There are a number of advantages to being a man. I don’t have to wear makeup; people aren’t as critical of what I wear; and one of those advantages is not getting pregnant. Therefore, the premise of Prevenge is one that I can say with 100% certainty will never happen to me. Don’t get me wrong. Pregnancy is a beautiful thing, I know. I was one of those people who were born. But that premise I mentioned just a second ago? Well, it’s an unborn child instructing its mother to slaughter people.
Yep. Not this guy.
I mean, I’m open to a number of suggestions by family and friends, even complete strangers. But I don’t want to listen to anyone speaking to me from inside my tummy. A guy has to have a code. You know?
Prevenge is about a young woman named Ruth that is hearing voices… well, one voice in particular: her unborn daughter’s. This inner monologue is telling her to kill people. A lot. While the first couple of victims appear to be random pieces of trash that are better off dead, we soon discover there might just be pattern to this madness.
Written, directed, and starring Alice Lowe (who was actually pregnant at the time of filming), Prevenge jumps right into the thick of it and fills us in on the backstory as we jettison along. The pace is constant and doesn’t have many lulls, partly assisted by the humorous interactions between Ruth and her well-intentioned midwife, wonderfully played by Jo Hartley. The banter between these two is a welcome palette-cleanser between the violent interactions of Ruth and her targets. Leila Hoffman, who plays DJ Dan’s mum, may have stolen the movie from both of them, though. So sweet and adorable, I just wanted to give her a huge hug. If you need some recognizable faces to quantify whether or not this movie is worth a watch – which you shouldn’t – there are also some Game of Thrones alumni in Gemma Whelan and Kate Dickie. So there.
The dreary overcast backdrop of the Welsh capital of Cardiff sets a grey canvas for the streams of blood that steadily flows throughout the movie. Each grisly scene is unsettling in a good way and will make you both squirm and laugh. Occasionally at the same time.
If there is a fault, a few of the characters could have been fleshed out (pun intended) a bit more. Some of them didn’t need much more as they were fairly skeevy as it was. The exotic pet store owner, for example, and his abundance of sexual innuendos didn’t need much more. Hell, I wanted to cut the son of a bitch. But others, I needed more from. Like Kate Dickie’s corporate persona, for example. We meet her and she’s out of the picture only a couple of minutes later. I wanted to hate her more, but didn’t seem to have enough material to do so.
Prevenge brings to term a morbid, yet fun, walk through a woman and her baby’s journey for retribution. This is one of those original movies I walked away from ecstatic that I gave it a chance.
Starring Alice Lowe, Jo Hartley, Leila Hoffman
Written by Alice Lowe
Directed by Alice Lowe