When you think of Australia you probably think of The Outback, but like every other continent, it has many other terrains including the forests of Tasmania, an island just south of the mainland which is home to the Tasmanian devil. The forests there were also home to the Tasmanian tiger, the last of which died in captivity in 1936. And though they have been believed to be extinct for over seven decades, there remain many sightings across Tasmania.
That is the basis for The Hunter where Willen Dafoe (Auto Focus) plays the titular character looking for the last remaining Tasmanian tiger for a company that wants the elusive animal for nefarious reasons. Naturally the locals, especially the loggers, are not too fond of foreigners even when they are poising as zoologists. It also does not help they he is stuck renting at the home of a bed stricken women with two kids and a husband who got lost in the same woods Defoe will be going into to do his tracking.
Of course Sam Neill (Happy Town) plays a mysterious figure who is more interregnal to the story than his initial meeting would have you believe (basically every Sam Neill role). With his introduction, we slowly learn there is more to the story and the characters involved that a simple animal capture. Even though it takes a while to unfold, the shots of the Tasmanian wilderness are beautiful and breathtaking (and I would assume are even more so on the blu-ray). And Dafoe’s performance, who spends half the film alone on the hunt) is memorizing to watch as he starts to realize just what he is getting himself into and how he plots to get out of.
The Hunter DVD comes with an audio commentary track with director Daniel Nettheim and producer Vincent Sheehan. The deleted scenes, which runs about eight minutes total, also have optional commentary. There is also a four part Making of The Hunter feature that runs about a half an hour.
Full Disclosure Notice: This DVD was given to me by Bender/Helper Impact for the purpose of reviewing it.