August 25, 2009

Review: Beautiful (2009)

"This movie is worth seeing for the sprinkler scene alone."
Cast Members of Note- Sebastian Gregory, Tahyna Tozzi, Asher Keddie, and Peta Wilson.

As some creepy Tim Burton-esque music begins, we're told by voice over that not all is well in Australian suburbia; 2 pretty schoolgirls have gone missing, only to show up sliced to bits, a third is still missing, and the creepy neighbor kid is stalking yet another local girl. The lesson here is that it doesn't pay to be a nubile young Hottie down under. 

In cases like this, I fully endorse stalking.
The creepy neighbor kid eventually falls under the spell of the local whore, who sends him on a mission to uncover the neighborhood's darker side, and oh does he ever find it; subversive sex, old men masturbating, inappropriate dad-daughter relations, leathery rugger-bugger parties... Australia is one creepy/fun place. 

"You rush blindly into potential danger while I wait safely at home, k?"
Along the way, creepy neighbor kid discovers that one of their neighbors (the one that lives in the creepy house at the end of the creepy block) is a convicted pedo, and just might be up to his  murderous and raper-ous ways again. Will their snooping around get them into a mess that they can't escape from? Yes, yes I'd say that's fairly accurate. 

Relax, he just wants you to help him find his puppy.
I love the look of this movie which lends itself to the overall feel; everything is gorgeous and lush, with a heavy undercurrent of tainted darkness. This portrait of the suburban dream is unsettling and probably not far off from the truth. It's almost as if the beauty of the movie sucks you in until you're face to face with the ugliness that its hiding, and by that point, it's too late to run. 

This is basically a twisted coming of age story (as well as a meditation on how suburbia is all sorts of sketchy), demonstrating how a 14-year-old boy's hormones can and often do lead them right into all sorts of trouble. The acting helped drive the message home with some nice work by the leads, especially Peta Wilson. She's fantastic here. 

I liked the whole point of the movie, and I like how the director got us to "fall for it" too; all of the rumor, innuendo, paranoia, and the dynamic of a suburban neighborhood and the weight of its gossip... but the ending left me with questions.

Congratulations, you're a whore!
Thanks to this movie, I will never look at a sprinkler the same way again. I feel bad for my grass.

Trouble comes in all flavors, including wet.
I don't know what's worse; women using their sexuality to control the planet, or us men letting them get away with it. Either way, one this is certain... the power of the kitty is evil! 

Evil, evil little puss!
Not that kind of flick, I'm afraid. One scene of violence is about all that we get.
This movie just oozes sexuality, and some of it of the creepy variety, but we get only a small bit of actual skin.

Why is he looking at her face?
"What did you do to her?"

Suburban Australia is creepy. Also, snooping only leads to trouble.

This was a really well made movie, and though the ending left me with a few questions, the payoff was interesting. Definitely worth a spin on DVD when you get the chance.


Beautiful is available now on Blu-ray and DVD.

Noice. (That's Australian for "Nice.")


  1. "Noice", I do so love the Australian accent. I watched this film and thought it was pretty good, I knew you'd like it for that scene alone though!

  2. I'd like to think that I'm a tad deeper than my hormones, but in this case you were 100% correct :)~

    I love the Aussie accent too, It's neck and neck with the British accent for me.

  3. Noice review. I'm in! Gotta see this sprinkler scene...

  4. Even I'm intrigued to see this legendary sprinkler scene you speak of and I'm not male...

  5. you really have me wanting to see this...nice review!

  6. *** Spoiler Alert *** Everyone seems to be confused with the ending...I thought it was pretty obvious - the boy stalker's dad has been killing the girls, and kills himself at the end to protect his son...did I miss something?