Movie Review: The HoardNovember 21, 2018
Blood in the Snow Canadian Film Festival 2018
In this wonderful mash-up of Hoarders meets Ghost Hunters, The Hoard leaves no comedy stone unturned as it gleefully rolls along from start to finish poking fun at everything in its path. I don’t know who had more fun, the people in front of or behind the camera, but it was obvious that a great time was had by all.
A team is put together to film the juggernaut of all TV reality shows, ‘Extremely Haunted Hoarders’. There are three teams consisting of two people each tackling lifelong hoarder Murphy Evans and his THREE houses. Professional organizer Shelia Smyth (Lisa Solberg) is in ‘charge’ here, teaming up with hoarder expert Dr. Lance Ebe (Tony Burgess) to tackle the big issues. Clairvoyant Chloe Black (Elma Begovic) and techie Caleb Black (Ry Barrett) are another team, no longer married due to a bisexual ghost (yes, you read that correctly) with contractor Duke Jango (Marcus Ludlow) and renovator The Falcon (Justin Darmanin) rounding out the other two teams.
Directors Jesse Thomas Cook and Matt Wiele do a wonderful job taking the frantic and manic energy these actors produce and wrap it all up in a hilarious mockumentary that never really loses steam. They know exactly what kind of film they want to make and the contained craziness is really a joy to behold. There are moments when the film threatens to go too far one way or another but Cook and Wiele manage to keep everyone on point while keeping the energy and comedy vibe high and loose.
While the first half of the movie is mostly comedic shenanigans and great one-liners, the second half introduces some blood and gore and people start to lose it. It was fun watching the calm and collected duo of Smyth and Ebe begin to lose it, especially Ebe, and Burgess plays him with wonderful abandon. Barrett and Begovic have great chemistry together as well, making their bizarre behavior seem actually plausible. However, it was The Falcon, Duke, and Ivey who really go off the rails and it’s a joy to watch. Justin Darmanin’s speech near the end of the movie was great as well, reminding me of Bluto’s great bit of verbal inspiration from Animal House.
I actually would have been quite happy if The Hoard was pure comedy/mockumentary and skipped the blood and guts altogether, it was that good, but the second half of the movie does go completely bonkers and that also had its charms as well. I would also love to know how much of this movie was actually scripted and how much was made up on the fly. Either way, there are some wonderful lines that were delivered in just the right way, adding more chaos to an already chaotic scene.
The Hoard is over the top in the best ways, taking topics like ghost hunting and hoarding and mashing them together into an insane comedic delight that I highly recommend you check out.
Four and a half stars out of five
The Hoard makes its WORLD PREMIERE on Sunday, November 25th at 7 pm at the Royal Cinema