Rutger Hauer, my father's favorite actor, had a birthday yesterday. To celebrate, let's highlight his best horror roles.
The Hitcher (1986) - This is probably Rutger's most well-known/breakout role. Synopsis, from IMDB: A young man who escaped the clutches of a murderous hitch-hiker is subsequently stalked, framed for the hitcher's crimes, and has his life made into hell by the same man he escaped. Our icon plays the titular character. The creepiness of the hitchhiker is how cool he is; he never gets upset, never seems strained, even when holding a knife to his victim's eye or threatening to draw-and-quarter his girlfriend.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992) - When you make a '90's movie about a cheerleader who finds out she is really the next in a long line of vampire killers, you'd better make her nemesis great. So, of course, you call in Rutger.
'Salem's Lot (TV, 2004) - This remake of the 1979 classic miniseries tries to update Stephen King's masterpiece, and fails miserably. But it has Donald Sutherland and Hauer as head vampire Barlow and his assistant Straker so it can't be all bad, can it? Yes, it can, except for this duo, and their magnificence can't save this mistakenly made miniseries. Watch the original.
Hobo with a Shotgun (2011) - The latest in the fantastic line of grindhouse throwback films (look for Machete Kills soon), this is another movie that knows what it is and embraces its genre, flaws and all. It has ridiculous moments, it's full of gore, nudity, and profanity, and is 100% wonderful. Rutger, the hobo who takes up arms against the city he lives in, becomes a homeless vigilante that blows away crooked cops, pedophile Santas, and other scumbags. Fantastic.