X: Night of Vengeance

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X: Night of Vengeance
X- Night of Vengeance.Jpg
Theatrical film poster
Directed by Jon Hewitt
Produced by Lizzette Atkins
Written by Jon Hewitt
Belinda McClory
Starring Viva Bianca
Hanna Mangan-Lawrence
Peter Docker
Music by David Franzke
Byron Joel Scullin
Cinematography Mark Pugh
Edited by Cindy Clarkson
Production
company
Circe Films
Rough Beast
Distributed by Celluloid Dreams
IFC Films
Release date
  • 4 August 2011 (2011-08-04) (MIFF)[1]
Running time
99 minutes
Country Australia
Language English

X: Night of Vengeance is a 2011 Australian erotic thriller[2] directed by Jon Hewitt and starring Viva Bianca and Hanna Mangan-Lawrence as a pair of sex workers who witness a cop murder a drug dealer, then must evade the killer while he chases them through Sydney, Australia.

Plot[edit]

Shay (Hanna Mangan-Lawrence), a runaway on her first night in Sydney works as prostitute. She is beaten up by couple pimps because she takes one of their customer. Holly (Viva Bianca) is on her last night working as a high-class call girl before departing with one of her clients to Paris. Needing a brunette girl for one of her customers, Holly discovers Shay and recruits her for a sexual encounter. In the client's hotel room, they witness him being killed by Bennett (Stephen Phillips). The girls flee the hotel, chased by the murderer through King's Cross, Sydney's red-light district.

Holly and Shay use a cab driven by Harry (Eamon Farren), and the pair manage to evade Bennett, only for Bennett to track Holly using the murder victim's recent call list. Bennett intercepts Holly and assaults her. They drive through the street looking for Shay. It is revealed that Shay is seventeen years old and had runaway from home after her mom died. Bennett finds Shay walking through the streets, Holly warns Shay and Shay runs away. Bennett chases after her leaving his car behind with Holly inside.

Holly takes Bennett's car and rescues Shay. It is now revealed that Bennett is a cop. Holly decides to take help from her boyfriend Ligurian (Peter Docker), who is also a cop. They visit Ligurian at a strip club asking for his help. It turns out Ligurian and Bennett are friends and when Bennett tries to shoot Holly, Ligurian shoots and kills Bennett. Ligurian then force Shay to drives the car with him and Holly. Holly drives the car into a wall, killing Bennett. Holly and Shay escape with the brief case in another car. Holly succumbs to injury sustained during the car crash.

Shay uses Harry's taxi to get away with the briefcase. She opens the briefcase and finds diamonds and money in it.

Cast[edit]

  • Viva Bianca as Holly, an experienced call-girl
  • Hanna Mangan-Lawrence as Shay, a runaway who turns to prostitution for money
  • Peter Docker as Ligurian, Holly's boyfriend and crooked cop
  • Stephen Phillips as Bennett, another crooked cop
  • Eamon Farren as Harry
  • Belinda McClory as Katherine / Marilyn
  • Darren Moss as Giles
  • Freya Tingley as Cindy
  • Hazem Shammas as Willie
  • Wayne Blair as Bob

Production[edit]

X was shot in and around Kings Cross, Sydney.[3]

Release[edit]

It premiered at the 60th Melbourne International Film Festival in 2011.[1] The film was sold overseas before it premiered in Australia, which director Hewitt attributed to the difficulty that Australian films have competing against American films domestically.[4]

Reception[edit]

Rotten Tomatoes, a review aggregator, reports a 69% approval rating based on 16 reviews and a rating average of 5.3 out of 10.[5] Glenn Dunks on Oyna Magazine gave it a B+, stating that the movie "won't be for everyone, but I found myself enjoying every second of its slick, bordering on camp, nature. It's one of the most alive and confident genre titles to come out of this country in quite some time",[6] while Xan Brooks of The Guardian gave it a 2/5 rating and said, "Hewitt's pungent early scenes of Oz's underbelly have a certain crystal-meth intensity, but the buzz can't last, and the film starts to wilt."[7]

Accolades[edit]

Cindy Clarkson was nominated for Best Editing at the 2nd AACTA Awards.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Savage, Sophia (4 August 2011). "Highlights at Final Week of Melbourne Int'l Film Fest: "Attenberg," "Grey Matter," "Butt Naked"". Indiewire. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  2. ^ "X - Night of Vengeance (18)". The Daily Mirror. 15 January 2012. Retrieved 24 May 2014. 
  3. ^ Molitorisz, Sacha (20 November 2011). "Kings among men". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  4. ^ Bartlett, Myke (18 July 2011). "X marks the spot". The Weekly Review. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  5. ^ "X: Night of Vengeance (2011)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  6. ^ Dunks, Glenn (24 November 2011). "X". Onya Magazine. Retrieved 24 May 2014. 
  7. ^ Brooks, Xan (19 January 2012). "X: Night of Vengeance – review". The Guardian. Retrieved 24 May 2014. 

External links[edit]