|Page 1 of 2:|| |
|Index||17 reviews in total|
6 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
Interesting CreepyMovie, though in the end it became lot more Twisted,Sebastian Gregory, Joshua Payne and Helene M.Lawrence kept me on Edge., 2 January 2011
Author: Saad Khan from Pakistan
ACOLYTES CATCH IT ( B ) Acolytes is about two teenage Boys and a Girl who find a dead body in the forest and rather then telling the police, the boys plan to use the serial Killer to take their revenge from the Guy, who molested them when they were kids. The concept of the movie is really interesting and the execution is also very enthralling. Although, in the end it became lot more Twisted than expected. Sebastian Gregory, Joshua Payne and Helena M.Lawrence make a dynamic trio. Watching them juggling through all was quite enjoyable. Joel Egerton is becoming my favorite Aussie Man, I loved him in Animal Kingdom and here he didn't have much scoop but he did creep me out through his mustache. Michael Dorman as Child Molester was pretty darn good. Overall, really good Aussie Thriller, I enjoyed it because of its story and performances by ensemble Aussie actors.
12 out of 20 people found the following review useful:
Interesting ideas in an exceptionally poorly executed film, 14 September 2009
Author: sk_arts from United States
Acolytes presents an interesting mix of original concepts in "screaming
teen" cliché horror with a more thriller-like pacing. In some ways
Acolytes is very successful, but in many other ways the film fails
Overall Acolytes avoided the typical archetypes of the naivety and innocence of youth of endless horror films in the like of Cabin Fever, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and countless other films where unsuspecting and relatively naive and innocent teenagers, have sex, run around screaming and one-by-one are plucked off by some sort of monster. Instead this innocence is replaced with pride, retaliation, and arrogance. The characters had several opportunities to save themselves from immanent death and despair, but failed to do so due to their own personal demons. In the end you were left with the feeling that there were no (and perhaps are no) innocent victims.
As the name implies, the film also touches greatly on following a leader or authority. This was used in a direct sense of if the main character would become like the serial killer and was also used less directly throughout the film. Following a central figure is a reoccurring theme throughout the film.
Through all this, the film makers also incorporated a lot of cliché, which I suspect was intentional and gave the film a unique mixture of depth as well as shallowness which I found intriguing. This, perhaps inadvertently, plays well with the characters who are, at first appearance very shallow but as the story unfolds it becomes obvious that they are, at least the two main male characters, quite complex.
Technically the film has a lot of problems however. The cinematography, which is typically regarded highly, I find rather sophomoric and over-stylized, utilizing formulaic 2/3 approaches far too rigidly. Many transitions I felt were also over-stylized. The use of symbolism was not only vague, but also greatly over used.
The plot was poorly planned and relied exclusively on misinformation in order to achieve a rather hokey twist ending, which was poorly resolved and leaves viewers confused. Methods used to resolve the climax are cheap and ill-prepared, motivations are routinely unclear, and major plot points remain untied in the end.
Overall, the film's relative originality, themes and thesis are lost in a maze of poor technical execution, over-stylized imagery, unclear motives, obtuse and unnecessary symbolism and cheap twists maintained only by a lack of or entirely incorrect information.
If the film were better executed, it would have been excellent. However, Acolytes receives only two stars in my opinion.
16 out of 29 people found the following review useful:
Painfully Contrived, 9 September 2008
Author: halejon from Canada
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This was a decent movie for the first half. Too many cheap BOO! moments
but the tension builds, the bad guys are creepy and everything seems to
be setting itself up nicely. The kids are not particularly deep but
hey, that works for teens.
Then it just gets ridiculous and tries way too hard- the "why in the world would he/they do that?" moments overwhelm anyone's capacity for suspension of disbelief, the twist involves too many ridiculous coincidences, and the title comes from a late attempt to philosophize some meaning into the film that goes nowhere and is quickly dropped. There was laughter in the theater at moments that were in no way supposed to be funny.
Great premise but just badly written and doesn't hold together. Some very nice shots but they're hard to enjoy while you're rolling your eyes.
15 out of 28 people found the following review useful:
Unreasonable and Absurd Plot, 22 July 2009
Author: Claudio Carvalho from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The teenager Mark (Sebastian Gregory) has a crush on Chasely (Hanna
Mangan Lawrence), who is the girlfriend of his best friend James
(Joshua Payne) and is always teasing him. Mark and James share a
secret: they were raped by the punk bully Gary Parker (Michael Dorman)
when they were younger. While wandering in the woods, Mark witnesses a
suspicious man with a shovel filling a hole and then sneaking from the
place in a 4x4 Discovery with a butterfly cover on the spare tire. Mark
tells James and Chasely and they return with shovels to dig the
location, where they find the corpse of a woman. Instead of calling the
police, they decide to find whether the killer lives. They discover
that his name is Ian Wright (Joel Edgerton) and lives in the suburb
with his wife and their baby. Mark and James blackmail Ian, ordering
him to kill Gary Parker. However, the killer presses Gary and discovers
the identities of the teenagers, reverting the situation and disclosing
a dark secret about Mark.
"Acolytes" has a promising beginning with the weird relationship among Mark, James and Chasey and their discovery of the grave of a Caucasian woman. The first unreasonable and absurd situation is when the trio does not call the police and decides to investigate the possible killer. However, the conclusion when Ian teams up with his acolyte is so stupid and unthinkable that irritates. My vote is five.
Title (Brazil): "Caçada Sinistra" ("Sinister Hunting")
16 out of 30 people found the following review useful:
Excellent Movie, 17 May 2009
Author: (firstname.lastname@example.org) from United Kingdom
I Would have to disagree strongly with the previous lame comment. I watched this not expecting too much from it. The Fact is that the cast were superb, Especially The lead Teen Female. The dark sides of them all came through, all were messed up in an not obvious way. There was an underlying current which ran through the movie of teenage angst and sexuality. The serial killer role was played well also as you could feel he had gone through what they had as children. What this movie is, is a strong drama/thriller. Yes I would agree they don't do the obvious, but you could relate with the messed up teenage heads they did what they did and it is believable. Also a decent dark ending, instead of which could have so easily been an opt out happy one. The attention to detail in the movie was fantastic also. I very good solid 7 out of 10. A little slow at times, but lets a thinking person see where the characters are coming from.
6 out of 11 people found the following review useful:
Seemed like a good idea at the time., 5 October 2009
Author: lost-in-limbo from the Mad Hatter's tea party.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Jon Hewitt's little Aussie horror / thriller 'Acolytes' had a strong
base to work with as it focused on two teenage boys Mark and James who
were physically abused when youngsters by a psychotic bully, Gary and
he still happens to be on the scene. By chance Mark discovers a fresh
grave in the woods and witnesses the culprit leaving in their 4WD.
Thinking maybe its drugs or cash. Himself, James and his girlfriend
Chasely head back the next day to unearth it, but discover a body.
Still wanting revenge on Gary, they decide to find the whereabouts of
the serial killer and secretly blackmail them into killing Gary, or
they'll go to the cops. The opportunity might be worth the risk, but
they soon find out it won't be all that easy.
Director Hewitt sets up a deceitfully macabre and hauntingly slick serial killer film well the serial killer element can almost be seen as the tool for the story's progression because the central piece could be labelled more so the relationship between the three broodingly angst, but damaged teenagers who really succumb to a lack judgement. The sound idea is made up of many possibilities, but the ambitious narrative does become a bit of jumble losing shape with its jaded editing techniques and jerky flashback sequences. I was getting a little confused with the incoherent shifts in the story's developments, but soon after the film had finished the pieces did eventually come together, despite the contrived occurrences for these things to actually work. It's visually atmospheric style was very similar of the enigmatically uncanny 2003 Australian horror 'Lost Things'. Just like that film, the pacing is purposely slow-going (too casual or artsy for some) and keeping a downbeat frown throughout, but remains psychologically gripping with its metaphorical undercurrents and pessimistic tone. After the ponderous set-up, it storms up moments of suspense and explicit brutality, by transcending in to a game of survival when those who thought they were in control find out they bit off more than what they could chew or did they? When it erupts there's a real dark edge leading to a dangerously murderous impulse revealing a little more than we first thought. While it's not a perfect balance and feels rushed, it's intriguing to how it eventually goes on to play out. Nonetheless watching the two alternative endings on the DVD, I actually preferred those two takes over the original theatrical choice.
The dialogues are fairly sparse and if so quite straight forward, with it concentrating on its moody styling to invoke the emotional pull. Truthfully most of the characters that enter the frame (the main players) isn't particularly likable and can be said to be unpleasant or obnoxious. This however doesn't hamper any of the performances. Sebastian Gregory, Joshua Payne and Hanna Mangan-Lawrence provide good, honest portrayals of the teenagers who find they are in over their heads. Joel Edgerton emits a plausible intensity and uneasiness from his casually creepy facade as the suburban serial killer. Michael Dorman gives a capable turn as the crazily violent bully.
Rich locations (filmed in Queensland) are made to great use, where the authentically stunning backdrops have the outskirts of suburbia intrusively entering the forlorn wilderness. Hewitt really does cement a constant eeriness to when the scenes hit the chilling woodlands because of the clinically sharp photography (as there's plenty of excellent imagery captured) and distinctively howling score. However there are some generic inclusions involving unnerving sound effects and clichéd jump scares.
11 out of 21 people found the following review useful:
Apparently, Aussie teenagers are just as dumb, 26 July 2009
Author: siderite from Romania
This is not truly a horror, more of a slasher variation. Three teens
stumble upon a serial killer. They decide to not call the police. That
about settles it right there and then. About one hour more of absurd
behaviour and thinking and the movie ends.
The film had its good parts, mainly the relationship between the three teens and the psychological tension at the end. The middle, however, was pretty damn annoying, especially the flashbacks at twice the sound volume that instead of frightening me were making me fast forward.
Bottom line: some Australian movies are very good. This is not one of them. I rate it slightly below average because of the premise. Could have been a lot better with a minimum of effort.
beguiling Jem from down under......., 5 January 2013
Author: nightwatch4773 from Canada
Wow I am just loving films from this country over the last decade that started with Wolf Creek. So buckle yourself up and get ready for a twisty, gutsy, gory and entralling thriller from down under that will have you head spinning to New Zealand. This was a film that could've been 3 hours long and I would've still wanted more. This film will never hit the house waves considering it has visited the filmfest circuit for years and just now has displayed its insidious roots to DVD. I believe the film was made in 2008 and just saw the light of day of DVD in 2011. What a shame!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! because there are a plethora of great directors and films waiting but its too bad that they will lurk in the Panumbra and never see the eclipse...
A brilliant idea, poorly executed., 5 December 2012
Author: Valerie Morrison from United States
What starts off as a sleepy drama about a damaged psyche turns into a fast-paced, terrifying, and entirely believable horror film. The filmmakers don't coddle the audience and don't dwell on the plot twists; that is to say, if you're not paying attention, you'll miss some key points. There were a couple scenes where I had to rewind and explain parts to my friends. This movie was visually compelling, and the young actors and actress did great jobs conveying their anger, fear, depression, and angst. So I was never able to pinpoint what my problem with this movie was. I'm not sure if it's the slow pace or the resolution at the end, but I ended up feeling disappointed with the directors. This movie could (and should) have been much more.
Innovative and artistic, yet too cluttered and hard to follow., 12 November 2012
Author: Nitzan Havoc from Israel
As always, a review by a horror films freak, not a professional critic
nor even a cinema student.
For starters - allow me to admit that, having watched the film from beginning to end with no pauses, as the credits rolled I was left completely bewildered. As the twists occurred, I was able to realize I was in fact witnessing a twist, but not thoroughly comprehend what the twist was or what made it a twist.
As always, I came here to IMDb as soon the film had ended, and was much relieved to find out I wasn't the only one with more questions than answers... It was as if James's shirt slogan ("question everything answer nothing") was meant for this film. So after doing a little reading I was able to fully understand the plot, the twists and how they came together. All in all I'd have to say that the story was quite good and that the "bully" and "serial killer" genre clichés were collaborated in quite an original and artistic way (if somewhat unnecessary). However, the fact that I and many others found it so hard to follow and understand (whether due to poor storytelling or the extremely confusing shooting and cinematography) is a shortcoming in my book. Although I did find the cinematography, as well as the use of sound during the flashbacks, to be innovating and impressive. Some of you might find it tacky though.
Finally, I really loved the soundtrack, definitely going to look it up! So in conclusion - while this film could have been better, if you manage to look closely and carefully follow every scene you'll probably enjoy it. Won't be easy though!
|Page 1 of 2:|| |
|External reviews||Parents Guide||Official site|
|Plot keywords||Main details||Your user reviews|
|Your vote history|