Hounds of Love review: Psychologically intense journey into the dark

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1428 Elm was lucky enough to get an advance screening of the psychological thriller, ‘Hounds of Love’. Fear fans, this film is not for the faint of heart. 

Vicki (Ashleigh Cummings) courtesy of Factor 30 Films


The opening sequence is the best I’ve seen in years. Think David Lynch’s Blue Velvet with a dash of slow motion slices of real life freeze framed. You get the feeling that you’re cruising in a car watching the action.

Girls in short skirts play volleyball while the camera goes in for close ups of their chests. Their legs languidly caressing their skin like a lover — It’s creepy as well as intriguing. This is the POV from Evelyn (Emma Booth) and John White (Stephen Curry).

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All of this idyllic activity is broken up and the girls scatter and go about their lives. A lone teenager walks down a safe, suburban street. However, she soon has company. Evelyn and John pull up in their station wagon and ask if she wants a lift.

At this point, I was feeling a little apprehensive for good reason but of course, the girl gets in the car. Part of me was screaming at her, “Have you ever heard of ‘Stranger Danger?’” A title card flashes 1987- Perth, Western Australia. You know within your bones, the outcome for this teenager is not going to be pleasant.

From here, the movie delves into a world that’s hard to shake from your psyche. So, prepare to go deep and dark because the outside light is going to be dim for a bit.


Jason (Harrison Gilberston) looks like a young Heath Ledger and his girlfriend, Vicki Maloney (Ashleigh Cummings), are busy fooling around like the teenagers they are playing games and making out a little bit.

Things seem very placid and easy. All appears to be well. However, you can’t help but feel that this is going to somehow change in the very near future.

Courtesy of © Factor 30 Films

The minute we’re treated to the lingering sight of a boarded-up window at a house, we know we’re not in Kansas anymore. A station wagon sits in the driveway. Immediately, it becomes apparent we are at the abode of our favorite eerie couple, John and Evelyn.

Behind closed doors is a dark room, blood on the floor, tissues covered in blood, a dildo and a person bound in chains on a bed. Since only the arm is visible, we have no idea what in the hell has happened.

Meanwhile, we’re treated to domestic bliss scenes of breakfast being made, television watching which only makes this entire world seem terrifying. To make matters worse, moments later, Evelyn is lying in her bed while screaming and crying can be heard from another part of the house.

Before you know it, John is going for a ride in the station wagon and Evelyn is hanging sheets in the backyard. Once you see the vehicle heading for a desolate wooded area, reality begins to sink in. This is NOT Everybody Loves Raymond.