The Hike is the work of writer, director, producer and star, Dave Fugett. It tells the story about an estranged couple that decide to go on a hike in the mountains and try and reconcile or decide to divorce. The setup is a long one as we learn more about the couple Brooke (Monica Olive) is the wife that has had enough of her husband Derek's (John Beland) drinking and excuses. Derek just wants to reconcile with his wife and rejoin the family with their young daughter but admits he hasn't stopped drinking.
Soon after, the film takes a dark turn as unexpectedly, Derek is shot in the foot. Confused, Monica tries to seek help so, upon returning to their vehicle, she meets a helpful stranger named Grady, played menacingly enough by Dave Fugett.
Grady offers help which Monica accepts, instead Grady kidnaps the couple and over the course of the rest of the film submits them to sadistic mental and physical torture.
The first thing that stands out is the superior acting in the film. Indie films are hit or miss when it comes to this department but, Fugett nailed it with his choice of actors. On why he chose to play Grady, he said in a Q&A after the film screened "If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself". And it worked. Grady was a despicable character we hated and wanted revenge on. The character had no back story to speak of and we didn't need one, we knew all we needed to know in a short time. The film had a flow to it that unraveled itself similar to some of the best thrillers. The characters felt real and organic, the chemistry was there and worked remarkably well.
What made the film is the fact that it's formula is one of the best a thriller like this can have, it can actually happen. The scariest things in life are the things that can happen to anyone at any time. We know we aren't going to be hacked to pieces by Jason Voorhees but, we don't know if we will run into a Grady on our next camping trip.
The Hike is currently making it's festival rounds so, if it comes to your area, make sure you see it, this is one film that will stick with you for a long time. Those are after all, the best films, ones that infect your mind.
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