By Amy Ryan
January 06, 2006 at 08:32 PM EST

The challenge for Hostel reviewers: how to write a headline for a gruesome splatterfest about an inn where captive American tourists are tortured? Sure, you can pun on the word hostile, as many writers did, though that’s a little obvious. Others wisely chose not to pun at all, while a few papers actually tried hard to be clever. (Best headline by far belongs to the New York Post, as you’ll see below.) Here’s a sample of headlines for you to, um, check out.

Commence ‘Hostilities’:
The Buffalo News: A hostile ‘Hostel’
Baltimore Sun: A European vacation with ‘Hostel’ intentions
Edmonton Sun: ‘Hostel’ intent
Washington (D.C.) Examiner: ‘Hostel’ environment
Newark Star-Ledger: Bloody ‘Hostel’ breeds hostility

Reality ‘Check’:
Winnipeg Free Press: Check into this grisly ‘Hostel’ if you have a strong stomach
Denver Post: Don’t bother checking in

‘Torture’ chamber:
Salem (Ore.) Statesman Journal: ‘Hostel’: Are you ready for some torture?
San Jose Mercury News: Bloody ‘Hostel’ is torturous gorefest
Louisville Courier-Journal: Brutal ‘Hostel’ is torture to watch
Albany (N.Y.) Times Union: ‘Hostel’ takes its audience on a disturbing journey of torture

Both ‘sick’ and ‘fun’:
Tallahassee Democrat: ‘Hostel’ delivers a nightmare of sick, sadistic fun
Los Angeles Daily News: ‘Hostel’ delivers on good, sick fun
Hartford (Conn.) Courant: Horror in ‘Hostel’ So Good, It’s Disturbing

We actually put a little thought into this:
Kansas City Star: ‘Hostel’ la vista
Sioux Falls (S.D.) Argus Leader: ‘Hostel’ puts the ‘gross’ in engrossing horror
New York Times: We Hope You Enjoy Your Stay. Gore Is Served in the Cellar.
New York Post: Doom Service

addCredit(“Hostel: Rico Torres”)

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