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PIMPED

SYNOPSIS:
Two twisted housemates (Benedict Samuel, Robin Goldsworth) lure an unbalanced woman (Ella Scott Lynch) into a sexual trap with murderous results.

Review by Louise Keller:
In his debut feature, director David Barker's psychological thriller starts with promise but spirals into no-man's land when credibility becomes stretched and the basic concept loses its way. Sex, murder and dark secrets are the key ingredients of the tale that begins when Sarah (Ella Scott Lynch) meets Lewis (Benedict Samuel) for a potential night of passion. Barker has collaborated with Lou Mentor to write a screenplay that offers interesting concepts, dark themes and a set of spectacular twists.

What begins as intrigue dissipates as splatter kicks in and things become just plain silly. Lynch is especially good as the troubled Sarah, whose inner voice is eerily portrayed. If you like a fright, there are few good ones here. I jumped in my seat, made audible gasps and covered my eyes at times in horror. Ultimately it is the lack of connection to any of the characters that distanced me from the film, stopping me from caring about the outcome.

Production design is excellent with a pleasing colour palette; the attention grabbing opening party scene with twosomes, threesomes, booze, drugs and outlandish costumes is terrific. Watch for the scene in which Lewis and his crude housemate Kenneth (Robin Goldsworth) indulge in competitive indoor golf putting. We soon learn there is more that is warped than the floor. The surprises and twists start pumping out when Sarah and Lewis get together. Night shots of Sydney's skyline act as interstitials to the action.

Most effective is Pete Jones' music score that creates an ominous mood throughout, including during the critical sex scene which is the starting point for the changing dynamic between the two key characters. Despite my misgivings, it's an audacious debut and the mood lingers. Pimped screened at 2018 Frightfest Film Festival.

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 0
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 1

PIMPED (MA15+)
(Aus, 2019)

CAST: Ella Scott Lynch, Benedict Samuel, Heather Mitchell, Lewis Fitz-Gerald, Robin Goldsworthy

PRODUCER: David Barker, Annie Kinnane

DIRECTOR: David Barker

SCRIPT: David Barker, Lou Mentor

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Josh Flavell

EDITOR: Marianne Khoo

MUSIC: Pete Jones

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Bethany Ryan

RUNNING TIME: 90 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Roadshow

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: March 14, 2019







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