Final Girl: Beth (Hostel II)

Hostell II a film by Eli Roth

Image Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Hostelpart2finalposter.jpg  This image being used under "fair use" rationale.
Image Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Hostelpart2finalposter.jpg This image being used under "fair use" rationale.

Final Girl: Beth

Beth is a typical Final Girl in Eli Roth's sequel to the movie Hostel. Now, the sequel, Hostel II doesn't veer very far away from the original film, but with Paxton out of the picture in the scenarios here, a new Final Girl is needed by Roth and Tarantino (executive director).

Hostel II is set in the same area, a sort of generic place in Slovakia, Europe - and in this film, someone is coaxing American travellers to a torture warehouse facility to realize their end in gruesome ways...only this time, the victims are primarily young and beautiful women. Beth and friends fall into the hands of covert manipulator/scouts who lure travellers to the warehouse for a significant price.

The victims are essentially "auctioned" off to the highest killer/bidder, and Beth, along with her two American friends, Whitney and Lorna, are "purchased" quickly on this deadly, secret market.

Beth shows her Final Girl qualities very early on and is a typical Final Girl with few surprises or twists. The Tarantino/Roth film-maker combination rely on twists in the mechanics of death and gore in this film, rather than character/trope twists, so the film-makers leave well enough alone, the important and effective archetype-character conventions here. This is a good thing in a "gore" film because really - truly - the audience has enough discomfort to deal with in viewing the grisly scenes rather than to be dealing with examining metaphorical qualities of characters. Perhaps the only comforting thing involved with viewing this movie is the fact that once viewers identify that Beth is the Final Girl, she performs exactly as she should and doesn't mess with viewers' headspace!

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Plot in 50 Words or Less

Enter victims with final girl - manipulation - killing, loss of final girl's friends - final girl resourcefulness - more killing - final girl turns tables - more killing - more final girl resourcefulness - more killing - tons of blood and gore - final girl exits of her own accord.

Alright - just kidding. It's not quite that simple. There is a lot more GORE needed above, actually.

In the original, first film, Hostel, transients (primarily, American backpackers) are being scooped up into a murderous auction process in a backward, isolated region of Slovakia, Europe. The purchasers also buy the right to torture the victim bought by auction. The company running this heinous auction business is called "Elite Hunting," and those who become involved with this company all sign into a very stringent and particular contract with Elite Hunting. This includes a mark that Elite Hunting places on them for life - a particular tattoo goes on the body of all killers who participate and no person who enters into the agreement is permitted to leave the warehouse without performing 'a kill.' This last requirement comes into focus more prominently in Hostel II than in the first movie.

Hostel II begins with Beth and friends, Whitney and Lorna, who are vacationing in Europe together during a break from art College or University studies. The peers have actually been studying art in a program in Rome, Italy - but decide to see other parts of Europe as a break from studies. Unfortunately, the decide to visit an area in Slovakia that is isolated and, well, full of Elite Hunting psycho killers. The girls' bad luck doesn't actually start with their decision and location they select. There is actually an Elite Hunting scout who is covertly placed in Rome, within the elite education circles, as the nude model the girls are sketching/painting. This scout actually turns the girls toward Slovakia and death - by inviting them on a spa retreat - as soon as she overhears their plans for taking a little break from studies.

Axelle, the covert scout, travels with the girls to an isolated village in Slovakia. When they check into lodging at the local Hostel, their passport photos and information are secretly and immediately uploaded to the Elite Hunting database and before they even settle into their room, their pictures and details have entered the bidding processes of the Elite Hunting human auction.

Axelle and the girls partake of the local "Harvest Festival" on the first night of their arrival to the Hostel and the (unnamed) village in Slovakia. This is when the killing begins and is also when our Final Girl shows her stuff!

Final Girl, Beth...in usual final girl style - is very careful about who she talks to (final girl caution) and about her intake of alcoholic beverages (final girl purity). She does ingest a little cider but (final girl nurturing) warns her friends not to get too carried away with the cider. She also dumps a glass of cider or beer on the ground - well, actually onto someone's feet because he is standing too close to her - which shows off Beth's "final girl purity" some more.

Final Girl, Beth, inadvertently seals her "Final Girl" status when she apologizes to the man who ended up wearing her beverage. This is the moment when "History" begins for the final girl and the threat...for the man who ended up with beverage on his feet had just won a bid of a certain type earlier in the day. "History between the final girl and her stalker" is solidified when the threat/man, in a regular act of proper convention, runs to get Beth another drink. Now here, Beth must accept the drink or else she'll offend the man, even though she has CLEARLY decided that, for her, drinking is not right. She shares very brief, polite conversation and sips her drink when the man returns with drinks, and her sips mark a very symbolic point of history between her and the man who is in the killer role.

Lorna is first to go. She's a totally 'square' persona but she ends up having too much to drink. The alcohol clouds her decision-making (Yo! our Final Girl warned you, Lorna tsk-tsk!) and she allows herself to be led away from the other girls, as well as away from the general public area where the festival is going on...

As I viewed this movie, I wanted to yell: "By the way, Lorna...you transgressed beyond two of our final girl's warnings...she also TOLD YOU not to go far away! Tsk-tsk! I now wipe my hands of you - nobody can help you now."

So Lorna becomes the victim of a person known as 'Mrs. Bathory' in the script. Mrs. Bathory, as her name indicates, is all about bathing in blood...which turns out to be Lorna's blood.

Gross...I couldn't bring myself to watch the full scene, to tell you the truth - and I suggest to anyone who isn't into such gore - just peek out a little bit (like I do OFTEN!) between your fingers as you cover your eyes with your hands.

It appears that I'll give all the spoilers of this film away if I continue to outline all the Final Girl moments in as detailed a way as I have thus far.

Trust me - our Final Girl, Beth - is a true and conventional Final Girl right up to the end...with a little twist at the end that SOME movie enthusiasts will say is a twist that makes our Final Girl - finally - non-conventional.

I do not agree.

Beth is forced to make a decision near the end of the movie. I say the decision/twist makes her a conventional final girl - willing to live with tough decisions and actions she takes. Some people from other schools of thought will say that the decision made and action taken by Beth actually VIOLATES the "purity" convention of a final girl.

Here's how I found a site so I could watch Hostel II for free online:

ovguide.com

I typed the movie name into ovguide.com and turned up links where the movie is located for free viewing online.

TheCritics.tv - Andrews Review of Hostel II (Andrew Recommends It - Positive Review)

Particulars:

Written and Directed by Eli Roth

Genre: Horror, Thriller

Awards and Nominations: 4 nominations

  • nomination at 2008 Golden Trailer Awards "Best Thriller TV Spot" (For "Big Drill")
  • nomination at 2007 Teen Choice Awards "Choice Movie: Horror/Thriller"
  • 2008 2 Razzie Award Nominations: 1 for "Worst Excuse For a Horror Movie," 1 for "Worst Prequel or Sequel"

Cast (Character, then actor/actress):

  • Beth - Lauren German
  • Stuart - Roger Bart
  • Lorna - Heather Matarazzo
  • Whitney - Bijou Phillips
  • Todd - Richard Burgi
  • Axelle - Vera Jordanova
  • Paxton - Jay Hernandez
  • Stephanie - Jordan Ladd
  • Sasha - Milan Knazko
  • Art Class Professor - Edwige Fenech
  • Miroslav - Stanislav Ianevski
  • Bubblegum Gang Leader - Patrik Zigo
  • Inya - Zuzana Geislerov√°
  • Big Guard - Ivan Furak
  • Mrs. Bathory - Monika Malacova

Released in Canada June 8, 2007.

Watch this You Tube video with some clips from the movie and a few words from Eli Roth and some of the cast:

HOSTEL CREATOR ELI ROTH INFLICTS MORE TORTURE


Hub Challenge Hub #7

This lens is part of a March 2010 Hub Challenge I'm doing. I started March 1 and have a personal goal to publish at least 60 hubs over the month of March.

To check out how I'm doing, see my challenge hub, link below:

Mythbuster Hub Challenges

This hub is part of a series on "Final Girls" and the series will contain no less than 7 Final Girl personalities once my Hub Challenge goal is realized.

Hostel II Movie Clip - The Tool Checkout Room

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Comments 12 comments

MrMidNight 6 years ago

Ahh, yes the hostel part 1 and 2 films were both entertaining and i find your analysis on these films well thought out, good read, good hub indeed.


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Thanks for your critique, MrMidNight. Did you find a preference for either Final Girl/Guy character between the movies? Paxton or Beth?


Beth100 profile image

Beth100 6 years ago from Canada

I'm not one who likes to watch these types of movies, but "Beth", well, caught my attention. Then, as I read, you really caught my attention! I more than likely won't watch this (can't handle gore lol ) but great review!


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Hey Beth100, thx for stopping by. I found this FINAL GIRL very interesting - the rest of the gore in the movie, not so much. If gore bothers you, this isn't a great show for you to watch - that's for sure. I sort of watched many parts of this movie with my face half covered by my hands, just peeking out every 10 seconds or so while I listened to crunches, squishes and gross sounds supposedly representing the sounds of bodies being abused - until these sound effects abated for certain scenes. If you do decide to watch this film - don't bother making popcorn or anything - you won't feel like doing any snacking at all lol


lxxy profile image

lxxy 6 years ago from Beneath, Between, Beyond

Interesting line of articles. I personally loved both movies, and I think they scare audiences so much because there's little doubt this sort of business exists somewhere in the world.

I bought the sequel not knowing what to expect, but it actually turned out to be my favorite of the two because of how well the characters and system is fleshed out.

I never finished watching it--and I don't think the girl in the movie is the sole survivor, but you may appreciate the 1998 classic "If I Die before I Wake," which involves a suburban family being held hostage and robbed. It's truly suspenseful, and even rather believable. Great acting.

Speaking of sole survivor, I love that song:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6rzwtsd1eIQ


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

lxxy, I appreciate your evaluation of the movies and characters presented here - as well as the suggestion of a 1998 movie - AND - the youtube link! I am listening to the "Sole Survivor" song right now...I like it! I'll look for the movie you suggested and view it this weekend if I can find it.


lxxy profile image

lxxy 6 years ago from Beneath, Between, Beyond

I have the movie queued in my netflix. I saw it on free OnDemand awhile back. I love OnDemand stuff...awesome.

And I highly recommend Polkadot Cadaver...they're...just, weird. And morbid. But somehow beautiful.


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Well, hopefully, you'll be able to pick out more of Beth's "final girl" good points when you next view the movie, lxxy. I'm checking out Polkadot Cadaver on youtube now, as per your recommendations... you're right - morbid, but also clever... have you got a fave tune from this group?


MrMidNight 6 years ago

A preference for these final survivors hhmmmmmmm? Well the final guy would have lived, if he didn't get back with his girlfriend who of course is gonna chat about going away to a secluded, expensive mansion in who knows where, his survival instincts wasn't bad until he got to comfortable and at the end showed poor judgement, in other words that's how you lose your head. Now the final girl, well she's rich, thus having more resources and even joined their secret slaughtery, which makes her the best benefactor as a final survivor.


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

You've mentioned the twist that almost made final girl, Beth, a failure as a final girl, MrMidNight... however, it's all about the CONTEXT in this film, isn't it? The context in which Beth is in and is forced to make decisions in make her choices "acceptable" in a very twisted way.

I agree, too, that the final guy would have lived if he'd have kept up his "final girl vigilance" for at least a tad bit longer.


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palma@mchsi 6 years ago from Sleepy Eye, MN.

I enjoyed this ride. Are there any people who like to read about history? I write about "Potted History."

Mary Ann


mythbuster profile image

mythbuster 6 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide Author

Hey Mary Ann. Thanks for stopping by and for your comment. What is your definition of "Potted History."?

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