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  • Warning: Spoilers
    Unlike many horror fanatics, I have nothing against the trend toward remakes of classic genre films—there are cover songs, so why not cover movies? But the 2007 embalming of Robert Harmon's 1986 masterpiece The Hitcher is the kind of mechanical exercise that gives not only remakes but horror in general a bad name. Witless and pointless, it's compelling only as a lesson in the importance of style when it comes to scaring an audience. Though the plot is close enough to the 1986 version to earn a screen credit for that film's scriptwriter, Eric Red, the execution is so botched that what was terrifying in Harmon's film becomes coma-inducing in the remake. Like the 1986 version, the new Hitcher tells the story of a young couple relentlessly pursued by an unstoppable, completely psychotic killer who frames his prey for murders he commits. The key difference is that in the original movie the love interest, played by Jennifer Jason Leigh, didn't come into the story until late; a significant chunk of the storyline was devoted to a cat-and-mouse game between two characters, Rutger Hauer's chilling hitcher, and hapless victim C. Thomas Howell. In the new movie, the heroes are an item right from the start: college lovers Sophia Bush and Zachary Knighton hit the road, and after some random babbling that's evidently supposed to pass for character development, they find themselves the targets of the psycho hitcher, played by Sean Bean. What follows is essentially a feature-length chase, as the kids have to evade the murderer as well as the authorities after the hitcher, in a hilariously implausible chain of events, makes it look as though they are responsible for his bloody crimes. The Hitcher is directed by Dave Meyers, a veteran of music videos, who is to plot and character what airline workers are to luggage. He excels in individual moments, like an energetic opening-credits sequence and some well-timed bursts of violence, but when it comes to connecting these moments into any kind of involving drama, Meyers and his collaborators don't seem to have the faintest idea what they're doing. Even though the film is practically all action, it has no momentum or intensity—the set pieces don't build, they just pile up on top of each other. There's no terror because there's no emotional connection to the characters; the noir-ish doppelganger relationship between Hauer and Howell in the original has been completely stripped from the narrative, and the lack of psychological subtext makes Bean silly rather than threatening. Though the movie is superficially faster paced than the original, it seems longer because there are no strong characterizations to anchor the action. It doesn't help that Meyers has one lone weapon in his arsenal of scare tactics—in the place of suspense, he provides scene after scene in which the volume goes down really, really low before someone jumps out with a loud "BOOM!": This isn't film-making, it's shock treatment. The director also has no apparent understanding of what made the original film scary. Whereas Harmon mounted Eric Red's audacious screenplay as a sort of hallucinatory nightmare, Meyers shoots the same action as though he's directing a beer commercial. There's no sense of poetry in his images, and the result is that a villain who came across as a supernatural force of evil personified in the 1986 film just seems silly here—the plot is absurd, so to play it on a level of literal reality as Meyers does is a choice that defies common sense. The decision to turn the movie into a sort of teen romance is equally mystifying given how few dividends the love story yields. Bush and Knighton are appealing screen presences, but they have nothing to do here—their relationship has no definition or depth, and when the movie hinges on one of the lovers avenging the other, the violence seems uninspired and gimmicky because it isn't an extension of any internal tension. I realize, especially for its target audience, that complaining about the lack of substance in The Hitcher is a little like complaining about the lack of musical numbers in The Hills Have Eyes. But The Hitcher doesn't offer even the most basic payoffs of its formula. The action sequences are so slick and impersonal that when a key character is torn to pieces it has all the emotional impact of a grapefruit being squashed on screen, and so little actually happens in the movie that when the end credits start to roll it's a little shocking. As I watched the final fadeout, I was still waiting for the movie to begin.
  • The plot is simple, a couple traveling on a dark and stormy night pick up a man who was hitch hiking and soon find they should have passed him by.

    The story has been often used but the immediate source for this telling is a film that starred Rutger Hauer as the title character. Hauer's John Rider managed to walk the fine line between insanity and reason as he upped the ante in everything he did in some twisted game that only he understood. In this remake Sean Bean is the psycho on the loose and its a wonderfully acted portrayal of a man on the edge of sanity. Unfortunately he's not very scary. Bean is somehow much to urbane to be frightening even as he's doing terrible things to people. He's simply to charming.

    Whats worse are the people who pick him up. I hated them from the start and wanted some one-anyone-to kill them simply so I didn't have to spend anytime with them. Stupid and vacant they seemed less like people than the victims Bean kills. C Thomas Howell in the original may have been a bit of a twit, but I really felt sorry for him as Hauer turned his life into a living hell, here I felt they had it coming.

    Different enough from the original to make comparisons pointless this film isn't very good on any level and really has no reason to be seen except for Sean Bean good, but nonthreatening villain
  • jed-estes30 January 2007
    Warning: Spoilers
    I love the original Hitcher and was very excited when I found out they were doing a sequel. I thought heck yeah C Thomas will kick butt again but no I got the lousy Hitcher II: I've been waiting. I thought that after that turd The Hitcher would finally be able to rest in peace but alas I was wrong The Hitcher remake was waiting. I'll be the first to agree that it is not a travesty to film like The Hitcher II but it still sucks none the less. I just felt it droll on and on as I sat there thinking if only C Thomas could come out and kill every one on the screen and every one in the audience who had never heard of the original and thought what they were watching was new and innovative, we would have a good movie on our hands. But old C. Thomas regretfully did not show up for the party. I was left alone. Rent or buy the classic and let this Hitcher keep on Hitching.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    THE HITCHER (2007) ** Sean Bean, Sophia Bush, Zachary Knighton, Neal McDonough. Lackluster and unnecessary remake of the cult '80s Rutger Hauer slasher vehicle this time with a bland one-note Bean in the titular psychotic role whose cross-country odyssey of terror targets young lovers Bush (arguably the stupidest genre heroine in some time setting the bar considerably lower than her previous thespians) and Knighton, as the bad penny from Hell with a high body count and a low threshold for audience suffering in misery. The only thing worth mentioning are the bloody inventive ways Bean's sociopath manages to slip himself out of with unlikelihood at an all time high (or would that be low?) (Dir: Dave Meyers)
  • Warning: Spoilers
    The original was highly enjoyable and Rutger Hauer had never been creepier.Jennifer Jason Leigh was memorable too,as she always is,even if she had limited screen time.In the remake they have sped everything up and added lots of more gore.The gore bit pleases all the bloodthirsty kids who usually shoot people's heads off in lame shoot-em-up video-games.More irritating still this one is shot like some long music video with totally out of place music.Sean Bean better watch out.Silent Hill was bad enough and he appeared in the ultra-silly Equilibrium as well.Now this.Fortunately the critics have given terrible reviews and this abysmal remake really deserves it.If you've seen the original don't EVER watch this remake.Learn this.Remakes are in 9 out of 10 cases a lot worse than the originals.Only remakes that are superior that come to mind is "the Fly" and "the Thing".
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Lots of like-minded responses here. This film was asinine.

    The plot holes weren't just unbelievably silly. They were incredibly annoying. I registered just to come here and whinge about this pathetic film.

    By the end of the film, you're GLAD those two stupid college kids are being tortured by the hitcher.

    Why would you make yourself known in a dark basement/jail if you couldn't see the psychotic killer by yelling out nonstop - revealing your location - AND telling them you have a gun? Why would you be so stupid and selfish as to hide out in the toilet - where there are three sane people right outside who look strong enough physically to help you - when the whole point of you running into the diner is to call 911 (not just to order someone who obviously thinks you're crazy to call 911) and get an ambulance for the guy dying outside? Instead, you waste all your time getting PAPER TOWELS - which, yeah, are really going to help?!!! And if your boyfriend was in mortal danger of literally being pulled in half and you have a gun in your hand, why don't you just try and shoot him free or shoot at the wheels/engine of the truck? And to leave the experienced cop stuck to the car after an accident, without a gun, well exposed to the crazy dude when you're pretty crappy at using guns yourself to try and kill the bad guy is just unbelievably annoying. Other situations where the dumbest college kids on earth just endanger other people, especially members of the police by not communicating properly with them, and turn the audience against them.

    Many other similar plot holes that will drive you crazy. The female lead was written so badly. She was tragically annoying.

    Sean Bean can do so much better.
  • Look I am sorry but this movie was not a patch on the first. OK it was nice to have a little role reversal... but make a different film. The first Hitcher drew its intensity from the aloneness of travelling those massive highways in an attempt to get to your destination without stopping. And to the acting of C Thomas and Rutger although I did think that Sean did a good job I definitely thought that the first had more skin crawling moments. In the first I liked the relationship between the waitress and C Thomas, which couldn't be replayed between the charming and loving couple, which had its own watchable relationship but not the point. The isolation gave it far more drama. So three thumbs down to Hollywood remakes. This was not as bad or as bland as some but still up there on the annoying metre. Sorry guys seek more original roles next time 'cos your acting was good, just chose the wrong way to launch your career. And to Mr Bean great work well done! But don't fall victim to this again.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I saw this when it first came out to the theater and didn't know what to expect because I loved the original.I saw it again on DVD.I hated how this new one added the annoying girlfriend played by Sophia Bush,and Sean Bean wasn't as convincing as the bad guy.I think he's a good actor,but cannot portray someone as menacing,psychotic & creepy the way Rutger could in the original.However then I realized I was glad it was different because copying the original would be difficult and disrespectful. The characters in this remake had no depth or emotion and came across flat and boring and I didn't like the storyline.In the original, C.Thomas Howell,Rutger Hauer, and Jennifer Jason Leigh were interesting,complex,and brought the perfect mood and depth to it and made the characters believable and realistic.In the remake the Jim Halsey character was very badly written and wasn't even a main character anymore.It was all about Jim's girlfriend,and she showed hardly any reaction at all at the end after her boyfriend was ripped apart.Sophia was obviously hired for her looks not talent.One of the reasons this new one wasn't as good is because it just isn't scary with 3 people in the car like it was in the original with just the 2 guys. There wasn't even any thunder or lightning in all that rain which would have added to the movie especially since there was apparently real flashes of it while they were making the movie from what I heard unless this was false.Even so it would have added to the movie.This is one thing I enjoyed about the original Hitcher because it made it more dramatic with John Ryder out in it. This remake just didn't have any atmosphere period, and it was rushed.The store clerk at the gas station got on my nerves with his unintelligent lame remarks.This dialog did nothing for this movie except show how tasteless the writer was for adding such crap. I resented the remark the producer(or directer) Dave Meyers made about the original film in the documentary.He says he decided to remake the hitcher by using only the parts he liked about it and eliminating the parts he didn't like,which in this case is most of the movie.I guess this is why he changed the whole script.As far as i'm concerned he ruined it.He had no respect for the original story and script and he should never have been aloud to remake a masterpiece.I did like the special effects.They were good and a lot of effort was put into them.And I enjoyed one of the bonus features called: the chronicles of a killer.It was unique and very real looking. I hope one day soon the original hitcher will be re-released on DVD with a better transfer.Unfortunately the picture quality isn't very good which is sad for such a terrific film.I was almost sure it was gonna be re-issued since the remake is out now.I am sure it won't be long since there already is a 2 disc special edition of the original Hitcher available in the U.K.
  • Amin Jacoub16 September 2011
    Yup. I agree with most of the reviewers here, those that admire the original version of now definitive cult classic.

    Actually last night it was my second effort to watch this remake, and I failed. First time it was two years ago. I stopped after 15 minutes. Last night I could not hold on more than 45 minutes. It was that awful.

    I don't know, to some, this is great remake, or great movie, even very good movie but original is better. My opinion goes with those who share the same: absolutely terrible.

    The reason for me to watch it, was my curiosity to see maybe something new, like sequel or something, and I was hopping to DIFFERENT plot, not repeating one, and deviating it in some stupid version.

    The cinematography, camera and music as well as acting in original were superb, really, but here, what we have is not only attempt to repeat the plot and its rhythm, yet destroying the true sense that was delivered by original.

    Some of the scenes that remains classic, like police chasing and slow motion of rumbling law enforcement cars. That was amazing in original but here, I almost needed to puke.

    I also realize that director tried to copy the same cinematography style as it was in original, which ends in, of course total failure.

    And something about characters. Sean Bean is one my favorite actors, but here he was terrible. If there are no original movie, his acting might pass, but mimicking Rutgher Hauer was terrible.

    I can't forget the scene in the car with those family and kids (beggining), when he shows his face behind that big toy. It was obvious that this was absolute lack of the face expression of original character. Sean Bean completely lacks in Ryder character. (Hopefully it is only this or maybe two more movie where Bean lacks his in fact great acting gift)

    Those two victims, terrible. C. T. Howell and J. J. Lee can't be replaced, period. OK those two are probably not the bad actors but in this, terrible, terrible.

    All of the other casts is also too far from casts in original (policemen, Captain...).

    So, if you want the real stuff, go watch the original and you will see why most reviewers here have the same bad opinion about this remake.

    As somethimes after some bad remakes (AVP garbage), rises good sequel or prequel or new plot based on concept (like it was for me Predators for example), who knows, maybe someone will make intelligent sequel or prequel, I don't know, whatever, but this one is total failure.
  • There is 1 good thing in this film Sophie Bush. Having watched the original Hitcher with the legendary Rutger Hauer i always remember thinking how creepy the guy was. He was a natural and also pretty much unknown at the time. This remake however had nothing like the effect of the original. Yes maybe because I know whats going to happen even though there are some subtle differences but Sean Bean. I don't think an actor that well known fits this part. The other annoying thing is that no matter what happens to the kids in the film, Attacked, accused of murder blah blah they still continue to their ultimate destination. Any normal person would ring the police or turn around and go back... DOH !!!!

    Don't bother in my opinion
  • Warning: Spoilers
    The 1986 version of the Hitcher is still among my favorite road movies and in this case yet another misguided attempt at a remake. Both movies feature John Rider fishing for a ride and torturing the feature characters through and intricate series of frame-ups. The major elements from the '86 original are all still in tact here from (SPOILER---STOP HERE IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THE ORIGINAL FILM—SPOILER) picking up the Hitcher, kicking him out the door, killing an innocent family, killing cops, and tearing a featured character in half with a semi-truck. Really the only change is in the Jim Halsey character (Zachary Knighton for 2007 and C. Thomas Howell for the '86 version) with Jim driving out with his girlfriend for spring break rather than driving someone else's car from Chicago to San Diego. This may seem like a minor change but in fact changes the film quite a bit and not for the better.

    With many remakes it becomes quite clear the filmmakers don't really understand the depth of the original material and would rather just regurgitate plot for the sake of a quick buck. In both films Jim is a highly moral character and it is the stature of his character that originally motivates him to pick up the Hitcher. Grace (Sophia Bush) acts as a little devil on Jim's shoulder; she's not a bad character, just selfish and fearful. One wonders in a world more controlled or motivated by fear if she wasn't the more easily associated to character rather than highly moral character like Jim. This may be why there is the major shift at the end of the film with (ANOTHER SPOILER YOU'VE BEEN WARNED) death of Jim in the Semi truck scene.

    This dramatic shift also takes away from John Rider's character and motivations. In the original (MORE SPOILERS IN FACT CONSIDER THIS HOLE REVIEW A SPOILER AND SAVE SOME TIME) Jim inadvertently draws Nash (Jennifer Jason Leigh) into John's machinations and gets romantically involved with her along his arduous journey and meets her demise in the semi truck scene. Every intricate puzzle piece is laid by the Hitcher to darken Jim's character. To make Jim just like him theoretically so that he can leave a bit of himself behind and finally die. The motivations of John Rider may never been known but it was the depth of Rutger Hauer's pathos that drove the Hitcher character making him seem far more complex than it probably appeared on paper. Credit is due Robert Harmon for his direction in the 1986 version. Unfortunately this complexity is lacking in Sean Bean's version of the character who seems to be doing it for kicks more than anything else. Sure he has a death wish but he doesn't seem to be to broken up about it. In fact he seems to want to have his fun before he goes and hopes Grace will see it his way when she finally kills him. He only seems upset when she doesn't. There are no major turns to Grace's character as there were to Jim's in the original and you really just want to slap her most of the time for being such a selfish bitch. Oh well, who needs emotional character building or deconstructing anyway? The film itself just rushes from one remake version of an old scene to the next without really showing us anything new. It is just bigger and shinier. There are some editing glitches at the beginning and the old magically repairing window that plagues so many other movies. We could sure save a lot on window repairs or replacements if we had those movie versions. Scrapes, cracks, smashes and even bullet holes magically disappear, it is only when the entire window is smashed away that its done for. Please put these magic windows on the market if nothing else to save us paying our deductible and having our insurance payments go up. Magic window aside there are a few nice nods to the original with some of the old vehicles showing up in the new version, come on you got to love the old black T-Bird.

    All in all this is an OK film, but with everything that made the first film work missing, the audience really doesn't have anything to latch on to or care about. I think a complete rethinking of the original concept would have been worth it rather than a close remake and Sean Bean's natural accent probably would have added to the mystique of John Rider. Never ever have an actor cover up his accent; it just gives him more to act through. With the small amount of dialog you wonder why they even bothered to have him cover it up. On the upside the trailer for Simon Pegg's new film Hot Fuzz ran with the film and looks just as funny as Shaun of the Dead. There's your silver lining, but silver really isn't all that expensive so take it for what it's worth.

    ---RG
  • markpritzlaff24 January 2007
    3/10
    crap
    Look, I am a horror buff and I usually will watch just about any horror movie.

    However, this remake stuff has really got to stop. This was yet another typical remake trash fest. Top 40 music songs spliced into the sound track, WB quality acting and actors, and of course bad writing. It is disgusting that these hack Hollywood writers can not come up with anything original. All these chumps can do is steal a premise that worked once 20 years ago and still find a way to destroy it. The writer of this filth, Jake Wade Wall, is a no talent hack that must have sold his soul to the devil to get gainfully employed. This bum also destroyed another classic horror movie called When a Stranger Calls.

    Regardless, I believe that this horror remake craze has peaked judging by the ever diminishing box office returns for these movies. Since both the Dawn of the Dead and Texas Chainsaw Massacre remakes, each one of these movies has been doing poorer and poorer (can anyone say the Fog or Black Christmas).
  • Warning: Spoilers
    the first and maybe the most noticeable thing with this movie is that the main character is no longer the boy but is now his girlfriend. secondly the only thing that they left in that has to do with the original is the scene with the truck pulling the girl apart. but surprise, they did not even get that right. they had the boy, the main character in the original get torn apart. that wasn't even the most notable part of the original. the best part was of course when Jim is eating with john and finds a finger in his french fries. in addition they of course wildly altered the plot. the original had a man driving a car cross country for someone else as a job, when he picks up the hitcher. the new one has Jim and his girlfriend driving to a lake for spring break. all of the obvious aside, they cut out the crucial point of the movie: the guy getting Stockholms Syndrome and being unable to kill the killer. in the new one they pretty much said "oh look he didn't kill the scorpion! he doesn't have a killer instinct even if he is in danger." there was sub par acting in the main characters because they, like the "The Fog" remake, decided to reel in potential teen ticket sales by using people from teen dramas on the "CW" such as one tree hill or Smallville. this move to make the movie more visually appealing by using hot teen actors killed the already terrible dialogue, although i am sure that some people thought that the movie was great due to their use. these people don't know what a good horror movie is, because anything a little more scary than supernatural is sheer horror genius. i also doubt they understand sarcasm. the only reason that i don't give this movie a 1 out of 10 is that Sean Bean was not a terrible actor. neither was Neal Mcdonough. all in all remakes have an inherent flaw. they cant seem too much like the original, but they cant stray too much from the plot. this swell of remakes is destroying the movie business. the fog was not even good the first time around. why remake it?
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Need I say more? The first one was actually decent. Now are we going to remake a movie every 20 years and throw CG at them? How about working on the script, story, and believability? I stopped counting all the ridiculousness of this movie. But here's a few examples. Heading east on a highway to Houston, then in New Mexico, then north to Lake Havasu. Get an atlas! The 442 odometer kept showing 15509 every time it was shown, even after driving many miles. The struggle for the motel bathroom door, are you kidding me? She's holding him out, then when the door closes it's evident there's no lock on the inside, he can come right on in? The LT says he's going to take her to a Trauma Center in Albuquerque then parades the bad guy right in front of her, like that's not piling on the trauma? The Bible spouting family doesn't pull over when they fly off the cliff? She doesn't want to initially go back and pick up the hitcher, but later after they kill someone she wants to go back to them? Where does it end? There is no backstory on why he is the way he is, it's just random scenes with absolutely no rhyme or reason. Like I said, throw CG at the mess and hope people like it. It's an easy substitute for coherent storywriting, plausibility, and sense. Not even worth your time if they paid you to see it. Makes FD3 look like a masterpiece.
  • I just saw this at a preview screening, and I liked it. I think that if you haven't seen the original and have something against older looking movies then you will definitely enjoy this. On the other hand, I prefer the original and felt like society's money would be better spent actually purchasing the original on DVD (its cheap) then seeing this. That would be a great F YOU to Hollywood! Another idea would be for movie theatres to show the original movie for a little less price and see what kind of results they get.

    The movie itself is plenty intense, a decent amount of "boo scares", quick pace, attractive leads, decent acting (for the most part). Compared to the rest of the movies being released these days, I would say this is definitely above par. The only thing that I can't get over is how much alike the original it was.

    There are a couple differences (the girlfriend, and a few others) that didn't really add anything to the movie at all, and even with those differences (which you would think could actually change the movie a lot) a lot of scenes are almost shot for shot the same. Acting wise, I think the main male actor faired a little better than c thomas howell... and i like sean bean a lot, but unfortunately he seemed to be doing a rutger haurer impression the whole time (dunno if that was his choice, or the filmmakers) Sophia Bush, as attractive as she is... did not impress me very much acting wise, but she wasn't horrible either.

    All in all, I give this a 7, and I would personally give the original an 8.5. This one did some things better than the original, i think the original was more intense without feeling as "forced" as this one does (the level of brutality in movies feels pretty forced lately, you may understand what i mean, you may not) I honestly think that Hollywood could make some money if they would retouch some old movies and re-release them, and advertise them correctly.
  • The horror industry has had quite a big boom in the past five years or so, and most of the horror films you see today are remakes of older films. Some of them are really good, some of them are atrocious - but "The Hitcher" is one of the better remakes I've seen. This movie focuses on Grace (Sophia Bush) and Jim (Zachary Knighton), who are on a road trip during spring break. While driving one stormy night in the desert, they almost hit a man who is having car trouble, but speed off in fear. Later that night, they meet the man who they almost hit at a gas station, and end up offering him a ride to the nearest motel. Little do they know, the man who calls himself John Ryder (Sean Bean), is a maniac, and ends up pulling a knife on the couple. They manage to escape at the time, but the following day they are terrorized by the murderous hitchhiker along the highway, and become framed for a series of killings that he has been committing.

    Barely twenty years old, the original "Hitcher" was a great horror movie that wasn't really in need of a remake - but most of the horror films that are remade aren't in need of it either, so I suppose that's irrelevant. I'm glad I saw the original film (just days) before I went to see this remake, because it was interesting to compare the similarities and differences between the two. In some instances, this remake pulls things right out of the 1986 film, but also reworks the story and adds and removes certain elements. The reworking of the plot here is done really well - it stays faithful to the original movie while making it something of it's own as well, and I was happy with the way that everything was done in the writing department. There was plenty of action and some great scare moments, so people with short attention spans (which is probably the majority of this film's primary audience) will never get "bored" or find themselves unenlightened. The action and kills were very well executed though and the gore factor is brought up a few notches from the original, but doesn't go overboard. The classic chase sequence from the 1986 film is done here very well and is just as (if not more) exciting than the sequence was in the original.

    I have to admit, some of the action sequences were a little far-fetched, but the same goes for the original film too, so I can't criticize that. The cast wasn't bad. Granted, some of the acting was a little underdeveloped, but all in all the performances weren't bad. Sophia Bush plays the heroine, Grace, and while she doesn't give a great performance, she's likable enough to hold up her role and keep the audience sympathizing with her. Zachary Knighton plays her boyfriend, Jim (who is a variation of the original movie's hero), and is very good. Sean Bean probably gives the best performance though, playing the menacing John Ryder very well. He has the perfect look for the role, plus he's a good actor. I thought it would be hard to live up to Rutger Hauer's great performance, but I was surprised at how well it was done.

    Overall, "The Hitcher" is one of the better remakes out there. It could have been better, but not by a whole lot. It doesn't live up to the original film, but I wasn't expecting it to so I was pleasantly surprised with the way this film turned out. If you're a fan of the original, you may or may not want to see this, but I can say that I really liked the original myself and thought that this was an above-average remake. 7/10.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This movie was amazing.... amazingly bad. Michael Bay has succeeded in ruining a cult classic. He didn't just "modernize" it like Ms. Bush said in an interview; he ruined it. Lt. Esteridge was supposed to live so that Jim can become a cop, go to visit Esteridge later on and thus we had The Hitcher II: I've Been Waiting. But no! Jim, rather than Grace, was split in half by the semi; Esteridge gets shot in the head; and the annoying female lead survives. Bay took the scariest and most dramatic parts of the movie, such as the knife to the eye and when he's in the family's station wagon.... and winged the rest of it! I went in expecting something that resembled the first Hitcher, something that could at least lead up to Jake Busey being the 2nd crazy Hitcher. What I got was an entire disappointment. I wish I never saw this version; I want my money back. I expected more from a man who directed The Rock, Bad Boys 1 and 2, and even Armaggedon.
  • I was quite disappointed in the remake of this movie. When I hear remake, I normally expect it to follow most of the storyline, even if the characters are played by different actors. They left out the scene with Jim Halsey eating at a restaurant and finding a finger in his french fries, or the time he was in this barn and keys were thrown at him by Hauer (scared the daylights out of me), or when Hauer was driving down a side road shooting at the helicopters and cops, but didn't bother Halsey or his then girlfriend. The connection between Jim Halsey and John Ryder was so strong in the original version it was eery, and I loved the ending much better than the 2007 version - much more action-packed, and that darned Hauer just won't stay dead!!! Glad I saw this, just to see if a good remake could be done. The original is the BEST and HAUER is the best Hitcher around - just don't pick him up!!!

    And I'm not saying I don't like remakes - a lot of times they are very well done. I just won't give this the rating I was hoping I could...I would give it a 6. Now, let's get Hauer back out there in another creepy movie!!!!!!
  • Maybe, my expectations of this film were set too high. Frankly, I pondered why anyone would want to re-make what many genre fans (and movie buffs in general) already consider to be a cult-classic. Didn't anyone learn a thing about what usually happens to those who try to reinvent a classic (i.e. the poorly attempted re-make of 'Psycho', anyone?).

    For those of you whom have seen the original 1986 'Hitcher', it is best to leave your experience to that. The characters in this 2007 version barely conjure up a heartbeat, much-less able to hold the viewers attention for more than a few mere minutes at a time!

    That is not to say that the lack of dramatic affect is due solely to sub-par actors. It's complacency and sterileness is mostly due to a lack of vision and direction, rather than for a lack of competency on any of the actors behalf. Also, severely lacking is the film's score, which was a haunting staple in the original version, but which is barely of notice in this version.

    Did the 'Hitcher' require a reattempting? The answer is clear: No. The producer's of this film also produced the 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre' reduxs and while those films were successful both artistically as well in terms of box office dollars, their attempt here is quite unsuccessful at attempting to recreate the nerve-pounding suspense that only the original appears to be able to offer.

    Do not slow down. Drive past this one and don't even bother taking a second glance.
  • Hmmmmm, don't even bother with this one. I am not completely against remakes, but why remake a movie that's only 20 years old? Better yet, why remake a movie that many film buffs have seen and expect it to be a hit at the box office?

    Well, the same questions could be asked about The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2003, but the difference between that was that Chainsaw was a good movie that brought fresh ideas to a dying franchise. The Hitcher 2007 is almost exactly like the original, but everything that made the original interesting is lost in this one. No brutality, no sense of isolation, no creepiness to John Ryders character. The dialogue is also extremely lame, and even laughable at times, and the whole movie feels extremely rushed.

    The only few things that bring this movie up is a well choreographed struggled between Bush and Bean in a motel room and of course, Sophia Bush's performance, which is extremely impressive. This girl can act! Props to her doing the best she could with a zero script.

    As the credits rolled after the lame finale, I was glad this underperformed at the box office. A franchise being created out of this trash is the last thing I can see down the road.
  • I last saw this movie and thought it was a bit cheesy, the last time i saw the original "the hitcher" i was about 8 years old. so i took my original copy, dusted it off and watched it to compare the two. i can't believe that Rutger Hauer was replaced by somebody like Sean Bean anyway and the whole story line of the remake really was boring. maybe if they replaced Rutger by somebody like Micheal Madsen maybe then it would have been a believable actor in it's character. all and all i think this movie should be considered "never made" like "the matrix reloaded" and "revolutions" so if i could recommend anything to anybody... just buy the original it's superior to the remake. this movie was bound to fail and mess up a classic.
  • In my eyes the original is a classic. The tense action begins from the very moment it starts, and there aren't any annoying characters. It's a wonderful example of a horror film. So then, can anyone tell me what is the point of remaking a classic if you're just going to copy everything from it but no where near as effective and your going to add bits in which just add to the boredom?! CAN YOU TELL ME THAT! Sorry, I need to calm down :)

    Rob Zombie's "Halloween" and the remake of "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre" are two examples of how to do a good remake. They take the idea of the original but completely change what happens in the film to make it there own. "The Hitcher" is inadequate. The director turns a classic into a dopey teen movie. It's unengaging, unsurprising and laughable.

    Sean Bean is miscast as the hitcher. I'm sorry Sean Bean fans (Caroline :) but he just isn't menacing enough. I mean Mr. Bean can't act anyway ( well THE Mr Bean can, Rowan Atkinson does a fine job as that character) so that casting is all wrong!

    I must say that I did enjoy the final 10 minutes, I thought that was quite tense, but its still a damn copy. Its a replica and isn't as good. It's not exactly shot for shot but you know what's going to happen. Please, if you have any sense go and watch the original. Skip this one, its full of stupid characters, clichéd moments and Michael Bay produced it.

    Dear Michael Bay, please be original. Is that too much to ask?
  • Warning: Spoilers
    "The Hitcher" remake was a big disappointment IMAO. The whole set up was twisted into a beginning full of clichés, with Jim picking up his girlfriend Grace to go to Lake Havasu in his Oldsmobile 442. The main difference between the movies of course is the addition of a girlfriend for the trip. In that role, Sophia Bush actually does a pretty decent job. She's probably the best thing about this remake. Not surprisingly she won a Teen Choice Award for her performance, and deservedly so.

    The rest of the cast is just so-so. Zachary Knighton as Jim Halsey doesn't even come close to Howell's performance in the original, and it doesn't have enough intensity. Even Sean Bean, who I liked in other movies like "Troy", is a caricature here and trying to act like Rutger Hauer. He's not a scary killer. There are a few okay surprise moments, but the story in this one always feels dumb and unbelievable. The original was unbelievable too in a lot of ways but it just worked better because it was better made and acted.
  • I looked forward to the Hitcher remake since the original didn't quite get it right. It had moments and great ideas that I liked, sure. But overall, transparent gimmicks won out over exploring a wonderful premise. Maybe the remake would fix things? Iron out the details? Do things right? Yeah, these hopes came crashing down when I realized it would only compound the problem with even more gimmicks starting with an additional character, Grace.

    Now, Grace by herself? No problem. Grace with Jim against the titular Hitcher? Problem. Big problem. Two main characters means dialogue, which for the typical formula screenwriter means opening up Pandora's box. The thriller's plot slows to a crawl so they can chatter, and really, who the hell wants to listen to two characters hysterically informing each other of things we, the audience, can see ourselves? For example, the couple comes across a car on the side of the road. They know the Hitcher has struck. Jim approaches the car, telling Grace over and over (and over) again to, "Stay there! You don't want to see this!" To which she questions, "What is it? What's there?" "Stay there Grace! You don't want to see this! Oh it's horrible!" For all the time spent discovering the car, the bodies inside, and listening to these two, there's surprisingly little there except for the traditional jump scare.

    And if you're going to include another character to run around with Jim, write the scenes to play out for two characters instead of mindlessly regurgitating the original (written quite specifically for one character.) The whole "Say: I want to die" sequence, one of the few things I liked about the original loses all of its potency because the knife is on the wrong damn character. Granted it could theoretically play out that way, but as it stands in the film it wants to mimic the original with half-assed sloppy changes so it can make the shallow claim, "Look! I did something on my own." If you're going to change something, have the balls to follow through.

    One beef I have with remakes in general (like, The Fog for example) is the tendency for filmmakers to show more under the false pretense that this brings something worthwhile and original to the remake table. A key to any art form (whether it generates art or not) is the idea of restraint – knowing when to show something, knowing when to keep it in shadows, and knowing when to not even bother. The 2007 Hitcher wants to show you everything that happened off screen in the 1986 (the dead family, the equivalent to Nash's death, and how John Ryder escapes from custody) and it forgot to ask, "why did the original choose not to show these things?" and, more importantly, "would it be a better movie if it did?" Another gripe (also in the Fog remake) – the "bigger, badder" phenomena where the remake feels obligated to one-up the original. More explosions! Bigger explosions! More blood! More guns! More cars! Faster! Badder! Yay! Funny thing about the ridiculous, like for example Rutger Hauer taking down a helicopter with a revolver – outdoing it looks just plain stupid. I mean, someone got paid for this script? Why bother when any idiot could take a bottle of white out and some sticky notes to the original and get the same thing? And at the risk of turning this review into a list of complaints, lastly Grace, herself. Certainly the Hitcher had done enough killing, stalking, and taunting throughout the film to take a normal person to the brink of violence, certainly she had motivation for extracting revenge, strangely enough I did not buy that she'd actually arrived at that point to heartlessly pull the trigger despite everything else in play.

    Like many remakes, the Hitcher feels like an imitation. The 2007 version may have its hands on the wheel, but the 1986 original is the one really driving.
  • Another horror remake? No real surprise there. However what did catch me off guard was this one was actually halfway decent. While it didn't offer anything new, as it basically was a hash between the original and the straight to video sequel, the movie as a whole was good especially when compared to the garbage remakes we've been bombarded with these past few years. But considering the original wasn't all that great of a film technically speaking, then it'd be impossible to really consider this in that caliber either. It is safe to say though that "The Hitcher" accomplished what it set out for.

    The plot is utterly unbelievable but if you can let that go it's enjoyable. The acting is appropriate and Sean Bean was great. While I did wind up preferring Rutger Hauer, it was mainly due to the dark sense of humor he added to his character. Another difference between the two was Sean came across as detached and suicidal, while Rutger was the more cunning and evil nemesis…almost like an alter ego of the protagonist. Nevertheless, Sean was thoroughly able to creep the hell out of me with great success and achieved it with more subtlety. Sophia Bush was really good and to call her a sight for sore eyes in this would be an understatement. Neal McDonough as always played his typical supporting role with ease, despite being slighted with very little screen time. This was the first time I've watched Zachary Knighton on the big screen and he came through perfectly as an everyday real-looking college guy. For what this flick was, there surprisingly wasn't any really bad acting as usual. In fact even the 1986 version had many moments of straight cheese. So praise is in order for the cast without a doubt. That is if the characters themselves were written in better, as enough depth wasn't provided for them that made the audience actually want to care about anyone in particular.

    One odd thing I noticed that while there were many scenes which were exactly the same as its predecessors, about three of the more important ones from the first installment weren't incorporated, and did add a strike against it. As for the gore factor, it was certainly bumped up a notch…even to a horror level at some points and did show an incredible amount of violence. Another factor that made the original work slightly better was its cooler back-story. The role reversal in this one actually worked against it in the end, as it didn't make as much sense and took away from the overall storyline.

    As far as thrills go it was sufficient in this regard and had a lot of parts that made the viewer jump – however nothing too shocking. My personal favorite scene was the car chase since it utilized the perfect blend of cinematography, music, and action. Other factors that this movie had going for it was there wasn't much downtime. Even the slower parts didn't get boring. This was mainly due to the overall short length of the film in general but can also be attributed to excellent pacing. The blend of genres alternating between thriller, horror, and action was also carried out very effectively. That and the ending does provide the desired level of gratification. But that's about where the praise stops.

    If you want to be swept away or completely engulfed into extravagant cinema then this isn't what you're looking for. If you're looking for an okay experience as far as remakes go then you probably won't go wrong with this. True fans of the original will doubtfully be enthralled by this rendition though and I'd advise them to steer clear as nothing worthwhile is added in any sense. Ultimately Sophia Bush learns to never slow down again for any hitchhikers, but this is one time that in the end, it was worthwhile for me to stop for…just this once.
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