Hipster Holocaust is the story of a party in Hollywood that goes horribly awry. Well, not so much a party as a get-together of a bunch of friends whose tolerance for each other seems strained at best (but, hey, cool kids got to stick together).
Buddy (Eamon Glennon) and Wendy (Ashley Huizenga) are the ones hosting the house party at their not-so-humble abode, even though Wendy sees fit to sleep through most of it and not visit with the guests. Max (Geoff Long) is the philosopher sort who just so happens to have David Lee Roth’s Van Halen haircut and Elvis Costello’s eyeglasses, and Daisy (Ayana Hampton) is Wendy’s friend and Buddy’s mistress on the side. Unemployed filmmaker and stand-up comedian Grahm (Brennan Hill) drops by to pitch Buddy on his latest project while his girlfriend Cat (Hannah Foster), who he hopes to propose to, may or may not be attending the party later on.
Max and Daisy have a run-in with an aggressive bum (played by a Film Threat favorite filmmaker, Damon Packard) while on their way to a liquor store, and are “saved” by strangers Darren (Ignacio Genzon) and Patrick (Nitai Cook). As a sign of appreciation, Max and Daisy invite Darren and Patrick back to the party.
Darren and Patrick don’t quite fit in, however. Darren is all leather jacket and attitude and Patrick is a stringy bundle of freakish energy. The word “slimey” comes to mind most often, predominantly due to the slippery way in which he moves and the general uneasiness his presence causes.
While those two are odd, the others in the group aren’t much better. Buddy seems like a douchebag most of the time (and he is cheating on his wife, even putting the moves on Daisy while Wendy sleeps), Max seems all style with no substance, Daisy has her morals out of whack and there’s a lack of backbone to Grahm that makes him less than interesting as well. In other words, we the audience get to hang out at a party with two weirdos and a handful of other obnoxious personalities.
After a while, the two strangers wind up being too strange for the morally questionable Buddy to accept, and he asks the men to leave… which is when the s**t hits the fan, as Darren and Patrick have other, far more violent, ideas about how they want to continue their evening.
Hipster Holocaust looks crisp and clean, which is all the more disturbing when the things that are onscreen wind up being dirty; you get too clear a look for comfort. Nitai Cook’s off-kilter performance as Patrick steals most of the screen that he inhabits, though Ignacio Genzon’s Patrick more than holds his own. The two play off each other perfectly, and both bring a different level of psychopath to the story.
When it arrives, the gore in the film is strongly hinted at rather than explicitly seen, and it actually adds to the savagery of the proceedings. When your mind is already picturing that someone is ruthlessly stabbing another person, sometimes the relentless thud-jabs and squishes beyond the camera lens are more than enough to finish painting the disturbing portrait. This isn’t torture porn, but it is captive violence.
What lingered with me after the film ended was the question of why what happened needed to happen. Was this class warfare? A couple of psychotic bastards just having a good time? Patrick and Darren seem to have some philosophical or ideological reasoning behind their sudden violent turn, giving the “cool kids” a reality check from Hell, but maybe that’s just a smokescreen. Or maybe that’s just optimism on my part, hoping that there could be a logic, no matter how unhinged or flawed, to the situation.
At the same time, since I never really liked very many of the people onscreen (if any of them), I only empathized with their plight because I’m human and so are they. Beyond that, I really could care less what their fate winds up being, which makes it hard to get too invested in the overall film. Then again, maybe a safe distance is the best policy here.
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