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The Unforgiving (2010) - Plot Summary Poster

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Summaries

  • Two survivors, who appear unwilling to answer questions, are the only links authorities have to a spate of attacks that have hit rural South Africa.

  • Rex Dobson (Ryan Macquet) and Alice Edmonds (Claire Opperman) find themselves stranded alongside the R106, a freeway just outside Johannesburg. Waiting for help, they are abducted by a masked madman who does unthinkable things to them. Both survive, but wish they hadn't. As their stories unfold, it is clear that the truth of what happened that fateful day is far worse than anyone could imagine. Investigating the crime is Detective James Hirsch (Michael Thompson), a police officer who is used to doing things his own way. The two survivors are thrown into separate interrogation cells and Hirsch questions them relentlessly about the details surrounding the events they describe. What follows is a brutal account of what happened to the two survivors. Told in an unconventional narrative structure, The Unforgiving tosses and turns between points of view and characters as the film builds to its horrifying climax.


Spoilers

The synopsis below may give away important plot points.

Synopsis

  • [From film's own website]

    Rex Dobson (Ryan Macquet) and Alice Edmonds (Claire Opperman) find themselves stranded alongside the R106, a freeway just outside Johannesburg. Waiting for help, they are abducted by a masked madman who does unthinkable things to them. Both survive, but wish they hadnt. As their stories unfold, it is clear that the truth of what happened that fateful day is far worse than anyone could imagine.

    Investigating the crime is Detective James Hirsch (Michael Thompson), a police officer who is used to doing things his own way. The two survivors are thrown into separate interrogation cells and Hirsch questions them relentlessly about the details surrounding the events they describe.

    What follows is a brutal account of what happened to the two survivors. Told in an unconventional narrative structure, The Unforgiving tosses and turns between points of view and characters as the film builds to its horrifying climax.

    Rex retells the story of how he found himself in an abandoned, rural farm house, chained by his ankle to a large slab of concrete. After numerous attempts at escaping, he is beaten to a pulp by his masked assailant and chained to a wall in an old barn. Time passes and he slowly regains consciousness to find that he is not alone anymore. Vincent Davies (Craig Hawks) is in a frantic state as he's also been tied up. The two play each other off as they try to figure out exactly what is going on. However, just as they begin to make some headway, their masked tormentor returns, injecting them with heroin and dragging Rex to a dilapidated compound. Tied and gagged, Rex is forced to make a phone call.

    Meanwhile, in a chlorine-green interrogation room, Alice reluctantly remembers what happened to her. The last thing she can recall is having a plastic bag pulled over her face as her attacker attempts to suffocate her. After a series of brutal blows to her face, Alice is left clinging on to life. Through the bloodied plastic bag she sees her assailant walking away. She manages to get to her feet, and desperately uses what little energy she has left to try to run away. But she does not manage to escape. Instead, she is caught again and savagely raped.

    As Hirsch tries to figure out the events of what happened that day, different truths emerge. Is Alice's morphine addiction hampering her perspective? Is Rex hiding something behind his cocky yet traumatised exterior? Has the search for the killer become too personal for Hirsch? And where does Vincent fit into the sequence of events? How are these four different characters connected?

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