Hardcore Henry looks fucking ridiculous – but in the best possible way. Watch the trailer below – ahead of the film’s April cinema release – and wonder how anyone managed to make a feature length effort from such an insane concept.
Bizarrely, the trailer isn’t some kind of YouTube prank for a film we’ll never see. Hardcore Henry is an honest to God film, all shot from the first person perspective of a mute, amnesiac cyborg who was brought back from the dead by his wife.
Here’s the official synopsis:
You remember nothing. Mainly because you’ve just been brought back from the dead by your wife (Haley Bennett). She tells you that your name is Henry. Five minutes later, you are being shot at, your wife has been kidnapped, and you should probably go get her back. Who’s got her? His name’s Akan (Danila Kozlovsky); he’s a powerful warlord with an army of mercenaries, and a plan for world domination. You’re also in an unfamiliar city of Moscow, and everyone wants you dead. Everyone except for a mysterious British fellow called Jimmy (Sharlto Copley). He may be on your side, but you aren’t sure. If you can survive the insanity, and solve the mystery, you might just discover your purpose and the truth behind your identity. Good luck, Henry. You’re likely going to need it…
This work of art comes from director Ilya Naishuller, who made a first-person action short in 2013. The success of that led to what you see today.
The festival reviews of Hardcore Henry have (predictably) been mixed. Some saw it as knowingly ridiculous, just a bit of fun with some fantastically over the top set pieces. Others argued it was a shallow sack of shit that panders to the Call of Duty playing masses.
I have to say, the trailer was thoroughly entertaining – but I’m really not sure the FPS gimmick could sustain around 90 minutes of entertainment.
Clearly there’s an audience for it though, since it raised around £173, 130 ($250,000) on IndieGoGo back in December 2014.
Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.