My father’s been hounding me to watch The Hills Have Eyes since it came out in 2006. A favorite film of his, he was sure I’d love it too. I enjoyed the original film greatly, but I didn’t love the sequel. Now, decades later, the film gets a remake. Lucky for us, Wes Craven produced this second-time-around, so all is not lost. My issues with the original film were that the premise was good, but it wasn’t gory, graphic or scary enough. This remake resolves those issues. There’s more blood and screams, but underneath it all is still the same great premise.
Just like the original, The Hills Have Eyes follows a family caravaning across the country. Their cars break down in the middle of nowhere, leaving them to fend for themselves against the creepy people that live in the hills. In the original, the cannibals in the hills are merely inbred and unintelligent. In this remake, the cannibals are deformed from living in a nuclear testing site. This change alone upped the fear ante and made the villains a much more formidable pack. What’s great about this movie is it takes all the good things from the original and just builds upon them. It doesn’t change anything drastically or screw up a good thing. Many of the scenes in this film are exact reproductions of the original.
While the cannibals are creepy and scary, the biggest villain in this film continues to be the feeling of helplessness. This family has no resources, no cell phone service, no extralifelines...nothing. Having no resources is a terrifying feeling and I definitely felt that throughout this film. Combine that with violence, gore and the gross feeling cannibals provide and you’ve got yourself a winning film.
Hell must have frozen over because I gave this remake a higher score than the original. The Hills Have Eyes is a captivating tale rife with blood, gore, and scares. It is one of the best horror films to watch because it’s a good, old-fashioned revenge horror. Three films into this franchise, the hills of horror island certainly have eyes and everyone should watch out.
If you liked The Hills Have Eyes (2006), you might also like The Hills Have Eyes, The Hills Have Eyes Part II or The Silence of the Lambs.