Directed by Dave Fugett | Reviewed by Samiksha Periwal
The true value of human relationships can be understood only when one is on the verge of losing someone important in their life. It often takes a life changing event to get to this realization which may or may not always be a pleasant one. Derek and Brooke Simmons, husband and wife as shown in this film are in a similar situation where they are trying to set things right for their only child Jenny. However, at the moment, a divorce agreement seems the most likely option for their purpose. The couple’s apparently last adventurous hike turns out to be their most dreadful nightmare as they encounter a psycho serial killer in the woods. Whether this life-threatening situation would bring them back together or take away their lives forever, altogether putting an end to their messy equation is for you to figure by watching this extraordinarily intense and spine-chilling film.
The story begins with Brooke taking a tragic decision of ending her marriage with Derek, whom she really loves and cares for. However, she is not ready to deal with his alcoholism and lack of seriousness in life and hence decides to do this for her only priority in life at the moment, her daughter, Jenny. On the other hand, Derek is determined to convince his lady to get back together as he promises to change his behavior, but with a reluctant attitude. While they decide to go for a hike and have a small picnic on their favorite spot, a psychopath killer follows them and shoots Derek, injuring both his feet. This man turns out to be a sadist, pervert and ruthless human being who is lonely, looking for his next prey which unfortunately turns out to be Brooke. From here the plot starts getting intense, riveting and extremely adventurous and the couple does anything and everything possible to make things work and escape from the trap of this manic personality.
This film brings out the mental anxieties and tension working on the inside of the minds of such killers through Delroy Grady’s character, at a point even justifying such his actions because of a possible past trauma. It most importantly tries to give out a message that every individual acts a certain way because of a reason and no human is innately devilish. Another take away of this film is the motto of not giving up on situations or people. The narrative lays emphasis on love and understanding while dealing with the other problematic issues in a relationship through Brooke and Derek’s present situation. An ongoing and cliché statement as it might sound, “the moment of realization is what matters the most’’ clearly justifies the climax of this film.
‘The Hike’ is a full-length narrative feature film, shot entirely on location with a really talented cast that has correctly justified every character present in the story. The cinematography and background score also go very well with the plot. While it may seem a little slow paced in the beginning the curiosity of what happens next follows up very soon as the story progresses. Especially, after Brooke and Derek are trapped by psychopath Grady. Dave Fugett has definitely worked exceptionally well both as an actor and director in tis film truly justifying the character. Moreover, Monica Olive and Jon Beland who play Brooke and Derek Simmons respectively have also pulled off their parts pretty well. The slight element of suspense keeps the viewers hooked on to this film right till the end.
All in all, this film is a hair-raising, fierce and interesting watch. It takes you through an emotional roller-coaster ride as you see the intense anxieties and confusions working on the minds of the characters which makes you realize the worth of your life. It can definitely be emotionally taking for people who are sensitive to violence, abuse and so on. However, it is definitely a brilliant piece of work that should be appreciated and loved by movie critiques.
Samiksha Periwal is an 20 year old student from Kolkata, West Bengal. She is an enthusiast, eager to learn and explore. She has done her schooling from Lakshmipat Singhania Academy, Kolkata and is currently a student of Christ University, Bangalore pursuing a triple major in BA Psychology, Sociology and English. She is a passionate writer and has won many laurels for her school through the years.