For horror aficionados real gems can be few and far between. For every "Kill List," there are a dozen or so forgettable sequels to "Saw" and "Paranormal Activity," so it's not too often you come across a fright film worth spreading the word for. One such film that has fans already going rabid is the Australian horror hit "The Loved Ones," which has been picking up raves at festivals around the world including TIFF (where it won the Midnight Madness Audience Award), SXSW (twice!) and FilmLinc's "Scary Movies" series where this writer saw it on Halloween back in 2010. Paramount picked up the film (through their Insurge shingle) and have finally prepared it for a stateside limited release. Described as "Sixteen Candles" meets "Texas Chainsaw Massacre," the film centers on Lola (Robin McLeavy, in a gleefully insane breakout performance), a quiet teen who decides to kidnap her crush Brent ("Twilight: Eclipse"'s Xavier Samuel) after he turns her down for prom.
From there the film goes to some dark places but don't let the "Prom can be torture" tagline turn you off. It's a lot smarter and more interesting than 90% of the films that get saddled with the unfortunate "torture porn" tagline, going to some gruesome places but knowing just when to pull back for maximum tension and avoiding gratuitous violence. Though horror fans should rest assured, the film is violent and absolutely fucked up. (When you realize what the title refers to, you may gasp out loud.) While the Australian trailer for the film gave away more of the film than it should have the new U.S. trailer does a better job of setting up the story without spoiling the surprises. You can take a look at the trailer as well as the new one-sheet for the film below.
"The Loved Ones" will receive a limited release on June 1st through Tugg.com. Don't miss it.