Eli Roth deserves some praise. After having been ridiculously lauded for his crappy debut film, "CABIN FEVER", his latest, "HOSTEL", while not original in concept, does showcase some fine talent. A twisted sort of "MOST DANGEROUS GAME" finds a group of friends trekking over Europe, and hearing about a Hostel in Slovakia where easy sex with beautiful girls is easy. After venturing there, it's soon obvious that the beautiful girls the guys meet are part of an elaborate trap to lure them as victims of a secret group that offers its members the thrill of killing people in any horrible way, for a fee.
While it's not hard to predict what's going to happen from scene-to-scene, Roth demonstrates a visual style and a grasp of editing that moves the film along in an environment that alternates between dreamlike to fantasy to horror, quite fluidly. It's unnerving and gripping, but most importantly, never dull.
SONY has preserved the film's 2.35:1 aspect ratio with 16:9 enhancement. Colors are solid and the blacks are perfectly rendered here. The darkest scenes offer incredible detail. Fleshtones are perfectly rendered.
SONY has provided a Dolby Digital 5.1 mix. It's extremely aggressive, offering numerous atmospheric effects and a strong bass presence, boosting the menacing background to key scenes. Dialogue is always intelligible and free from distortion.
SONY has provided plenty of extras, including numerous commentary tracks. The best one offers Quentin Tarantino as one of the guests, and it's easy to recognize his contribution to the film's production and script.