I went down under tonight with Australian horror film The Loved Ones. I have been hearing great things about this movie since its release. From just seeing the poster I knew I was in for a bumpy ride! I suspected the plot would involve an outcast girl who snaps and takes a hostage as a prom date, but I had no idea how far the film would take it after that.
A teenage boy is driving his dad down a road in the countryside when he dodges a bloodied guy in the road, smashing the car into a tree and killing his father. Fast forward to six months later. The boy is now depressed and disconnected from his life, blaming himself for what happened. He does, however, manage enough emotion to keep a girlfriend. One day at school he is approached by a timid girl. She asks him to prom and he lets her down easy, explaining he already has someone to go with. If he could see into the near future, I’m sure he would’ve said yes.
There is a great amount of grisly torture and bone-crunching gore in this demented flick. I thought it lived up to the hype the horror media generated and I would recommend this to anyone looking for a simple but effective plot. The only drawback was the subplot about the wacky friend’s prom night experience. It didn’t serve as much of anything except filler. It is finally explained why it’s there towards the end but the filmmakers could have avoided it entirely. Also, without giving too much away, I found it hard to believe a human body was that capable after so much suffering. Still, The Loved Ones is an admirable feat in the genre and is a fresh take on the common slasher with its crazies bringing a certain family to mind…
4 drill bits out of 5
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