Movie Review: Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016)

Ah, the woods. Despite being filled with insects and sometimes murderous animals, I love the place. The smells, the sights… it’s all great. Really, I like hiking and camping. That’s it for now, let’s move on to the review!

Ladies and gents… “Hunt for the Wilderpeople”.

After Ricky (Julian Dennison) goes missing in the woods, his foster uncle (Sam Neill) starts looking for him and eventually finds him. But soon they decide to stay in the woods which triggers a nationwide manhunt for the pair. So now we have a wacky adventure that was heartfelt, fast-paced, and incredibly entertaining. There’s a surprising amount of layers to the plot. Not in a “complicated and emotional Oscar-worthy drama”, but in a way where it’s not just some typical one-note adventure-comedy. There are a lot of nuances to it that makes it really interesting. So yeah, this movie has a great plot.

The characters in this movie are all very quirky, unique, and endlessly entertaining. Sam Neill is fantastic as this old and grumpy man who doesn’t really want to take care of the troublesome kid at first. Julian Dennison does a really god job as the kid that really is the cause of the entire manhunt. I also want to mention that he and Sam Neill got excellent chemistry and I never got tired of seeing them interact with each other. We also got Rachel House as the child services lady that is after our “heroes” throughout the entire movie and she was great. We also got Oscar Kightley as an officer that follows Rachel House through the entire movie and he was really good and the two actors worked very well together. Overall I’d say that it’s a great cast, with all of them giving great performances.

The score for the movie was composed by Moniker and it was really good. I mean, it was a really odd and unique score, but I think that is why it was as great/fitting as it was. It has a very odd sound that I don’t know how to explain, but it wasn’t your conventional movie score sound, but I like that… makes it stick out a bit more. And like I said, it fit the movie very well. There were also some licensed tracks used throughout the movie that were overall good and also fit the scenes they were used in very well.

This movie was directed by Taika Waititi (who also makes a cameo in the movie) and I have to say that I thought he did a great job. It’s a very good looking movie with several shots in the movie making me go “Wow!”. But what I like the most with his directing is that it helps to elevate the humor in the movie. Speaking of humor, since this is a comedy… was it funny? Yeah, I laughed quite a bit. There’s a good mix of both visual humor and punchlines. There were points where I chuckled and there were points where I laughed out loud. So overall I’d say that the comedy in this comedy was pretty fucking funny.

This movie has been very well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 97% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 81/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,9/10.

“Hunt for the Wilderpeople” is an incredibly charming adventure with tons of heart and personality. It has a great plot, great characters, great performances, great music, great directing, and great humor. Time for my final score. *Kaw kaw*. My final score for “Hunt for the Wilderpeople” is a 9,87/10. So it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “Hunt for the Wilderpeople” is now completed.

Shit. Just. Got. Real.

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6 thoughts on “Movie Review: Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016)

  1. I love this movie. It’s my favourite of Waititi’s and he’s got a bunch of good ones. I’m really curious what he will do with Thor and hoping that gets him the exposure he deserves. Because as you said, this movie is hilarious and his directing is a big reason why.

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