30 May 2024
The Hitcher (1986)
97 min.
Directed by Robert Harmon.
With Rutger Hauer, C. Thomas Howell, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Jeffrey DeMunn.
Simple, successful variation of Richard Franklin's Road Games (1981), this powerful thriller concerns unassuming driver Howell who picks up hitchhiker Hauer (in a tour de force performance here), then pushes him out after the stranger displays violent tendencies.

Unfortunately for Howell, that's only the beginning. Hauer then begins offing people in gory manners...and setting up the murders to look like as if they were committed by Howell.

The dusty desert setting serves the experience well, the atmosphere is tense & raw.

Echoes the best of efforts like Night Terror (1977) and Spielberg's Duel (1971).

The trucker-pull scene with Leigh is a real suspense standout, well shot and excellently paced.

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