Monday, July 9, 2007

Hard Candy

We are immediately confronted with the controversial subject of pedophilia. Coupled with that dark and evil container for all that is evil: the internet
As far as I know this is the most mainstream film to deal with such issues. The basic premise of the film is that the young girl who is sought out by the older man online turns out to be the one who was doing the hunting, as she seeks to take out her anger and vengeance on the man she suspects to be a pedophile.
It is a subject matter which could have potentially had audiences the world over gritting teeth, anxiously hushing each other and scurrying out of the cinema and caused someone at some poor censorship committee to lose their job when an angry British mob got out of control. I don't mean that it could have been perverse, I just mean that it could have been forcing a subject which we all know happens in real life into our faces, which most people get pretty gritty about and prefer not to think of these things actually happening...
Such a film would have had many people talking but would have been gut wrenching and no-one would have actually enjoyed seeing it.
Thankfully, Hard Candy is not a film resembling any of that.
The director did a good job of making the subject matter prominent without taking it a crucial step into painstaking reality, and thus made a film that can be watched and enjoyed without the awkward nagging that can often come after seeing a film that points out something quite horrible that's actually happening in the world but we'd rather not think about (Like "Hostel" AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH Just kidding. Fuck you Eli Roth! Seriously though... Like an Inconvenient Truth: The Film That Makes You Think That Maybe You Should Do Something).
So, thanks to a well placed director and some extremely well played acting, Hard Candy is an enjoyable film, the greatness only multiplied by the fact that there are only two actors and one set for about 95% of the film.
A perfect film?
Not at all.
In fact, not close, here comes the criticism!
I feel that, because the director made sure to tip-toe around making the film too controversial, since it would have been very easy to do so, the film manages to evoke no thoughts or feelings whatsoever... there are moments when you think something very wrong has happened or is happening such as a particular scene when the pedophile is being brutally tortured by the young girl.
The initial reaction is almost to cheer on the girl as she sticks it to the perverted fucker.
But so as not to make the film have an extreme bias we are quickly made to think that maybe this little girl is just nuts and maybe is going too far against a man she has no evidence over.
Then we're quickly flip flopped back to remembering that this guy clearly is a fucktard and deserves everything he's getting.
Then you're reminded that the girl is a bit of a psychopath.
Then you're reminded that the guy is sick.
She's a psycho
He's a cunt
And so the movie goes on, flip flopping around thoughts so much that it's impossible to stick to one or even think about any sort of point the movie might be making, which I'm not sure it does...
I think the director sort of chickened out of trying to make any point because to do so would be to enrage someone or other out there...
So, I'll give this one 3/5 mainly due to some good acting, and some credit does go to the director for taking the subject matter and making it completely unpreachy. I just feel that it could have been some preachy about something.

Hard Candy's IMDb Page


dirt said...

I have to say I really, really loved this movie. We saw it opening weekend and knew next to nothing about it. I thought it could have used a good trim... like, at least 15 minutes could have been cut. But the performances were strong, the story original and the twists interesting — if occasually a tad unbelievable.

Spike Vicious said...

I enjoyed it too. I think my reviews come across as alot more critical than I am about a film... I do that in real life too though.