6.8/10
4,837
38 user 85 critic

The Square (2008)

Trailer
1:25 | Trailer

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ON DISC
A man's life begins to unravel when his mistress brings him a bag of cash.

Director:

2 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Carla Smith
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Jake
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Barney
Stephen Weston ...
Charlie
Lisa Bailey ...
Wendy
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Martha Yale
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Eddie
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Leonard Long
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Smithy's Mate
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Smithy's Mate
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Lily (as Hannah Mangan-Lawrence)
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Storyline

Lovers Ray and Carla plan to burn down her house at Christmas, to run off with her husband's drug money. Ray has a side scheme going too, taking kickbacks on the love hotel project whose construction he's managing. The suburban Aussie marrieds live across a river from each other, the much older, domesticated Ray in a upper middle-class neighborhood, Carla on the wrong side of the water. The cheaters will lure their families to the same Christmas picnic celebration, to provide alibis while still being able to sneak off and chat about the arson. Carla's tow-truck owner hubby, Smithy, is a fearsome tough to cross, so will the philanderers' holiday gifts come through, or explode in their lying faces? Written by David Stevens

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Some things can't be buried. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 July 2008 (Australia)  »

Also Known As:

En lieu sûr  »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$17,092, 11 April 2010, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$47,174, 8 November 2013
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Nash Edgerton's first feature film. See more »

Quotes

Gil Hubbard: One man points his dick the wrong direction, and here we are...
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Soundtracks

How Lovers Pray
Written by Ben Lee
Performed by Jessica Chapnik Kahn (as Jessica Chapnik)
Produced by Ben Lee and Nic Johns
Courtesy of Inertia/New West Records
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Script's fine for the genre but the director fails to juice it
3 May 2010 | by See all my reviews

What would be a fun find on cable one night isn't worth a trip to the theater. An expertly plotted story (with a particularly clever blackmail subplot) suffers from uninspired casting in the male lead. This actor embodies the film's fatal flaw: an almost total lack of humor.

Film noir is necessarily a downer genre but think how funny Body Heat and Chinatown are with their clever protagonists (and Chandler always has you laughing). The Square, however, features morose David Roberts who should be dancing with joy from his affair with the much younger, cuter, livelier Claire van der Bloom. But he's conflicted from the get-go and the director never lets us see what drew these two together in the first place. There's little chemistry between them and a few scenes between two dogs hold more joy than anything between the impassionate human lovers. The most interesting male actor is co-writer Joel Edgerton and the story might have had more sizzle if he'd been the lead.

But the plot does indeed generate some real tension and the film is watchable. Bodies pile up unexpectedly, there's a mystery inside a mystery with the strong subplot and the ending holds real surprises. The script works but the director, through his casting and tone choices, lets it and us down.


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