the furies | tony d'aquino | airle dodds | linda ngo | taylor ferguson | action | thriller | australia | united arab emirates | slasher | game | ebony vagulans | danielle horvat | tom o'sullivan | jessica baker | kaitlyn boye | harriet davies | steve morris | ben toyer
Film: The Furies
Director: Tony D’Aquino
Writer: Tony D’Aquino
Starring: Airle Dodds, Linda Ngo and Taylor Ferguson
This was another film that I heard about through the horror community including a Netflix and Chill episode. I only heard the opening as they do spoilers so I wanted to check this out first. I didn’t really know a whole lot, so that helped me coming in blind. The synopsis is a woman is kidnapped and finds herself an unwilling participant in a deadly game where women are hunted by masked men.
As the synopsis states, that is how this starts out. We have a woman who is crying as she slumps against a tree. Someone comes after her wearing a mask with a long handled scythe. Before he can kill her, another man in a mask kills him and then takes her with him.
We then meet our lead. She is Kayla (Airlie Dodds) and she’s with her friend Maddie (Ebony Vagulans). Maddie is spray painting a message speaking out against the patriarchy. She wants Kayla to write something on the wall, but she refuses. This causes a rift between the two where Maddie sprays a red dot in the middle of her sweater. The two have harsh words where we learn that Kayla has epilepsy and her friend thinks she’s using it a crutch. They part ways and Kayla hears Maddie scream. She goes to check it out to find her being kidnapped. Maddie tells her to run, but she’s taken as well.
There are images of someone getting operated on and blood coming from their eyes. Kayla then wakes up inside of a box. There’s an alarm going off and she gets out. On the box is stenciled ‘Beauty 6’. She screams and goes off running into the woods. She is found by Sheena (Taylor Ferguson) and Alice (Kaitlyn Boyé). They tell her to stop yelling and alerting others to their presence. Kayla goes into a fit. It is here that she is seeing through the eyes of someone else. When she wakes up, Alice is still there, but Sheena is gone.
They head after her and come to another box, this one has ‘Beast 6’ stenciled on it. Kayla goes into another fit as a masked man walks up, RotFace (Steve Morris). Alice does what she can to hide her before running off. Kayla can see through the eyes of RotFace as he chases after Kayla. He kills her and Kayla wakes up.
She then finds her way out of the woods and comes to weird barrier of electronic devices. As she approaches, an alarm goes off that is deafening and she has to crawl away. This brings another woman, Sally (Harriet Davies). RotFace attacks the woman and the noise brings SkinCrow (Ben Toyer), another masked man. RotFace defends Kayla who helps Sally and head back into the woods.
Kayla notices that there’s a connection when another masked man, PigFace (Morris), has his head explode at the same time that they hear something happen to Sally. She also gets a vision of her friend Maddie, through the eyes of someone else. Kayla also runs into Sheena along with a couple of other women as well. Why are they here? And who is doing this? Why is this happening to these people?
I’m not going to lie, I really dug the premise here. This is an interesting take on the slasher genre that has been played out in the more traditional sense. I really got the feel of a fun game I used to play called Manhunt. They have some interesting weapons, but not a lot of them are utilized. We get your more traditional ax, machete and knives. SkinCrow did have a hand scythe that he uses which I thought was cool as well.
Something that works in this movie’s favor is that they don’t over-explain it. They introduce that Kayla has epilepsy which plays into how we’re able to learn more about what is going on here. I don’t necessarily know if that works, but then again, the technology that they’re using is a bit futuristic. Not too far out of the realm of possibility so that is good. I will say though, I don’t like how this ends. I don’t feel that this person would be able to be found as easy as this makes it seem.
The use of Beauty and the Beast was a good touch along with what I’m assuming is mythology of The Furies title. I don’t completely recall, but I thought they were from Greek myths, but there’s a character who says something to Kayla so I’m not sure if this is something from Australia, where this takes place. That last part is important, as a section of the area is on the Outback, which makes it terrifying to try to leave as how expansion and hot it gets out there.
I should transition this over to the pacing here. I thought that it moves at a good pace. We have a runtime of 82 minutes. It doesn’t take long to establish the concept. We get that early death and then we get right into meeting our lead. I like that we learn things naturally and it does well in building the tension as they try to survive these masked killers. I was slightly disappointed though as I liked how they were building Kayla, but I feel it loses that. Rose does something that is shocking and I dug that. From the opening argument, I thought it would have finished this differently and that includes the final ending as well, which I didn’t like.
As for the acting of this, Dodds is really good as the lead though. She thinks she is weak in the beginning and we get hints of that early on into this ‘game’. What is good though is we see that change come over her as horrific things happen. That arch is good. Ngo is interesting in this movie as she home-schooled. I also think there might be hints that she might be autistic as well. That would explain some things for sure. Ferguson, Vagulans, Boyé and Davies all are good to round out the women in the movie and I thought all of the killers are imposing figures which help to build tension as well.
Something though I’m excited to talk about is the effects. They look like they went practical with pretty much everything and if there was CGI, I didn’t notice. We get a great death with an ax and a face along with a knife through a hand to just talk about a couple of them. They had me cringing and smiling ear to ear with how well they were done. It is also shot just fine in my opening. The only issue would be some of the effects where the video feed messes up. I’m willing to forgive this with why it is happening with Kayla.
Now with that said, this film had some really good things going for it. I like taking the idea like something from Manhunt and incorporating it into a slasher film. There are some interesting references with Beauty and the Beast as well as some of kind mythology as well. I thought the characters were pretty solid and distinct enough. The masks of the killers look good as are the slasher effects. They were done practical which I love. The pacing is good for this film, but I don’t like how it ends and I feel there was a missed opportunity. The soundtrack didn’t really stand out, but it also didn’t hurt the film. The use of the alarm horn was effective for sure. It fit for what was needed. Overall I’d say this is an above average film and with a few changes, could have been really good. I would highly recommend this if you like slasher films.
My Rating: 7.5 out of 10