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'The Hunt' takes controversial aim at our ridiculous political divide

The controversial film “The Hunt” picks its political side clearly and quickly, with enough middle fingers for every ideological extreme.

The satirical horror thriller (★★★ out of four; rated R; in theaters nationwide Friday) has taken a long, winding and tumultuous road to release and kicked up some dust along the way. Almost from the start, “The Hunt” has been contentious because of its subject matter: A group of conservative-leaning “deplorables” (including Emma Roberts, Justin Hartley and Ethan Suplee) are captured and hunted for sport by a cabal of liberal Americans fronted by a mysterious leader (Hilary Swank).

The film was shelved last August following mass shootings in Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas, as well as criticism from President Donald Trump, and now is back with a snazzy new marketing slogan: “The most talked about movie of the year is one that no one’s actually seen.”

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Justin Hartley (left) and Emma Roberts star as members of the hunted who weapon up  in a clearing in

A little over the top? For sure, though subtlety doesn’t exist at all with “The Hunt.” With several months since the initial fracas, hardliners of every political stripe have moved on to many other situations that have arisen to drive the country further apart (for example, a presidential impeachment), though feathers shall be ruffled again by the politically charged narrative and cartoonish ultra-violence.

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