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Hills Have Eyes, The, Jupiter (James Whitworth)

Site Rating: 60%
(ratings: 2)
Writeup Rating: 87%
(ratings: 3)
Film: Hills Have Eyes, The (1977)
Deceased Character: Jupiter (James Whitworth)
Archetype: Baddy (Major)
Killed by: Bobby Carter (Robert Houston)
Killed with: Gun

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'Death Trap' icon 'Unique' icon 'Shot' icon 'Hacked' icon
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Written by Old Bluffer 29th Jul 2007

Papa Jupe is the patriarch of his small clan of wild, cannabalistic mutants. Recent events have seen him kill his own father and terrorize the Carter family - but at the cost of at least one of his sons. Furious at this loss, he is more than ready to take out his anger on the two teenagers, Bobby and Brenda Carter.

Now out of the two teenagers, my sympathies lie with Brenda, as she has suffered the trauma of being raped by Mars, but still shows a bit of competence in the plan to defend their camper van. Bobby, as we've previously seen from the radio debacle, is fairly useless. (It doesn't help that the actor who plays him is like a young Mark Hamill, but with even less acting ability).

Anyway, between the two of them, they have concocted a convoluted death trap utilising all the meagre resources available to them. These resources being: a car with a broken axle, a coil of wire, a camper van with a working gas supply and the stiff corpse of their murdered mother. Yes, you read the last item correctly - they actually tie old Ethel Carter to a chair some distance from the camper van as "bait". Papa Jupe falls for it and is drawn to the grisly decoy (presumably more by curiousity than anything else, although maybe he felt peckish for some old woman).

The two youngsters have coiled a lassoo of the wire around the area next to their dead mum, and connected the other end to the working axle of the car, and all they need to do is start the engine to reel in their prey. This they eventually do, although Bobby makes a typical hash of it for several attempts.

Papa Jupe is well and truly caught now, and is being dragged along the rocky earth at a goodly rate of knots, which doesn't improve his already mutilated appearance. Before he can reach the car and be ground into mince though, the cable snaps, and (somewhat redundantly) the engine runs out of fuel too.

Papa Jupe soon frees himself of the lassoo, and does lots of generic angry growling "Arghghgghgh!!!" etc etc. Now Bobby has a gun with two bullets in and could easily take aim at the enraged mutant and blow him away at this point, but instead he flees into the camper van with his sister to try the weakest "Plan B" I've seen in quite some time. Basically he opens the valves to all the gas cannisters in the kitchen and then jumps out of the back window.

The reason why this plan is so weak (apart from the fact he could have just shot the guy) is that firstly the gas stinks of... gas, and secondly, he opens the cannisters so much that the resulting crescendo is like a large crowd of adders at a very bad play.

Needless to say, Jupiter isn't fooled, and even turns the trap around by setting it off himself from a safe distance away. He then jumps on the two kids after they finish celebrating like morons and go to look for his exploded body.

The resulting scuffle with Bobby doesn't really qualify as a fight, as Jupiter easily picks him up and slams him to the ground. Brenda is made of sterner stuf though, and picks up the handaxe to chop him in the back, repeatedly, until he retreats. This allows Bobby to steal the kill by (finally) shooting him with his last two bullets.

Editor Note: I've flagged this death as "Unique", as a reminder in case we ever feel the need for a "dragged" category :).

Also, whilst not a bad death, I think Papa Jupe could have shown a bit more character in his final moments so I've marked it down a bit accordingly. Previously he'd been shown as quite a powerful, vengeful figure, but in this scene he's reduced to a generic neanderthal.

4 categories : Death Trap, Unique, Shot, Hacked

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Other Death Reviews for Hills Have Eyes, The (1977)

Fred (John Steadman)
Big Bob Carter (Russ Grieve)
Mercury (Peter Locke)
Pluto (Michael Berryman)
Jupiter (James Whitworth)
Mars (Lance Gordon)

Last Updated: 1st Jun 2008
Number of views for this review since 30th May 2008: 4930
This review has 2 comments. Reply to the comments
Comment 1 by 'Mr. Briggs Inc.' (reply to this comment)
You could have tagged it "Unsatisfying"
Comment 2 by 'old bluffer' (reply to this comment)
It wasn't that bad. I didn't feel cheated but my criticism is still valid I think.