PLOT: A kid escapes from a sadistic hitchhiker that tried to kill him, but the hitchhiker soon terrorizes him, killing people along the way and framing the kid for them.
Rarely do you come across a horror movie that takes place primarily in daylight and in public, more or less. The Hitcher is one of these movies and it gives the film a really interesting aesthetic. You throw in a fine performance by Rutger Hauer, and you get a unique and phenomenal film from the 1980s.
C. Thomas Howell plays the kid that fatefully picks up Rutger Hauer’s Hitcher character at the beginning of the film, and for the rest of it, he’s on the run from the sadistic killer that seemingly has no motive for making his life a living hell. The greatest thing about this film is Rutger Hauer. He puts the Hitcher on another level, and it’s a surprise this film has been more or less forgotten, save for the time it got remade in 2008. The Hitcher is a great villain and Hauer somehow manages to give depth to a character that just seems to be a nonstop killing machine. He gives a soul to him that almost seems tragic, when he isn’t scaring the shit out of you.
This is a pretty tense film for about 75% of the runtime. There’s a point where the Hitcher himself becomes so unbelievable, that it takes a bit out of the scares. It’s still an edge-your-seat sort of situation, though, and Rutger Hauer is pretty fantastic as the Hitcher.
Scares Rating: 3.5 out of 5
There is plenty of gore, but it’s more in the action movie gore vibe than a horror movie. It’s probably due to the fact that it’s mostly gunplay. It’s not bad, though, just a different sort of flavor.
Gore Rating: 2.5 out of 5
Nothing. This has Jennifer Jason Leigh in it and she doesn’t even show thigh.
Sex/Nudity Rating: 0 out of 5
This is an underrated 80s horror movie. It has a great villain and is completely different than most horror movies out there. The best comparison I could make would be Steven Spielberg’s Duel, but Duel doesn’t benefit from a superb performance by Rutger Hauer.