop's gun and shoots another in the front seat (in the head, with bloody results).
  • Lieutenant Esteridge's head is somewhat bloody following a car wreck.
  • Ryder's hand and arm are bloody following a car crash.
  • Ryder shoots a cop in the head with bloody results.
  • We see a silhouette view of a person shooting another person in the head with a shotgun at point blank range, with blood squirting out from the back of his head. We then see an overhead shot of him lying on the road with a bloody head wound and a pool of blood on the road by him.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Ryder has a bad attitude for murdering various people as well as terrorizing Jim and Grace for the pleasure of doing so.
  • After nearly accidentally hitting Ryder in the road at night in the rain, Grace and Jim drive off without seeing if he's okay or offering to help (before they know he's a homicidal maniac, but due to Grace nevertheless being scared of him).
  • As Grace listens to headphones in the backseat of the car, Ryder comments to Jim about her being attractive and then asks, "How long have you been f*cking her?"
  • When asked why he killed so many people, Ryder calmly replies, "Why not?"
  • After Grace shoots Ryder, he asks her, "Feels good, doesn't it?" but she says she doesn't feel anything.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Scenes listed under "Violence," "Blood/Gore" and "Jump Scenes" may be unsettling, suspenseful, or scary to viewers, particularly younger ones and/or those with low tolerance levels for such material.
  • Not paying attention while driving in the rain at night, Grace shrieks as Jim nearly hits Ryder who's standing in the middle of the road next to a car. Jim's vehicle then swerves and spins out of control, coming to a stop in the road. Jim thinks he should check on the man, but Grace is scared and tells him to leave. Jim tries to start the car, but has problems doing so, all as Ryder starts walking toward their vehicle that finally starts, allowing them to speed away just in time.
  • We see Ryder get out of a truck at a gas station where Jim and Grace have stopped (Jim ends up apologizing for leaving him back on the road after nearly hitting him).
  • Ryder suddenly breaks Jim's cell phone, pulls a switchblade, and then grabs his arm, carjacking him and Grace. Ryder then grabs Grace by the head and holds his blade close to her eye, and then holds it to Jim's throat, wanting him to say, "I want to die." Jim then speeds up and then suddenly slams on the breaks, sending Ryder's face into the windshield. He then repeatedly kicks Ryder, getting Grace to reach up and open the door so that he can kick Ryder out onto the road from the moving car, causing him to tumble and be knocked unconscious.
  • Jim and Grace spot Ryder in the back of a station wagon after hitching a ride with an unsuspecting family. Jim then races up, and he and Grace try to warn the family, but a semi nearly hits them, forcing them off the road. They go airborne and slam to a stop with a large tree branch penetrating the windshield between them. Shaken, but otherwise unharmed, they crawl out, make their way back to the road, and then start walking. A while later, they discover the station wagon alongside the road, and Jim looks in to find blood along the child's body in the backseat and then the seemingly dead and bloody parents in the front. However, the father is still alive, albeit barely, and thus Jim tends to him in the backseat as Grace drives for help. Just then, Ryder slams them from behind in a large truck and then repeats that action until suddenly veering away (all as Jim tries to prevent the father from bleeding to death -- but the man later dies).
  • While in a restaurant's bathroom, Grace sees Ryder's truck through the outside window and panics, especially when she sees a shadow approaching the door and hears footsteps. She then hurriedly locks the door as we see the effects of someone trying it from the outside. After waiting a moment, she slowly opens the door and peaks outside, only to have a cop suddenly grab and then point a gun at her.
  • After being left alone for a while during police interrogation, Grace sees the doorknob move and then finds the door unlocked. As she cautiously goes out into the hallway, she finds one dead and very bloody cop, and then another with a dog from the canine unit licking his very bloody face (the results of Ryder killing them - not seen).
  • Ryder violently grabs Jim's head through jail cell bars, holds him by his head, and threatens to kill both him and Grace if he makes any noise.
  • Holding a gun she removed from a dead cop's hand, Grace slowly makes her way through a now dimly lit police station while looking for Jim.
  • Grace and Jim manage to escape from a remote police station just as other cops arrive with their handguns and shotguns drawn.
  • Jim and Grace see Ryder coming toward them with a rifle, so they try to escape in a junkyard, only to encounter some barking guard dogs on the other side of a fence. Thus, they hide in a trailer, with Grace peering out the window (next to a large spider in a web), while Jim reacts to a scorpion crawling on the ground near him. When a cop arrives and starts looking around, Jim goes out to talk to him, but the cop suddenly jumps on him. Grace then comes out and holds her gun on the cop, wanting him to get into his car that they're stealing. Suddenly a rifle shot from Ryder hits that cop in the head, killing him. Jim and Grace then speed away as another cop opens fire on them.
  • Several police cars and a chopper chase after Jim and Grace down the highway, with a cop opening fire on their stolen police car to make them stop (shooting out a tire, etc.) Just then, Ryder shows up, pulls alongside one cop car, and shoots both officers inside it dead (with bloody results). That causes a violent car crash, followed by Ryder shooting at the pursuing helicopter, causing it to peel away.
  • Grace wakes up, thinking Jim is in bed with her, caressing her under the covers. She comments on being aroused and is then shocked when Ryder is there instead and lasciviously states, "I'm f*cking horny too." He then grabs and pins her to the bed, but she bites his hand, prompting him to punch her. She then knocks him off and tries to escape, but he trips her. She then takes a shade-less lap and jabs the bulb end into Ryder, shocking him. She then races into the bathroom and struggles against him to close the door, finally succeeding. After a few moments, she slowly goes out with her gun drawn, but finds the room empty.
  • Grace discovers that Ryder has chained Jim by his wrists and feet to two different trucks. Ryder is in one and slightly drives forward, stretching out Jim, and causing him pain (and the chains dig into his wrists with some slightly bloody results). Grace aims her gun at Ryder and demands that he stop, but he says if she shoots him, the clutch would be let out, and the truck would roll forward, thus killing Jim. He then has her get into the semi with him and then pulls her gun to his forehead, wanting her to shoot him. Many cops then arrive and aim their guns at them.
  • Spoiler Alert: With a man chained by his hands and feet to two different trucks, Ryder drives one forward, thus ripping the man in half (with bloody results).
  • While being transported in a police van and cuffed with his hands behind him, Ryder dislocates his thumb and then painfully pulls one hand free from its cuff, but not without very bloody results. He then takes the now open cuff and slices a guard's neck with it, spilling lots of blood, and killing him. He then grabs that cop's gun and shoots another in the front seat (in the head, with bloody results), causing the van to crash, another vehicle to crash into that, and Lieutenant Esteridge to crash his SUV into the wreckage (leaving him unable to get out of the truck due to his leg being pinned inside).
  • As Grace approaches a crashed police van and peers inside, Ryder suddenly grabs her by the arm and then hair, pulling and then locking her inside it. He then shoots the leaked gasoline on the road, causing a spark that sets it and the van on fire (Grace gets out alive despite the van exploding).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Handguns/Shotguns/Rifles/Knives: Carried and/or used to threaten, wound, or kill others. See "Violence" for details.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "What the f*ck was that/are you doing/happened back there?" "A bad-ass f*cking ride," "You f*cking hit her, you're f*cking dead," "F*cker," "F*ck you," "Sick f*ck lunatic," "Oh f*ck," "I'm f*cking horny too," "Your whiny f*cking boyfriend," "Pull the f*cking trigger," "You're a sick f*ck," "Go f*ck yourself," "Regular little p*ssy wagon, huh?" "I don't give a rat's c*ck-bag," "Freak," "That's a no-can-do," "One hell of a story to tell," "Stupid redneck," "You scream like a little bitch," "He killed the help," "That stupid hick clerk" and "Who the hell did that?"
  • It's possible the film could inspire some troubled kids to try to terrorize others in ways similar to those seen in the film.
  • A large insect goes splat on Jim's windshield, leaving a gooey mess that's worsened when he runs the wipers across it. He then has Grace steer while he leans out the window (with his foot still on the gas) and pours water onto the windshield.
  • Jim has a tattoo on his arm, as does a miscellaneous store clerk.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • As a jackrabbit crosses the road, a car suddenly runs over it at high speed, leaving a bloody carcass.
  • A figure suddenly breaks through a car window to grab Jim, but he then wakes up from this nightmare.
  • A man's bloody hand suddenly slams against a car window, leaving a bloody handprint there.
  • A cop suddenly grabs and then points a gun at Grace.
  • A large truck suddenly crash-lands near Grace (from somewhere above her), startling her.
  • A cop suddenly jumps on Jim.
  • A bullet suddenly strikes a cop in the head (with bloody results).
  • As Grace approaches a crashed police van and peers inside, Ryder suddenly grabs her by the arm.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • An extreme amount of suspenseful and ominous music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • A song (that doesn't occur in a sexual scene) includes the lyrics, "I want to f*ck you like an animal. I want to feel you from the inside. I want to f*ck you like an animal."
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 39 "f" words (4 used sexually, while some may include the prefix "mother"), 6 "s" words, 1 slang term each using male and female genitals ("c*ck" and "p*ssy"), 3 hells, 3 S.O.B.s, 2 asses (1 used with "hole"), 1 damn, 4 uses of "Oh my God," 3 of "G-damn" and 1 use each of "God" and "Oh God."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • As Grace greets Jim, she puts her leg up along his side while hugging him. With him then later driving, she changes clothes in the car (we see her bare midriff as she arches her body to put on her short skirt, and then her in her bra as she changes tops (to one that's open far enough down to show some cleavage).
  • A store clerk hands Grace a bathroom key holder that's a shirtless Barbie doll.
  • For most of the film, we see Grace in her short denim skirt.
  • About Jim's car, a store clerk says it's a "regular little p*ssy wagon, huh?"
  • As Grace listens to headphones in the backseat of the car, Ryder comments to Jim about her being attractive and then asks, "How long have you been f*cking her?" Jim replies, "Excuse me?" prompting Ryder to state, "It's a simple question." Seeing a wedding band on Ryder's finger, Jim then asks Ryder how long he's been "f*cking your wife," but Ryder says he isn't married.
  • Grace shows a little cleavage.
  • After a harrowing encounter, Jim and Grace console each other in the shower. We see a torso and up view of them embracing (we see their bare backs) and they briefly kiss. We then see Jim shirtless as he gets out to go call for help, leaving us with a side, torso and up view of Grace standing there, with her arming blocking a full view of her bare breast (we do, however, see partial glimpses of that body part).
  • Grace wakes up, thinking Jim is in bed with her, caressing her under the covers. She comments on being aroused and is then shocked when Ryder is there instead and lasciviously states, "I'm f*cking horny too." She then tries to get away and we see various views of her in her very small panties (and a top).
  • A song (that doesn't occur in a sexual scene) includes the lyrics, "I want to f*ck you like an animal. I want to feel you from the inside. I want to f*ck you like an animal."
  • SMOKING
  • None, but we see a written ad (words only) for cigarettes at a convenience store/gas station.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • None.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Why it's generally not wise to pick up hitchhikers.
  • The written comment that 42,000 Americans die on the road every year.
  • The comment that nobody stops for strangers.
  • Serial killers.
  • Being wrongly arrested and what one should do in a circumstance like that.
  • When asked why he killed so many people, Ryder calmly replies, "Why not?"
  • After Grace shoots Ryder, he asks her, "Feels good, doesn't it?" but she says she doesn't feel anything.
  • VIOLENCE
  • As a jackrabbit crosses the road, a car suddenly runs over it at high speed, leaving a bloody carcass.
  • Ryder suddenly breaks Jim's cell phone, pulls a switchblade, and then grabs his arm, carjacking him and Grace. Ryder then grabs Grace by the head and holds his blade close to her eye, and then holds it to Jim's throat, wanting him to say, "I want to die." Jim then speeds up and then suddenly slams on the breaks, sending Ryder's face into the windshield. He then repeatedly kicks Ryder, getting Grace to reach up and open the door so that he can kick Ryder out onto the road from the moving car, causing him to tumble and be knocked unconscious.
  • Jim and Grace spot Ryder in the back of a station wagon after hitching a ride with an unsuspecting family. Jim then races up, and he and Grace try to warn the family, but a semi nearly hits them, forcing them off the road. They go airborne and slam to a stop with a large tree branch penetrating the windshield between them. Shaken, but otherwise unharmed, they crawl out, make their way back to the road, and then start walking. A while later, they discover the station wagon alongside the road, and Jim looks in to find blood along the child's body in the backseat and then the seemingly dead and bloody parents in the front. However, the father is still alive, albeit barely, and thus Jim tends to him in the backseat as Grace drives for help. Just then, Ryder slams them from behind in a large truck and then repeats that action until suddenly veering away (all as Jim tries to prevent the father from bleeding to death -- but the man later dies).
  • A cop suddenly grabs and then points a gun at Grace.
  • A cop pins Jim to the ground while arresting him (and holds a gun on him).
  • After being left alone for a while during police interrogation, Grace sees the doorknob move and then finds the door unlocked. As she cautiously goes out into the hallway, she finds one dead and very bloody cop, and then another with a dog from the canine unit licking his very bloody face (the results of Ryder killing them - not seen).
  • Ryder violently grabs Jim's head through jail cell bars, holds him by his head, and threatens to kill both him and Grace if he makes any noise.
  • A cop suddenly jumps on Jim. Grace then comes out and holds her gun on the cop, wanting him to get into his car that they're stealing. Suddenly a rifle shot from Ryder hits that cop in the head, killing him. Jim and Grace then speed away as another cop opens fire on them.
  • Several police cars and a chopper chase after Jim and Grace down the highway, with a cop opening fire on their stolen police car to make them stop (shooting out a tire, etc.) Just then, Ryder shows up, pulls alongside one cop car, and shoots both officers inside it dead (with bloody results). That causes a violent car crash, followed by Ryder shooting at the pursuing helicopter, causing it to peel away.
  • Grace wakes up, thinking Jim is in bed with her, caressing her under the covers. She comments on being aroused and is then shocked when Ryder is there instead and lasciviously states, "I'm f*cking horny too." He then grabs and pins her to the bed, but she bites his hand, prompting him to punch her. She then knocks him off and tries to escape, but he trips her. She then takes a shade-less lap and jabs the bulb end into Ryder, shocking him. She then races into the bathroom and struggles against him to close the door, finally succeeding.
  • Grace discovers that Ryder has chained Jim by his wrists and feet to two different trucks. Ryder is in one and slightly drives forward, stretching out Jim, and causing him pain (and the chains dig into his wrists with some slightly bloody results).
  • Spoiler Alert: With a man chained by his hands and feet to two different trucks, Ryder drives one forward, thus ripping the man in half (with bloody results).
  • While being transported in a police van and cuffed with his hands behind him, Ryder dislocates his thumb and then painfully pulls one hand free from its cuff, but not without very bloody results. He then takes the now open cuff and slices a guard's neck with it, spilling lots of blood, and killing him. He then grabs that cop's gun and shoots another in the front seat (in the head, with bloody results), causing the van to crash, another vehicle to crash into that, and Lieutenant Esteridge to crash his SUV into the wreckage (leaving him unable to get out of the truck due to his leg being pinned inside).
  • As Grace approaches a crashed police van and peers inside, Ryder suddenly grabs her by the arm and then hair, pulling and then locking her inside it. He then shoots the leaked gasoline, causing a spark that sets it and the van on fire (Grace gets out alive despite the van exploding).
  • Ryder shoots a cop in the head with bloody results.
  • Spoiler Alert: Grace repeatedly shoots Ryder with a shotgun, knocking him to the ground (he's wearing a bulletproof vest). We then see a silhouette view of her shooting him in the head at point blank range, with blood squirting out from the back of his head. We then see an overhead shot of him lying on the road with a bloody head wound and a pool of blood on the road by him.



  • Reviewed January 18, 2007 / Posted January 19, 2007

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