Pig Hag Image

Pig Hag

By Alan Ng | June 4, 2021

NEW TO AMAZON PRIME! The best inspiration for a cinematic odyssey is personal experience. As a filmmaker, you’re emotionally connected to the story, while at the same time, no one can ever claim the wild tale you’re telling never really happened. Such is the case with Colby Holt and Samuel Probst’s feature film Pig Hag. While they are not the story’s subjects, they were on hand to watch it unfold in real life.

The movie is about a young woman, Jodie (Anna Schlegel), from Los Angeles. She’s a nurse, loves Guns N’ Roses, and surrounds herself with a small group of gay friends. Her problem? She’s alone. Jodie lives alone in her apartment, goes to concerts by herself, and her only friends are her incompatible male entourage.

Pig Hag opens with Jodie finding she has a troll harassing her via text. He calls her fat and pathetic and bestows the titular insult. As trolls do, they text continually, hoping to get a rise out of their victims, and Jodie falls into the trap by responding. I would refuse to acknowledge the texts in hopes they stop, but I know people like Jodie. Folks who are compelled to fight back even though they know the harassment will not end and responding only fuels the fire.

After a Guns N’ Roses concert, while coming down from her Axl Rose high, Jodie decides to get drunk at a local liquor store on the way to her motel. Sad and drunk on the sidewalk in front of the store, she meets Dustin (Tony Jaksha), who decides to be friendly and shows a little concern for this stranger’s state of being. A passive-aggressive encounter ensues, ending with Jodie and Dustin spending the night together. The next morning, a series of vomiting and misspoken words between her and Dustin sends Jodie into an emotional tailspin.

“…a series of vomiting and misspoken words between her and Dustin sends Jodie into an emotional tailspin.”

Pig Hag is less a traditional narrative and more a glimpse into Jodie’s life over a handful of days. The film is not about trolling or one-night stands, but about the difficulties of finding love for people in L.A. who are not hot actresses or skinny fitness models. For Jodie, her idea of finding real romance is shattered, and she turns to some dark places in the end to find some kind of connection with anyone.

Holt and Probst’s love story replaces the wine and roses of romance with the cursing and vulgarities of real life. The true star and the reason to watch the movie is Anna Schlegel as Jodie. She puts it all out there—her anger, vulnerabilities, and sexuality. Every flaw and quirk are all on full display. She’s abrasive, yet likable and her performance covers the entire spectrum from a rage-fueled rant cursing out her gay friends to a quiet close-up at the end.

Directors Holt and Probst also made a colossal editing decision that I think ultimately paid off. The story and events surrounding Jodie and Dustin’s one-night stand are not told in chronological order. Moments before and after the incident are spliced into their initial encounter. The decision to edit the film this way was done after the fact and paid off, as it manages expectations for the overall tone.

In the end, I walked away from Pig Hag reminded of why I love watching indie movies. Holt got to tell his story, free from big studio influence.

Pig Hag screened at the 2019 SXSW Film Festival.

Pig Hag (2019)

Directed: Colby Holt, Samuel Probst

Written: Colby Holt

Starring: Anna Schlegel, Tony Jacksha, Nate Stoner, Pete Zias, Michael Henry, Andrew Kudla, etc.

Movie score: 7/10

Pig Hag Image

"…Schlegel...puts it all out there..."

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  1. Nurse Jackie says:

    I wish I could get back the time I wasted on this movie. A fat, unhealthy nurse with anger management issues blows things way out of proportion because she can’t deal with her s**t in my opinion makes her an a*****e. I found her to be a complete idiot especially in how she constantly responded to her internet troll, it’s called block but instead of that or even ignoring she continues to engage which honestly makes her really dumb. As someone who works in healthcare it was a bit disappointing to see she’s a nurse who gave zero s***s about her health. No character development whatsoever, she’s still an a*****e by the end of it. Her gay friends were awesome and honestly they deserve better than her. I found no pity for her as someone who also struggled with weight but I can’t stand a******s who blame the world for their shortcoming. Calling her a pig was a insult to an intelligent animal, her actions are closer to that of a Neanderthal. The character’s personality is trash, she reeks of desperation too that’s why she can’t find someone. Watching every scenes was a train wreck. -3 out of 5 stars for this movie.

    • Angie says:

      Pretty judgemental there miss perfect. You’re a great contributor to massive ugliness in today’s world. I’ve been in the medical field over 35 years and rarely do you see providers who truly take care of themselves, but at least they’re tongues aren’t as sharp as yours. You obviously lack empathy and compassion, maybe you should consider a career change. And you completely missed the whole point of the movie.

  2. Ri says:

    It was a bit much for me. We all gone thru loneliness but the esperation omg it way to much and gringy to watch. Jesus!

    • Alan Ng says:

      To me, that was the appeal of the movie. It was following her down this truly dark path that set it apart from similar stories.

  3. Lauren says:

    It is tragic what happened to this woman but her gay male friends were wonderful in their own weird way. She clearly displayed a difficulty handeling rejection. However I couldn’t but applaud in the end when she ripped up the bandana that Dustin left her as a parting gift, and spilled Gatorade and Pepto all over it ceremoniously as an end to this fellow. He really
    didn’t ghost her as was believed; he simply intended it to be a one night stand! I was once a heavy metal concert going chick in my younger years and been through the whole ringers of shabby treatment by metal concert going guys. When you’re that drunk and high can you remember the person’s name the next day when you get up? The ending with her driving into the sunset in an RV with her gay male friends was a happy one and inoffensive.

  4. Lisabetta says:

    One of the least likeable characters i can imagine. Zero redeemable about her character and shame on the director for letting the actress turn her rage up to 11 in every single scene. No nuance in the least. Like watching a car wreck.

  5. Wendy says:

    Ok I went back and forth with writing something and I gotta say it. Big, fat, skinny, short, tall, it doesn’t matter if you’re an aggressive sarcastic a*****e no one is going to like you. I don’t get how the whole time she’s pleasant to those who don’t deserve it and a raging bitch to the ones who are nice. And talk about oversharing. Easy chief! Girlfriend might need to work on some serious issues before worrying about getting a significant other.

  6. Scott says:

    Amazingly raw story of loneliness and desperation. I wanted ti give her resources. Great indie ride.

  7. Barbara says:

    Please explain how an RN can get that huge on cigarettes and beer. Sad commentary on loneliness, abuse, self mutalation. Acting was superb. Drags at times but worth the watch.

  8. Glynis Herrmann says:

    I totally can relate to Pig Hag and its main character. Her emotion was what got me. I have felt the pain she felt. It wasn’t under the same circumstances, but I recognize and empathize with her agony. Very well done film.

  9. Lisa Wells says:

    I’m not her size but I felt I could relate to her. I have had those rejected feelings like she portrayed. Good film and a good actress was chosen. I’m sure others feel the same as I do.

  10. Jim P says:

    Pig Hag was one of the big surprise for me at SXSW. Raw and emotional to the point where it may be hard to watch in spots. That’s just testament to the honest storytelling and the unfiltered way it presents its main character, Jodie. And the central performance was amazing.

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