Originally scheduled for release in late September, Universal Pictures’ “The Hunt” was cancelled when the film faced backlash for its jarring scenes of gun violence after the two recent mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. The debate over this film is justifiable, but the public’s opinion on the movie’s political message shouldn’t have influenced the studio’s decision to cancel the film.
Written by Damon Lindelof and Nick Cuse, “The Hunt” follows the story of a dozen “deplorables” who are being hunted for sport by a group of wealthy, powerful individuals known as the Hunters.
The movie received a substantial amount of criticism from people who viewed the trailers, which display violence toward unarmed targets. Already seen as insensitive to some, these trailers were promoted and advertised in the same week of the Dayton and El Paso shootings, which made the movie’s release viewed as even more inappropriate and ill-timed.
However, censoring the entire film doesn’t seem reasonable because it would have been better to postpone the film’s release until time had passed after the shootings, when people have become less sensitive to the film’s content.
While the movie’s violence made it a contentious issue because of the shootings, it was mostly the political themes in the film that made it controversial.
The film, portrayed as a political satire by producer Jason Blum, received disapproval because the movie takes place in an alternate America and depicts liberal elites hunting “deplorables,” or conservatives, for sport.
Director Craig Zobel argued that the message of his film was misrepresented by the media. He explained that the movie was “intended as an equal-opportunity satire.” Although the movie prods liberals and conservatives, both political groups will still see it as an attack on themselves.
The political outrage over “The Hunt” is the main reason why the movie was cancelled. However, no one, not even critics, have seen the film. Perhaps it’s much too early to pass judgement on a film when it hasn’t been released yet.
The film should not receive criticism from viewers who have not seen the entire movie. Maybe it’s better to give the movie a chance before completely shutting it down.