Part of what makes the Hostel franchise so unsettling, aside from the gore and premise, is simply how dark these films are. Even happy endings aren’t really happy endings and are filled with the feeling that nothing will really go well. Sure, Paxton’s murder at the start of Hostel: Part II plays a part here, but there’s already a scene in Hostel that shatters the idea of hope: Cana’s suicide.
After escaping from an elite hunting club, Cana (Jennifer Lim) and Paxton make their way to the train station, carefully hiding from the thugs chasing them. It seems that they can just get out of here and come home alive. But then Cana catches a glimpse of her reflection in the empty sign. She stops and looks at her disfigured face. Lim’s performance creates a moment that lasts surprisingly long as we can see Kana contemplating how she can move forward in life with that constant reminder of the horror she felt on her face. Paxton calls to her, but she begins to slowly walk towards the tracks, along which the speeding train is moving. walks slowly towards the tracks before jumping in front of the train, which splatters her body on impact.
The blood is gruesome, sure, but more than that, the hopelessness of Cana’s suicide makes this one of the most disturbing scenes in the franchise.
If you or someone you know has suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Helpline by dialing 988 or 1-800-273-TALK (8255).