“A lot of strange things happen in this world — things you don’t know about in Grand Rapids, things you don’t want to know about, doors that shouldn’t be opened.”
Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:
Response to Peary’s Review:
— things slowly go downhill, as Scott’s months-long undertaking (why don’t we ever see him checking in on his business back home?) turns into simply a convenient pretext for “exposing” the underground porn and prostitution industry — an expose which these days no longer seems all that shocking.
Scott’s performance is as fine and true as always, but his character as written doesn’t possess much of an arc — even once he begins opening up to a fresh-faced young prostitute (very nicely played by Season Hubley), we see little evidence of any real character transformation. The film’s deeply unsatisfying ending involves a sudden slo-mo action sequence (what happened to Schrader’s eye for naturalism?), an inexplicable shooting, and a cursory reunion between father and daughter. Given its intriguing premise and fine performances, Hardcore should ultimately have been much better than it is.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments: