Hobo with a Shotgun (2011) Review:

At least it does what it says on the tin.

It's not big and it's not clever.
It’s not big and it’s not clever.

Cast: Rutger Hauer, Molly Dunsworth, Pasha Ebrahimi, Robb Wells, et al…

Director: Jason Eisener

Runtime: 86 minutes

Plot: A homeless man comes into a new city to find it is run by a vile crime boss and his two horrid sons. Seeing the tortures inflicted upon the citizens of the city he attempts to destroy the crime lord the only way he can – with a shotgun.

Hobo with a Shotgun is a throwback movie, a throwback to the schlock exploitation movies of the 1970s and 1980s. Everything about the movie is bad – it’s meant to be – and I do not understand how anyone could find it entertaining, maybe I’m an old fuddy-duddy, but I just found the whole film abhorrent and distasteful.

Sure, Hobo with a Shotgun is a film that knows what it’s doing, it doesn’t take itself seriously, it looks, sounds and acts like a throwback exploitation movie and it is not too long. It has all the right ingredients for a fun, obscene film, but it is overdone and left a bad taste in my mouth.

The film would have been better if it were about a homeless man struggling to get a lawn mower.
The film would have been better if it were about a homeless man struggling to get a lawn mower.

There are many, many films out there that offer ultra-violence, some of which can be quite good fun (The Raid for example), but Hobo with a Shotgun is just bad. The story of the film is good enough, the hobo (Rutger Hauer) at least has noble intentions, and it is good to see characters get exactly what they deserve, but there is something off about this film to me.

Perhaps it is in the violence itself. I have seen loads of violent movies and I have played loads of violent videogames and it has never bothered me before, but as I sat watching Hobo with a Shotgun all I could think was that it was horrible and not enjoyable to watch. For a lot of the film the gore was too much (I know it’s meant to be like this) and to me felt wholly unjustifiable, it’s like watching a masochist’s porno.

Masochist, sadist, whatever you call it, for me Hobo with a Shotgun glorifies violence as well as sexualises violence and this does not sit well with me. I do not want to watch a topless girl dancing in spraying blood, it is one step too far (the spraying blood or topless girl is fine, we don’t need both together). When the violence is more justified and less sexualised however, Hobo with a Shotgun improves – but it is never good.

A hobo, with a shotgun.
A hobo, with a shotgun.

Rutger Hauer on the other hand, provides the only positive I can truly give to the film – his performance. Without Hauer (or the name), this film would not have received any attention, without Hauer, this film would be of no merit.

I know I am not the audience for this kind of film, but I find it strange that there is a market to begin with. Anyone who can laugh and enjoy this film is in my mind forcing it just to show off to their mates. I feel bad for writing off a film due to its explicit nature, but Jason Eisener’s Hobo with a Shotgun forced my hand.


Call me a prude, wuss, whatever, Hobo with a Shotgun is a nasty, horrid little film that actually sickens me to some extent. I’ve at least gained one thing from watching this, I now know to not waste my time or money on pieces of garbage like this – I’ll stick to Taxi Driver if I want films about people getting rid of the scum.



2 thoughts on “Hobo with a Shotgun (2011) Review:

  1. Honestly, it was so dumb and over-the-top, I couldn’t help but have fun. Even if the low production-values did sometimes get too in the way of what could have been an even more disgusting and outrageous movie. Good review.

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