BLOOD OF THE HUNTER, a thriller set in the North American wilderness, combines a stalking scenario with an old family mystery, with Michael Biehn doing his specialty turn as a good-looking psycho.
Upon the death of his estranged father, trapper Yan Thoreau (Gabriel Arcand) leaves with the blessing of his spouse, Marie (Alexandra Vandernoot), to claim his inheritance. Lurking behind the icy wilderness crags is a stranger, Philip Thornton (Michael Biehn), dedicated to framing Yan for the
murder of a postal worker, the better to woo Yan's wife for himself.
Philip murders a Mountie, Corporal Blake (Pascal Guegan), and then poses as the slain officer in order to horn in on Yan's connubial territory and to officially arrest Yan for slaying the mailman. With the help of an Indian scout, Pastamoo (Vincent Cassell), Philip locates Marie's secluded cabin
and shoots himself. Her own sense of decency obliges her to nurse him back to health.
Meanwhile, friends of the Thoreaus, including Iowaka (Glenda Stevens), an Indian maiden who has visions about lustful Philip, tries to find Yan so they can warn him about the murder charges sullying his good name. From an attorney (who subsequently tries to have him ambushed), Yan not only gets
gold bullion but also learns of the existence of a half-brother, Philip, who so resented his father's emotional preference for his half-breed son, Yan, that Philip slew his dad and swore vengeance against the man he felt had usurped his rightful place in his father's heart.
As Yan races homeward, Marie tries hiding from Philip in her basement storeroom after he's shown his true colors. Ostensibly agreeing to wed him if he spares Yan's life, Marie is taken prisoner on the homicidal maniac's sled. But their flight is stymied by resourceful Yan. Recalling that his
fiddle playing drives certain huskies mad, Yan makes music that causes Philip's mushers to overturn the sled and tear him to bits.
With its noticeably tinny sound recording and predilection for nature photography at the expense of plot advancement, BLOOD OF THE HUNTER plays like a Yukon version of HALLOWEEN (1978). Although the physical production is authentically rugged and austere, this is the kind of clumsy movie where the
actors seem to clomp about in snowshoes--even indoors. And this adventure yarn could have used some energy-charged performances to heat up the freeze-dried familiarity. (Graphic violence, adult situations.)
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- Released: 1995
- Rating: PG-13
- Review: BLOOD OF THE HUNTER, a thriller set in the North American wilderness, combines a stalking scenario with an old family mystery, with Michael Biehn doing his specialty turn as a good-looking psycho. Upon the death of his estranged father, trapper Yan Thorea… (more)