It’s a common story, one that we’ve heard a number of times. An unknown and aimless drifter comes wandering into to town to learn that the the town is a depreciated war zone of drugs, violence, sexual crimes, and corruption. But unlike those other protagonists of other films, this one’s a hobo wanting nothing more than to purchase a lawnmower so that he can make money cutting people’s lawns. However, a man can’t always get what he wants and this hobo is pissed off that he’s going to have to cut his dream short. He won’t stand for the degenerate and perverse behavior of the scum that mercilessly bullies the people of Scum City. He’s had enough, and he’s going to enact his own brand of justice, with a shotgun, one shell at a time.
“Hobo With a Shotgun” is a throw-back to those sleazy double features you’d see in a grindhouse movie theater. I think that the filmmakers were hoping that you’d stare up at the screen, awe-struck by the sexual perversity and grotesque violence of the film as you munch on stringy licorice, buttered popcorn, and cherry soda pop. It’s all good fun, and totally absurd. The only un-absurd thing of the film is Rutger Hauer’s performance as the mad Hobo with a shotgun, whose grizzled and gnarled performance remains dead-on target with a well played intensity and sincerity.
It’s also reminiscent of those independent films from the 80’s and 90’s (my personal favorite period of filmmaking) that were made with a minor budget, forcing the filmmakers to be creative with their resources. So give it a watch, try not to look away, and be sure to laugh at the mayhem.