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The Hunt (2013)

tomatometer

93

Average Rating: 7.9/10
Reviews Counted: 122
Fresh: 114 | Rotten: 8

Gripping, smartly written, and anchored by a strong performance from Mads Mikkelsen, The Hunt asks difficult questions -- and has the courage to face the answers head on.

92

Average Rating: 8.1/10
Critic Reviews: 25
Fresh: 23 | Rotten: 2

Gripping, smartly written, and anchored by a strong performance from Mads Mikkelsen, The Hunt asks difficult questions -- and has the courage to face the answers head on.

audience

93

liked it
Average Rating: 4.3/5
User Ratings: 16,661

My Rating

Movie Info

Mads Mikkelsen (NBC's Hannibal, A ROYAL AFFAIR, CASINO ROYALE) won the Best Actor Award at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival for his penetrating portrayal of Lucas, a former school teacher who has been forced to start over having overcome a tough divorce and the loss of his job. Just as things are starting to go his way, his life is shattered when an untruthful remark throws his small community into a collective state of hysteria. As the lie spreads, Lucas is forced to fight a lonely fight for his

R,

Drama

Thomas Vinterberg, Tobias Lindholm

Dec 10, 2013

$0.6M

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All Critics (122) | Top Critics (25) | Fresh (114) | Rotten (8) | DVD (1)

You leave The Hunt unsettled in the best sense. Its images and implications are likely to stay in your head a long time.

December 16, 2013 Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The Hunt's inexorability feels derived more from thematic or ideological concerns than any organic necessity.

December 16, 2013 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Thomas Vinterberg's The Hunt conveys the sinister swirl of persecution more vividly than any film I can remember.

August 29, 2013 Full Review Source: Dallas Morning News
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Through it all, we see an idyllic-looking community, where glorious fall colors fade into twinkling December snow - a pretty frame for a terrifying story of a modern-day witch hunt.

August 16, 2013 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's hard to watch. It should be seen.

August 15, 2013 Full Review Source: Detroit News
Detroit News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Vinterberg orchestrates the material impressively, increasing tension little by little until it becomes overwhelming.

August 1, 2013 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The Hunt is an extremely effective, skilfully put together psychological thriller, whose only tools are human character traits.

March 13, 2014 Full Review Source: Movie Mezzanine
Movie Mezzanine

Engrossing, profoundly disturbing psychological drama - with a devastating conclusion.

February 12, 2014 Full Review Source: SSG Syndicate
SSG Syndicate

A profoundly important subject--the "repressed memories" witch-hunts--dramatized superbly with a top-notch cast. Deserves not only best foreign picture of the year award, but best picture period.

January 31, 2014 Full Review Source: rec.arts.movies.reviews
rec.arts.movies.reviews

Though its theme is hardly a happy subject, this thought-provoking Danish drama on the false accusation of child abuse is nonetheless extra-highly recommended

January 3, 2014 Full Review Source: SheKnows Network
SheKnows Network

A sublime performance from Mads Mikkelsen is just one facet of a brilliant and unnerving drama that provides brutal, thought-provoking answers to the tough questions it asks.

December 28, 2013 Full Review Source: We Got This Covered
We Got This Covered

It's a maddening, strangely riveting cinematic experience to follow a man wrongly accused of a crime that could stain his name forever ... but there's still something one-note about this near-tragedy. The script, too, seems programmatic.

December 27, 2013 Full Review Source: Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)

The acting on all fronts is outstanding, with Mikkelsen holding the centre magnificently as the wronged teacher, his life contaminated by the slow-acting poison of rumour.

December 16, 2013 Full Review Source: Independent
Independent

This is not a new story. However it's been handled superbly by Vinterberg working with co-screenwriter Tobias Lindholm.

December 16, 2013 Full Review Source: At the Movies (Australia)
At the Movies (Australia)

The Hunt starts off with great promise before it fails.

December 13, 2013 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

Mikkelsen acts as a superb anchor, making these two hours go by somewhat rapidly. In short, he's the main reason to give this devastating analysis of truth a whirl.

December 9, 2013 Full Review Source: Examiner.com
Examiner.com

The injustice story might be upsetting but it tells us nothing we don't already know about the horrors from a rush to judgment that turns out wrong.

December 5, 2013 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Grimly one-note and miserabilist.

November 22, 2013 Full Review Source: Antagony & Ecstasy
Antagony & Ecstasy

A nursery school student, angry at her teacher, says something stupid which leads to a witch hunt in a small Danish town. Tension builds inexorably in this intense drama about a teacher accused of sexual misconduct.

November 19, 2013 Full Review Source: Laramie Movie Scope
Laramie Movie Scope

This is a serious treatment of what it is to be [accused of a sex crime], and it is much more disturbing than anything in a Hitchcock thriller.

November 17, 2013 Full Review Source: Mark Leeper's Reviews
Mark Leeper's Reviews

Vinterberg uses a sharp cinematic knife to cut to the core of the matter: that the human heart can never be entirely civilized and, ultimately, each man is alone with his fate.

October 31, 2013 Full Review Source: Yahoo! Movies
Yahoo! Movies

Thomas Vinterberg ("The Celebration") creates a modern-day "Crucible," a frighteningly plausible examination of how suspicion can spread through otherwise decent people.

September 30, 2013 Full Review Source: Madison Movie
Madison Movie

Credibly generates suspense and maintains interest, even if one wonders why the filmmakers felt compelled to pursue this particular subject matter for their tale of a wronged man.

September 20, 2013 Full Review Source: Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)

... a movie of uncommon power about the evil that well-meaning people commit when given license by what they perceive as atrocity.

September 3, 2013 Full Review Source: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Audience Reviews for The Hunt

A phenomenal, unforgettable little film about a kind, loving man (Mads Mikkelsen) who is wrongly accused of pedophilia by one of his students who is in Kindergarten, and how the community goes after him in a mean, violent fashion. Mikklesen, in the performance of the year and the turn of his career, is lights-out in a role that requires a lot from him, namely just convincing the audience that he can pull this character off after playing psychopaths for so many years. He carries the film, and the subject matter is heartbreaking, realistically portrayed, and ultimately very sad. The way the film ends is surprising and fitting given the title of the movie, and Mikkelsen's confused, shaken glare will not leave you quickly. This is a near-masterpiece and one of the finest movies from 2013.
February 13, 2014
Dan Schultz

Super Reviewer

In the year 2000 a horrible little British tabloid called The News of the World released a list (with pictures) of convicted paedophiles who had failed to sign on the sex offenders register. It is fair to say many of the accompanying photos were not of the greatest quality and lots of innocent people who looked vaguely like them got attacked in the streets. A Doctor who lived locally to me had a brick thrown through the window of his surgery because it had the word Pediatrician on the entrance. People are ignorant. The not so famous as they should be hip-hop duo Dan le Sac vs. Scroobius Pip (check them out) wrote a song called 'Thou shall always kill' that includes the great line "Thou shalt not think any male over the age of 30 that plays with a child that is not their own is a paedophile. Some people are just nice." I agree wholeheartedly. Although I generally don't play with kids that don't belong to me unless I know them, but you catch my drift. Thomas Vinterberg's The Hunt is a frustratingly real film about peoples ignorance, knee-jerk reactions and dangerous gossip. It's frightening to think that this kind of thing happens all the time. It is played out perfectly, well handled and tasteful. Thomas Vinterberg doesn't make many films but when he does they pull no punches. Maybe now Mads Mikkelsen will also get the credit that is well over due. One of the best films of 2013 in my opinion.
February 11, 2014
SirPant

Super Reviewer

Lucas (Mads Mikkelsen) is a mild-mannered kindergarten teacher residing in a small Danish community. Divorced, and struggling to maintain a relationship with his son due to his overbearing ex-wife, Lucas seeks solace in his close-knit group of friends and playful, fatherly interaction with his school children. Things look to be on the up and up when Nadja, a coworker who initiates a relationship, moves in as his girlfriend, but soon an innocent little lie from a young pupil threatens not only Lucas' reputation. but his dignity and the very life he has established for himself.

Thomas Vinterberg's "The Hunt" is simply a horrifying study of human nature; sadly it rings true. Child abuse is arguably the most difficult subject matter to center a film on, but Vinterberg and co-writer Tobias Lindholm come to a creative decision that makes the film even more thought provoking and unbearably gripping; we know Lucas is innocent from the very beginning.

There is no vague morality. As mass hysteria and irrationality spread over Lucas' supposed actions, we the audience are left more or less alone in his defense. The film makes the claim that some people take joy in the pain of others and even worse there are those that let these individuals dictate where the truths lies; not because there is proof but because it's convenient! Startlingly we recognize people just like this.

"The Hunt" is a scathing dissection of a society highly susceptible and even attracted to "witch hunts;" both media-induced or otherwise; boldly asking it's audience to consider which side of Lucas' plight they'd find themselves on in a real-world instance. The result is maddening, chilling and unforgettable.

Starring Mads Mikkelsen, in one of recent cinema's great performances and movies.
February 10, 2014
YLOWBSTARDreturns

Super Reviewer

The Hunt is an almost masterful exercise in provoking frustration and outrage from the audience (in the best way possible), though at times it creeps over the edges of believability. Nonetheless, it is destined to be a Danish classic, especially due to the tremendous performance by Mads Mikkelsen, who never wavers in his ability to get seemingly endless sympathy out of viewers.
January 25, 2014
Sam Barnett

Super Reviewer

    1. Theo: The world is full of nastiness, but if we stand by each other it would be ousted.
    – Submitted by Mohamed K (3 months ago)
View all quotes (1)

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Foreign Titles

  • Die Jagd (DE)
  • The Hunt (UK)
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