Hungerford is a British sci-fi film released in 2014, directed by Drew Casson. A student is filming his everyday life for seven days for a project when freakish events take over their little town.
Hello, there! I’m dos Santos, and this is Ulven Reviews, with Movies and series from all over the world and all eras. Today let’s talk about Hungerford.
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Cowen (played by Drew Casson) is a technology student who lives with the siblings Philippa (played by Georgia Bradley) and Adam (played by Tom Scarlett). Kipper (played by Sam Carter) apparently doesn’t live in the flat with them but is always there as well.
As homework for one of his classes, Cowen is filming seven days of his everyday life. What he didn’t expect is that some very grotesque things would happen during his modest project.
Okay, it’s pretty obvious that most people think this movie is bad. With an average rating of 3.8 on IMDb and a 21% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, it’s easy to bash on the film.
I can’t say I like the movie, but I don’t regret watching it, and it’s definitely not around the worst I’ve ever seen. By the way, I’ve created a playlist with my least favorite movies reviewed here. You can check it on the info cards on the corner.
Hungerford is of the found-footage sub-genre besides not claiming to be footage that was found, it just emulates an amateur home video. It’s also a zombie and alien invasion movie. To be more specific, aliens invade the city (Hungerford), enter the people’s bodies, turning them into violent zombies.
With all of these sub-genres, the movie’s plot had everything to be a convoluted mess when, in fact, it’s straight-forward and simple. The problem with the story is the absolute lack of originality.
The first act is dumb and very resemblant to the typical “look at me, I get drunk, smoke weed and wanna get laid” teen comedy. But after a party they attend, things start to go down much faster. That’s when the movie becomes Shaun of the Dead, even verbally acknowledged by one of the characters.
I’m not complaining about it, by the way, Shaun of the Dead is one of my favorite movies, and every homage is welcome. After this segment, we head to the conclusion. Well, at least of this first film, because there’s a sequel. The whole third act is a little visually confusing because it’s too dark and shaky, but story-wise, it’s okay.
However, the film has many idiotic decisions that don’t make any sense and very relevant events that were emotionally flat, non-impactful in the slightest. I’ll describe an example of it, but it will contain spoilers.
There will be time-stamps on the description box below. You can navigate the video through them to skip the spoilers ahead.
Besides everything, Hungerford got me mildly entertained and interested enough to enjoy it to the end. At least I wasn’t cheering for the characters to die, what can happen when characters annoy me enough.
The characters were not likable at all, so there was no one to highlight. They were bland, and I didn’t want them to die just by default.
The acting is not as people make out to be in the reviews on IMDb and such. I think the acting was okay within the context.
We have to take some things into consideration when judging these performances. Most of them are not even professional actors, the dialogue is often really awful, and I bet they were more concerned with having fun doing a movie instead of worrying about their chances at the Academy Awards.
The most awkward thing about the acting is how they usually do not even acknowledge the omnipresent camera and just look past it towards the cameraman. It’s not like that in reality. When there’s a camera in your face, you usually end up looking at it, even if it’s by accident.
Talking about the camera, it’s precarious on purpose. It’s shaky, as I said when talking about the ending it’s often too dark and the framing is poor. Most of it, I attribute to the found-footage genre, not to the quality of the director.
There are some moments with decent cinematography, like the one I used in the thumbnail, but it’s rare, and it doesn’t last long. There are some good-looking shots during the dawn, as well.
The visual effects are mediocre. They’re passable enough especially considering that everything was made by the guy who accumulated the positions of director, writer, editor, and lead actor, in addition to making the digital effects.
Despite all the legitimate criticism, we have to give all the credit to the determination of these young people in making an entire movie, reaching continents much further than Hungerford and Bristol, where the film was made. Congratulations to everyone involved.
Hungerford is kinda bad but got me entertained enough. It’s very simplistic and not very original. However, you got to, at least, give props to these young people making a full-length movie with such a low budget. I’ll give Hungerford 4 Moons.
That’s it for now.
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