Dir: Lee Madsen
Starring: Genevieve Padalecki, Ellen Woglom, Matthew Hutchinson
Hated is a fairly different take on the ‘rise to fame’ sub-genre, this is a more mellow type of film about the ones who gets left behind. I do enjoy these types of films, while they can be ‘run of the mill’; generally there is something that sets each apart. What this film does a little different is the actual band aren’t the entire focus, and the narrative is more focused on the person who helps them. It is a drama, which feels very natural and quite modern.
The story here is about a group of young friends, the boys are in a punk group. Their childhood friend Veronica (Genevieve Padalecki) acts as their manager, and things start to prosper for the group. Once contacts are made, Veronica is treated badly by the higher ups and break promises to her. She’s left on the outs as the group move forward, which leads to conflict for them. How far does one go for fame and what are you willing to let go of?
This film does explore the darker side of things, in the way of personal relationships. Hated isn’t a film that simply shows the rise and fall of a band, they aren’t torn apart by drugs or crazy ego trips. It aims to put focus on the current age of the industry, and how ruthless things can get. The guys really play second fiddle to Veronica, and the heart and soul of the piece really are with her. She puts things on the line for these guys, gives it her all and gets stepped on for it. It is a sad tale, and it does go into some interesting albeit predictable places. I have to give it credit for trying to be different and shifting focus, it does work for the film.
It really begins and ends with Genevieve Padalecki, who turns in a really strong performance. She really is someone that is liked from the start and keeps the audience in her corner the entire way through. There were no tricks at play here, she was natural, and had a certain draw about her. Also quite solid was Ellen Woglom as Arryn, Veronica’s best friend and DJ. The role itself was quite simple but Ellen certain brought something to it and it felt a little more fleshed out. The guys in the band were all good, they all felt very real and like what you’d imagine a young punk band would be like. The stand out was Matthew Hutchinson; he was just very memorable and quite charismatic.
While I did have a few issues with the film, they weren’t anything that stopped it from being good and worth watching. There were parts that didn’t quite work, and characters like Betty just felt a little too unnatural and forced. It is a nicely scripted piece with strong direction work. It looked really good, and it has a decent flow to it. Hated is a nice addition to the sub-genre, something a little bit different to experience.
The Australian DVD:
The DVD I reviewed was a screener, so I am unable to comment on Picture/Audio quality.
The DVD will contain the following bonus feature/s: The Making of Hated Featurette
DVD details here.
Thanks to Bill care of Accent Film Entertainment for the copy.