In 2003, L.T. (Tommy Lee Jones) is cozy in his retirement in his cabin in the woods in Oregon. He used to be in the special forces, where his assignment was to train soldiers to kill in hand-to-hand combat. When someone brutally slaughters four deer hunters, the FBI calls on L.T. to help them find and apprehend a murderer. They suspect a rogue special forces soldier.
Sure enough, Aaron (Benicio Del Toro) is one of L.T.’s trainees, one of the best there is, and mentally damaged beyond hope by terrible trauma he was exposed to during the conflict in Kosovo.
When L.T. comes after Aaron, he is unarmed, and it is not clear what he was thinking. Two trained killers are at each other’s throats for the duration of the movie.
This is Rambo, First Blood, part two, only much less refined. Two men, trainee and mentor, fight to the death with — it had to be that way — knives they made from scratch in the woods. L.T. fashions a knife from rock splinters. Aaron forges a knife from scrap steel he finds at a ruined embankment. As the two go at each other, we are subjected to completely unrealistic blood scenes. The human body only has about six quarts of blood. It seems like both fighters spill more than that in each of their fights, and they somehow keep walking away without bandages each time.
The Hunted has been around. It was released in 2003, and you have probably seen it flipping through the channels more than once over the years.
If you want to watch a movie about a damaged special forces soldier going berserk, watch Rambo, First Blood instead. It’s a much better movie.