All posts tagged revenge

Prevenge-A Shudder Canada Exclusive Coming March 24th!

Published March 20, 2017 by vfdpixie

Prevenge (2016, 1 hr 28 mins)

Alice Lowe as Ruth wreaking havoc maternity style.

When a woman carries a child, one can only imagine the range of emotions that she feels, from joy to fear to a sense of wonder at the life growing inside her. Only she knows how she feels, and only she has that special connection with her unborn child. But what if that connection is a sinister one; one of murderous intentions and revenge? This is the story that director and writer Alice Lowe brings to us in the dark horror comedy Prevenge. Making its way through the film fest circuit including TIFF 2016 and SXSW this year, you can now see it as a Shudder Canada Exclusive set to launch on March 24th.

Ruth (Alice Lowe) is a pregnant woman grieving the death of her partner. She is shell-shocked, alone, and on the surface, void of emotion. Inside, however, she listens to the nagging voice her unborn child, who forces her to become a serial killer out for vengeance. Ruth keeps a baby scrapbook, but instead of baby’s first ultrasound, there are notes and crudely drawn pictures of her targets. Her vengeance goes into overdrive as the twisted little life inside provokes her to kill these unsuspecting people who, to her, held great significance with the fate of her lost husband.

Absurd conversations and laugh out loud moments comprises this darkly clever film. With plenty of double meanings in the script, is also a thing of reflection as motives and a gross contradiction come into play. The notion that a pregnant woman about to bring a life into the world is also taking lives in most unpleasant ways toys with our sensibilities, conventions and taboos about a mother-to-be.

The nature of this pregnancy is truly parasitic. I have never been pregnant, and never will be, but the idea of being at the mercy of an organism living inside you is an awe-inspiring and scary prospect. I can only imagine what it would feel like to be ruled by something growing inside you: what to drink, what to eat and how you feel dictated every moment by a little interloper in your belly, and Ruth plays host to a rather nasty baby, or so it seems. Her telling appointment with midwife Nurse Jenny (Jo Hartley) is hilarious and chilling at the same time as she tells Ruth that her unborn daughter has all the control and “baby will tell you what to do.” Does this statement push her over the edge, or is the baby really using her as a puppet of mass destruction? We’re not quite sure what to believe about Ruth’s mental state, but it’s a truly interesting ride to say the least.

Alice Lowe is best known for her extensive comedy work, writing and acting in several British television and film projects, especially the 2012 black comedy Sightseers which she also co-wrote. She’s well versed in finding humour in the horrific, and Prevenge is that and much more. It’s a study of what someone who is grieving from loss may feel in an extreme situation, and for all the laughs the film provides, it’s also deeply emotional. Ruth has lost her partner and she is alone with a baby on the way exhibiting some not-so-normal tendencies.

According to an interview from this past February in The Guardian, Lowe reportedly wrote the script in 2 weeks and shot the film in 11 days while she was actually pregnant. For a first time director who has also written and starred in her own film, that’s no small feat, and her cast was just as effective as Lowe herself. With familiar faces like Hartley of David Brent: Life on the Road, and Kate Dickie of The Witch, you’ll enjoy seeing them take part in this darkly humorous fiasco. Pay attention to the throbbing synth scoring by Toydrum and some great cinematic moments, one of which had very distant echoes of the insane subway scene in Andrzej Zulawski’s Possession (1981).

For her directorial debut, Alice Lowe went with what she knew (well, sort of anyway). Prevenge is a study of the fears of being a new mother and the grieving process in a most surprising way. Be sure to see it when it launches exclusively on Shudder Canada this Friday!


Eega: TADFF13

Published October 30, 2013 by vfdpixie


Eega ( 2012, 2 hrs 25 mins)

On Bug Night, the standout entry had to be the Tollywood action flick Eega.  I think this was the unofficial fan favourite.  With its crazy premise and action galore, it’s hard not to fall in love with the film’s unlikely hero:  the housefly.

Nani (Nani) has pursued Bindu (Samantha Ruth Prabhu) for two years.  Bindu pretends to not be interested, but secretly loves him as well.  She is a micro artist (someone who makes art from tiny canvases like grains of rice), and also a non-profit worker who catches the eye of Sudeep (Sudeep), a rich and ruthless industrialist who always gets what he wants, and he wants Bindu.  When he realizes the courtship between her and Nani, he eliminates his competition by murdering Nani, and, consoling Bindu over the loss of her friend, moves in like the shark he is.  Nani’s last words to Sudeep were a vow to kill him if he went near to Bindu.  This vengeance fuels the reincarnation of Nani as a fly.  Yup, you heard me, a fly.  Sounds crazy?  Well, it actually works.  Nani comes back to protect the love of his life, and with her micro artistic talents and love, fulfills his vow as a tiny fly.

I love me some Bollywood films, and in this case,  Telugu or Tollywood films (the film industry based in the Andhra Pradesh state in south India).  I used to work in Toronto’s Little India, and became familiar with many of the stars (I would still like to marry Vivek Oberoi) and popular films, as well as the Bollywood format.  Most of the time, that includes family oriented subject matter, i.e., no overt sexual behaviour, although action and violence are welcome, stories that instill values, comedies and elaborate musical/dance numbers.  I use these films as a go to when I have horror movie overload, to cleanse the palette so to speak.  Limited T n’ A, some bloody moments, but mostly fun and frolic.  So I was thrilled when Eega (which means “housefly”) was included in the lineup for the festival.  And so was everyone else because this movie had the crowd cheering.

There was action, a musical number, and sci-fi and fantasy elements that kept you riveted to the screen.  The fly’s determination to foil Sudeep’s diabolical overtures towards Bindu was heartwarming and hilarious at the same time, and the performances were great.  Tongue in cheek and fun, Sudeep’s villainous portrayal and his spiral into madness as he tries to cope with a vengeful fly included some downright ridiculous moments that had the best comedic timing.  Nani and Bindu’s relationship was a touch saccharine but it worked with the film’s over the top story, and coupled with some extensive CGI animation and effects, you got a roller coaster ride that made the unbelievable believable.  Definitely worth taking a look if you want a weird and wonderful cinema experience!

Favourite Scene: It’s a tie.  This first is the fly workout montage.  Like every good action flick, the hero has to get battle ready, fueled by his revenge, to gain the upper had on his enemy.  Well, Eega does it up right.  Just has to be seen!  Then there is a scene that got everyone cheering.  I won’t give it away, but the fly gives Sudeep a direct message that will floor you!

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burke –verb (used with object), burked, burk·ing. to murder, as by suffocation, so as to sell the corpse to medical science

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