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The Hills Have Eyes in our magazines

THE MOVIE: The Hills Have Eyes

Aaron Stanford • Kathleen Quinlan • Emilie De Ravin
DIRECTOR: Alexandre Aja

Not for the sqeamish! THE CONCEPT:
Reinterpretation of Wes Craven’s 1977 Horror classic about a dysfunctional family road trip that turns into a struggle for survival when they come across a desolate stretch of desert and are attacked by local mutants

U.S. RELEASE: March 10 2006, Nationwide • Rated: R


WES CRAVIN (Producer):
“This is a mere shadow of the original [he laughs]. If it’s better than mine, that’s fabulous. I think they’re both very intense films, but Alex certainly made it his own.”

“Wes told me, ‘I would like you to think about a new approach and a new take on the material that would justify why there should be a new The Hills Have Eyes in 2006.’ So with my writing partner, Greg Levasseur, we regrouped and thought about how to reinvent the movie. We went back to him with this idea of the nuclear testing background, and he was very excited about the idea, and seeing the testing area, the village, the look of the Hills people. So we started writing it in French because it was our first language – for scary movies there is no language barrier. Fear is the same everywhere. Then we supervised the translation of it into English.”

“I’m not a Horror fanatic but I love smart Horror films. I loved the re-make of Dawn of the Dead, which I thought was a very intelligent film about people put in extreme situations, where all the laws and rules and safeguards of society are just thrown out the window. What do people do in these extreme situations? How do they behave? It turns out for the most part they’re just as dangerous as the monsters that they’re confronting. That’s what I liked about this movie, it is ordinary people put in this very extraordinary situation and what happens to them.”

“Brenda is sort of a typical 17-year-old, who is put in a situation of going on spring break in an Airstream with her family in the desert, so she’s not very happy during the first part of the film. Then her character really develops into realizing how precious time is with the people who you love. You don’t know how long that time is ever going to be.”

“I wanted to do a real survival film, which means that it’s really an experience [for the audience]. It’s something you’re going to live, instead of something that you’re going to watch.”

“I enjoyed the original movie; I can see why it’s a classic. It was made the same year I was born, in 1976, so to think that Wes was able to make that kind of movie back then, and with the ludicrously small budget he had, is a wonderful feat.”

DE RAVIN on the scene where the mutants sexually attack her:
“It was hard to shoot, but after a few days you forget it. More than the physical stuff for me, the emotional stuff really drains me. But the actors playing the mutants were really nice. It was kind of weird, because they’re so mean and disturbing in the film. Michael [Bailey Smith] is three times my size, so when he squeezed my wrist too hard he almost broke my fingers.”

Written by Judy Sloane. Back to top

Visit the official The Hills Have Eyes site
Images above © Fox Searchlight Pictures
Feature © 2006 Visual Imagination.
Not for reproduction.

Film Review, #668, April 2006 cover

Keep up with the latest movie news, reviews and features with every issue of Film Review and for the world of Horror look for Shivers

Shivers, March 2006 cover

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