Life through my myopic eyes.

The Loved Ones (2009): Oddness in the Outback


Every once in a great while you bump into a film that shows not only the underbelly of its protagonists but does it so well that the film becomes unforgettable. Written and directed by Sean Byrne, The Loved Ones is his first feature length film. Considering that this is his first time at bat, he has hit a home run that equals the performance of the legendary Babe Ruth.

Starring Xavier SamuelRobin McLeavy and John Brumpton the film shows three dysfunctional families and their problems. Firstly, we have Brent (Samuel) who is driving home with his dad after just getting his license. As he and his dad exchange banter, Brent takes his eyes off the road and when he looks back up he sees a bloody man standing in front of their car. Swerving he crashes into a tree.

Six months later we learn that Brent’s dad died in the crash and that Brent is planning on attending his high school prom with his long-term girlfriend Holly (Victoria Thaine). We also learn that Brent’s mother is still trying to cope with her husbands death. At school while Brent is getting things out of his locker a girl named Lola (Robin McLeavy) asks him to the prom. Replying that he will be going with Holly, but “thanks for asking,” he then goes out to meet with Holly in the car park.

It turns out that Brent is having a hard time dealing with his father’s death. He wears a razor blade  around his neck for self harming and he likes to feel close to death. It is while he is rock climbing that someone comes up behind him and knocks him out. The same person breaks his mobile phone and tries to kill his dog.

When Brent regains conciousness he is tied to a chair and Lola, who is now called Princess by her father, is having her own private prom at home and Brent is her unwilling date. After injecting him with bleach to freeze his vocal cords, she and her doting father begin a long night of torture.

In the meantime, Brent’s friend Jamie (Richard Wilson) is taking ‘goth chick’ Mia (Jessica McNamee) to the Prom. Mia’s dad is the local police constable and she is uncommunicative and seems to exist to only take drugs, drink alcohol, and have sex. Jamie is about as socially inept as they come and the two provide a lot of the movies lighter moments.

This film has some of the most cringe worthy moments I have ever seen in a film. It also has about the best cast possible. Princess’s father manages to repulse you and then make you feel pity for his character. Princess, aka Lola, just oozes insanity that has been brought about from her father not being able to say no to any request she makes.

Brent manages to make the damage that Bruce Campbell as Ashe goes through in the Evil Dead trilogy look like a walk in the park. The fact that he makes his suffering look all too real really helps to sell the film.

Special kudos to John Brumpton as Lola’s Daddy. This man manages to almost steal the show with his performance.

John Brumpton as Daddy.

By the end of the film Byrne manages to tie all the families together as we the audience realise that Princess’s madness has touched them all.

I rate just how good a film is by how I feel after I’ve just watched it. The Loved Ones fell into the category of ‘I need to see this one again!’ Australia has a brilliant knack of making horror films that stick with you. The cast lists are small and intimate and the characters so richly developed that you bond with them and really care about what happens to them.

I cannot wait to see what Sean Byrne has planned for us next.

Director Sean Byrne.

Tagged as: , , , , , , , , , ,

Categorised in: Australian Cinema, Australian Horror, Entertainment, Film Reviews, Horror Film, World Cinema

10 Responses »

  1. I’ll be reviewing this one quite soon, myself. So, I’m going to read this one after I watch and not before, Hope you understand.

  2. Wow, this sounds pretty messed up, but definitely intriguing. Something tells me ‘Daddy’ is gonna really throw me for a loop when I see him on-screen, judging from what you’ve already said. The picture of him reminds me of another creepy dad from another horror film, though I can’t remember what it was. :/ Anyway, good stuff as usual, Mike! :D

  3. Yay! Go Australian film!
    I saw this one at The Astor Theatre, Australia’s only dedicated single screen cinema (it’s a beautiful ancient heritage-listed building with chandeliers and a grand piano in the foyer and ushers in waistcoats), when it came out. I thought it was fantastic. The leads did an amazing job and it creeped me in the extreme.
    Lots of Australians don’t rate Australian movies, but I think that happens when people compare Oz cinema to American cinema. I think of our cinema as part of the ‘world’ film schema; if we try to copy Hollywood it fails miserably. I like when our films revert to their home base of considered, enigmatic, ambient stories.
    My favourite Australian film is Noise (2007) written & directed my Matthew Saville. The opening scene alone is just…woah. I can’t tell you how massive an impact it has to see a scene like that set in such a familiar place for the first time. Another one which is pretty incredible & recent (I think it won some awards at Cannes?) is Snowtown, based on the true ‘bodies in the barrels’ murders which happened near Adelaide a few years ago.
    AUSSIE AUSSIE AUSSIE ;>

  4. Nice write up Mike. I reviewed this myself not long ago, really enjoyed it. And Snowtown (which someone mentioned above) is my most viewed review ever. Brilliant but brutal film. Aussies really do know their horror!

Trackbacks

  1. The Loved Ones (2009) [REVIEW] | The Wolfman Cometh

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Goodreads

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 12,792 other followers

Blog Stats

  • 120,769 hits

Liebster Award

Liebster Award

The Versatile Blogger Award

The Versatile Blogger Award

Inspiring Blogger Award

Inspiring Blogger Award

Super Sweet Blogging Award

Super Sweet Blogging Award

The Blonde on Movies

"Cinema should make you forget you are sitting in a theater." ~Roman Polanski

Panda's Choice

Movie Reviews and Weekly Chronicles

tonybeig

Tony Beig - Promotional Clothing 2015

Kevin Taggart

Various excerpts From My Books, Blogs, 55 Worders and other interesting bits and bobs!

Despair to Deliverance

A True Story of Triumph Over Severe Mental Illness and How You Can Triumph Too

Mourgos' Book & Film Reviews!

Best Book & Movie Reviewer Ever!

I Am Not The Batman

You either die a hero or you live long enough to see yourself become a blogger.

Damian Thomas Films.. Etc

Film based randomness

thecoffeespirit!

Just a few thoughts, here and there.

Bibliophilopolis

This is a log of the author's reading activity, begun 1/1/2010

3D Fantasy Art Blog

3D Fantasy Art

THE AMAZING MOMENTS IN DAILY

"FVS" Alan Reynaldi Husain

The Venetian Vase

crime and detective fiction

Fabletechnologies (Fable Technology USA)

Web Development Company USA

Cutenesss

More than just beauty & looks

Lightningpen's Blog

Imagination becomes art when passion tricks insecurity

southern star wanderer

Because not all who wander are lost ~J.R. Tolkien

Cyan Attributes

Smile! You’re at the best. Change is good. The sooner you start, the sooner you'll see the difference.

AddHorizon

A blog about anime, fun, life, humor and entertainment!

larondedelivres

On ne vit qu'une fois

Geek Is The New Black

A blog about movies, TV, art and whatever else I can come up with

The Newswatch Television Official Blog

Telling America's Story for Over 20 Years

Kate's Blog

Photography & Entrepreneur Daily Tips

Words

Sometimes words are enough

Luminous Yellow Corner

A site that captures attention, the color of hope and sunshine.

colombiancuties

As Cuties of Colombia we're lifting our great Nation.

MrHairyBrit - Hairy YouTube Man

Bloggy Home of the Vloggy YouTuber

OdesIsPro

Living the creative life as messy as I can.

Dave's Corner of the Universe

Where strange fact and stranger fiction collide

Ad Burp

Where am I going? Who will i be? This is my self-discovery

Yacon Syrup

And other stops on my journey to "fit!"

My Blog

A fine WordPress.com site

Art Attack

Discovering art in everything

Globe Drifting

Global issues, travel, photography & fashion. Drifting across the globe; the world is my oyster, my oyster through a lens.

All Hands Drug Treatment

Addiction Resource & Sober Living Ideas

JoelMwakasege

Success Videos Cu-ration Site.

War, Conflict & Resolution

A collection of short stories commemorating WWI

The Riparian Times

The Riparian Times is a boutique publication with musings about life, travel, fashion and art.

successlabtv

This WordPress.com site is the bee's knees

7cliquemovement

A topnotch WordPress.com site

Small Business Management Tips

This WordPress.com site is the cat’s pajamas

Danescourt Camera Club

Teaching Camera Techniques for skill development. All the theory on our Blog to help understand Manual Settings on your Digital Camera

UPDAT MOVIE

watch hd full movie online free, download dh movie,watch hollywood movie, bollywood movie, tollywood movie, movie song, mp3 song, sports, online free game, online full movie, watch star plus episode,

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 12,792 other followers

%d bloggers like this: