It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
Hunting is not a very efficient means of obtaining food or controlling the wildlife population, but it is a handy way to destroy animals for fun.
In several of his stories about hunting, Ernest Hemingway demonstrated that those who took pleasure in murdering animals were probably capable of murdering human beings if a lucky opportunity came along.
That is the argument of "The Hunt," a relentless film from Spain by Carlos Saura. The thin line between ceremonial violence (as in bullfights) and deliberate personal violence has been a favorite subject of Spain's most distinguished director, Luis Buñuel. Saura, his young disciple, also finds it fascinating to study characters at the moment when they become capable of murder.
Directed at a slow pace, which exactly expresses the ritual and tedium of a hunting party, the film introduces three middle-aged men who fought for the Fascists during the Spanish Civil War. Now they have gotten together again to hunt rabbits in the same rocky countryside where they once trapped Loyalists.