THE HILLS HAVE EYESUnited States-107 Mins. 2006

Ted Levine as Big Bob Carter

 Directed by Alexandre AjaWritten by Alexandre Aja and Gregory Levasseur     I know that the original 1977 film The Hills Have Eyes is supposed to be one of Wes Cravens best films. To be honest, I was bored with it after thirty minutes. Coming from a horror fan like myself, that’s a bold statement. I remember all my friends in school telling me that I just had to see the movie. So I did, and I didn’t like it.    Of course, knowing me the way you do you will clearly understand that I told you all that so that I can tell you all the rest. The remake of The Hills Have Eyes is one kickass motherfucker of a horror film. The story is the same; vacationing family breaks down in the middle of the desert right near where they’ve been doing nuclear testing and are beset upon by a band of inbred mutated hill people that have been watching their every move. Pretty soon there’s blood, guts, knives, bullets, fire and everything in between as the hapless vacationers battle the horrendous hill people. There’s enough ugly in-breds and buckets of blood to make a splatter fan have a gore-gasm in their tighty-whiteys. Director Alexandre Aja directs his first American film after coming off the success of the gory as hell High Tension as if he would never get another chance behind the camera. The Hills Have Eyes is one of the best remakes of a horror film that I’ve seen in a long time. It delivers the nasties with the force of a freight train. Oh yeah, watch out for Robert Joy as one of the Hill people. He’s the guy that plays Sid, the medical examiner on CSI: New York. He has a scene where he bites the head off a parakeet and drains the blood into his mouth. That’s sick and awesome all at the same time.


The photos of mutations that play during the opening credits are not of atomic mutation, but birth defects caused by the use of Agent Orange in Vietnam.

Almost all of Ted Levine’s actions and lines were improvised.
With the Aaron Stanford character, the filmmakers were looking for someone similar to Dustin Hoffman did in Straw Dogs, where Hoffman was an ineffectual nerd who rises to heroism in the end and commits ghastly acts of violence. Stanford in the films also markedly physically resembles this films director, Alexandre Aja.
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