Hello, Destroyer

Director: Kevan Funk
Cast: Jared Abrahamson, Sara Canning, Kurt Max Runte, Ian Tracey
Showtime: April 23, 2017 9:45 AM
Runtime: 110 minutes
Language: English
Rating: 14A

Vancouver Critics Circle: Best Canadian Film, Best Director of a Canadian Film,
Best Actor in a Canadian Film (Jared Abrahamson), Best Supporting Actor in a
Canadian Film (Kurt Max Runte), Best British Columbia Film. Two other wins, six
other nominations.

For those who may have seen Youngblood or Slap Shot—Hello, Destroyer isn’t like those, not by a long shot. Canadian director Kevan Funk’s first feature film is a moody look at the side of sport nobody likes to talk about.

A rookie hockey player for the Prince George Warriors, Tyson Burr (Jared Abrahamson) is taught in an almost boot-camp manner how to be a good teammate and a relentless warrior. However, when he severely injures an opposing player with his overaggressive play, he’s ruthlessly abandoned by his team. He goes home and finds work in a slaughterhouse, a metaphor for the meat-on-the-hoof harshness of how athletes can be treated. More’s the pity, as he is otherwise a soft-spoken, nice enough fellow

The film has the feel of a documentary, with sparse, seemingly semi-scripted dialogue creating an almost unsettling intimacy. Jared Abrahamson is very effective as the inarticulate and introverted mucker who struggles to express his frustrations. When he’s discarded by his team and everyone else, he broods and pulls his hoodie low – not as a tough guy, but a shy, lonely and vulnerable one.

This isn’t a traditional hockey film. In a sense, it’s not a hockey film at all. Hello Destroyer shoots for more: A story of alienation and of youth rudely interrupted and lost in the machine.

 

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