A train pulls into the station – it’s the end of the line. A Hobo jumps from a freight car, hoping for a fresh start in a new city. Instead, he finds himself trapped in an urban hell. This is a world where criminals rule the streets and Drake, the city’s crime boss, reigns supreme alongside his sadistic murderous sons, Slick & Ivan. Amidst the chaos, the Hobo comes across a pawn shop window displaying a second hand lawn mower. He dreams of making the city a beautiful place and starting a new life for himself. But as the brutality continues to rage around him, he notices a shotgun hanging above the lawn mower… Quickly, he realizes the only way to make a difference in this town is with that gun in his hand and two shells in its chamber.
A title can often tell you so much about a film, whether it’s simply introducing you to the main character (E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, The Exorcist) or establishing the basic plot themes for potential audiences (Saving Private Ryan, The Usual Suspects) there’s a lot to be said for picking the correct title for a film. Jason Eisener’s first venture into the world of features pulls no punches with its title and instantly tells you what to expect. First and probably most obviously, this is going to be a film about (yep, you guessed it!) a Hobo with a Shotgun and secondly, expect a large dose of B-Movie/Grindhouse style.
Originating from the Tarantino/Rodriguez Grindhouse collaboration where Hobo began its life as a trailer in the original double bill (along with Machete), Eisener’s film is awash with over-saturated colours and blood-soaked violence. Riding high, at the centre of this violent tornado of a movie, we find Eighties action hero Rutger Hauer as the titular Hobo. With nothing to lose and everything to gain, Hauer’s performance as this down and out vigilante searching for justice is a joy to watch. Hauer manages to almost single handedly carry this film on his aging shoulders, managing to make his armed bum at times sympathetic, but always on the edge, never knowing what to expect next (well he is tired and needs $ for a lawnmower!).
Not to be taken too seriously and only for a certain niche market, Hobo with a Shotgun is certain to provide some retro-styled, action-packed, gore-filled fun for those able to appreciate its qualities.