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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Oct 31, 2021



‘RUN HIDE FIGHT’ is an action-thriller set in a school shooting, a ghastly phenomenon that has become so rampant in America that we’re no longer surprised someone would make a commercial movie about it and turn it into a “Die Hard” kind of film with a female 17-year old high school senior student taking on the role of Bruce Willis.

Zoe Hull (Isabel May) is a high school senior who is still mourning from the death of her mother from the big C. 

She is in trauma but won’t talk about it and has a strained relationship with her dad (Thomas Jane), with whom she goes on hunting trips for deer in the mountains, establishing to us that she’s tough and trained in the right skills for survival. 

While going to school, she and her friend Lewis (Olly Sholotan), see their classmate Chris (Britton Sear) planting something on a grassy land. 

It turns out to be a bomb and several other bombs were planted around town to distract firemen and law enforcers as Chris and other students have planned to attack their school. 

Their leader is Tristan (Eli Brown) and two other members are Kip (Cyrus Arnold) and Anna (Catherine Davis) who is Chris’ sister. 

They crash their van into the school’s canteen. They are heavily armed and start shooting students as soon they get off their vehicle. 

Zoe is fortunately in the toilet when the hostage situation starts. She goes out carefully and could just walk away safely, but she chooses to stay to warn other students, help them get away and save those trapped inside.

The school authorities try to talk to the shooters but Tristan shoots the school’s principal to death. The school’s front office then calls for a lockdown. 

The cops finally arrive but the first policeman who comes to respond is quickly killed. 

Tristan asks Anna to see how much damage they have wrought so far, but Anna encounters Zoe instead and the resourceful Zoe succeeds in subduing her and killing her. 

Tristan asks the students in the canteen to take live videos of him talking to the cops and showing it on social media. 

Press people and TV crews soon arrive and this delights Tristan even more, obviously enjoying and basking in his newfound notoriety.

When Anna does not return, Tristan tells Kip to look for her and Kip also encounters Zoe, who overpowers him, gets his weapon and handcuffs him. 

He confesses to Zoe that he joined Tristan to get revenge for all the bullying that he’s been getting in school. Zoe talks sense into him, saying he has killed innocent students who never bullied him.

The situation gets even worse and Tristan threatens to kill a student every five minutes. Zoe’s dad sees the news on TV and goes to the school to help his daughter. 

Of course, we won’t reveal to you how the crisis situation is resolved. Suffice it to say, that it has a satisfying conclusion where the thinly drawn bad guys surely deserve the punishment they deserve.

The movie works as an action thriller about a female student who uses her wits and survival skills to protect herself and help save other people in a school shooting. 

Isabel May navigates the heroic role well and the narrative is a bit stylized as the spirit of her dead mother (Radha Mitchell) keeps appearing to her all throughout the film to cheer her up. 

It’s her mom who delivers the film’s title “Run Hide Fight”. This is the standard advice given to students in the U.S. where 2,000 school shootings have been recorded so far. 

Run: Evacuate if possible. Hide: Hide silently in a safe place. Fight: Take action to disrupt the shooter.

The film is blatantly commercial and we’re not surprised that some folks criticize it for exploiting the very serious and tragic nihilistic phenomenon of school shootings. 

Well, it’s not the film’s intention to grapple with the social, political and philosophical perspectives of school shootings. 

This is more of just an average genre thriller flick and if you want an in-depth serious film that explores the psychological and emotional background of shooters and such, then you can watch the various documentaries about the Columbine, Parkland and other school shootings now available on youtube. 

The intention of Director Kyle Rankin in this movie is obviously to just make a compelling and watchable genre entry without taking it too seriously. And he succeeds in doing just that.