User Reviews (9)

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  • Mixing with the A-list in Adelaide is always a treat, though admittedly, being called A-list in Adelaide is akin to being best ice-skater in Ethiopia. What does it really mean?? Thanks to on-the-rise director/producer Ursula Dabrowsky, Mel (aka RECYCLOPATH) and I were invited the the cast and crew screening of her new film FAMILY DEMONS at Adelaide's MERCURY CINEMA.

    I must say that I have become severely jaded where genre films are concerned and didn't hold out high hopes for this low-budget, indie release. It takes something out of the ordinary to hold my interest these days, one too many installments in the SAW series has all but sapped the life out of me. But I was pleasantly surprised to find that Ursula has crafted a nifty, original and effective film that maintains interest for most of its 80 minute running time.

    In short it's about abuse and the ghosts that never leave us, in every sense of the term.

    Newcomer Cassandra Kane is excellent in the lead role as Billie, the tortured teen who ends up with blood on her hands and a terrifying spectre following her every move. Kane really will be an actress to reckon with in years to come and given her young age it's all the more impressive that she carries the whole film.

    The supporting cast are all good, with special mention going to Kerry Reid as Billie's alcoholic, abusive and downright unpleasant mother.

    The film, for the most part, belies it's low-budget and is beautifully shot.

    And, credit where it's due, it contains a twist that I certainly didn't see coming. Rare these days when everything is telegraphed within an inch of its life.

    So Kudos to all involved. It's exciting to imagine what Ursula can come up with with a decent budget. Let's hope it's not too long till we find out.
  • Don't let this title slip under your radar, by far and away one of the most impressive low budget movies to come my way this year.

    Filmed to give a dark, foreboding atmosphere throughout, this movie will grab you by the throat and not let up until you get to the climatic ending.

    The relationships the director portrays throughout, are well developed and leave you in no doubt as to what the message is she's trying to put across.

    Very very impressive with a very dark subject matter, that whilst the horror elements adds to the feeling, the actual message contained in it, is far more frightening.

    Don't Miss This.
  • nogodnomasters14 September 2018
    Warning: Spoilers
    "It's a dangerous world out there..."

    An alcoholic mom (Kerry Ann Reid) abuses her daughter and denies her food. She forces the daughter Billie(Cassandra Kane) to sleep on the sofa while she entertains men. She loathes her daughter for ruining her life. While Billie is afraid of the outside world, she is forced to leave the house because she is hungry, a simple trip that becomes an adventure. It is a story of how abuse, alcoholism, and madness runs in a family.

    I didn't like the plot, the characters, the acting, or the dialogue. It reminded me of a bad 70's drive-in movie second feature. Not really a horror film.

    F-bomb, no sex, no nudity.
  • This is the perfect example that you don't need a bloated budget to make a creepy film and more importantly one that will remain with you for hours and days afterwards. I have to say the acting in this film was top notch especially with the main two leads. If I had 25 000 dollars right now and I was going to direct a low budget horror film about two young girls that were mentally and physically tortured throughout Cassandra Kane and the lead actress of the Loved Ones are my pics. Ms Kane you were amazing and I felt your pain throughout the entire film. In fact I felt your performance was tantamount to the poor tortured souls of the two leads in my favorite horror film of all time Martyrs and that is saying a lot considering it took two decades for Martyrs to exceed my previous fav film Hellraiser. I can't wait for this director to make another film and when people say they don't make horror like they used to, I laugh and say your right they make them better now.
  • Family Demons (Australian Horror/Thriller) is not strictly about a dead mother haunting her daughter. In fact, there are many components of this film that are very realistic and sadly very common in society. I couldn't help but feel for all family members in this film despite the complex family dynamics. There are some interesting twists and turns and, although the opening words at the beginning of the film discussing Adelaide didn't seem to resonate or make much sense with regards to the film itself (not sure what the writers were getting at as they didn't "fit" much), I was both enthralled by the entertainment yet cringing at the same time. There are important messages and lessons to be learned from this film about family, sexual assault, psychological and physical terror and much more. Yes, for supernatural horror and slasher fans, you will likely be satisfied as well as those that enjoy thrillers.

    It is my hope (but I have to be realistic) that the events that occurred in the film prior to the hauntings are less common in society than I'd expect. Sadly, I doubt that is the case which is why the message is so important.
  • billy_dan_courtney12 November 2018
    Had heard this was good but right away I did not like the acting, cinematography or direction. Camera work was really bad. Don't know why some people made it sound so great. The first Australian horror or crime film I have not liked in a long time.
  • This entire piece looks, sounds and plays like something done by people with no idea at all what they're doing. Some folks here are mentioning the message. OK. That's why this film gets even my lowest imdb rating of a 3.

    It's been over 10 years since this disaster - I truly hope they have moved on and done other things or at the very least, learned something. Anything.

    The minimum rating of 3 here is also to acknowledge the effort people put it. Still, just because you spent 10 hours cooking something doesn't mean you have a clue what you're doing.

    The result matters as well and in this case, the result is simply terrible on every cinematic measure. So terrible that I don't even know where to begin to dissect it and instead will just suggest people STAY THE F AWAY....
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Billie is a shy & withdrawn teenager kept as a virtual prisoner in her house by her abusive alcoholic mother in the suburbs of Adelaide. Driven to breaking point by her mother's constant abuse, Billie assaults her mother, who falls into a coma. As the mother lies dying in the hospital, Billie plans to escape to the countryside with her male friend Sean. But the constant abuse that Billie has suffered so far takes a heavy toll on her sanity, causing her to hallucinate badly, leading to a savage act that sends her over the edge.

    Family Demons is an Australian low-budget film written & directed by Ursula Dabrowsky, who is better known for her many novels for the young fiction market. With Family Demons, Dabrowsky attempts to branch out into filmmaking.

    I hate to nitpick on a film made by a fellow Australian but Family Demons is nowhere even near the stature of other Australian films. It attempts to shine a light on the effects of how abuse inflicted on children by their alcoholic parents but unfortunately the film's script is too simplistic & melodramatic to fully succeed.

    While not a bad film exactly, Family Demons suffers from an absurdly narrow narrative scope & the story goes nowhere – all it is consists of a teenager being abused by her mother, escaping only to be hounded by a pair of rowdy young men then being forced to kill her mother in order to finally escape the abuse but the emotional state of the girl causes her to accidentally kill her friend, an act that causes her to revert to the same life that her mother lived. The scope is too narrow to sustain the running time & Dabrowsky's heavy handed attempts at staging suspense fall remarkably flat, although the end revelation that the girl's friend is dead is a slight twist. The film's only saving grace is that it attempts to show the effects of how alcohol affects the Australian lifestyle negatively. I have seen the effects of alcohol as it destroys lives, mainly by having youths binge drinking & then turning violent as a result of it. There has also been a recent spate of fatal single-punch assaults on young men by those who clearly have been under the influence of this insidious drug. The only thing standing in the way of social reform is the heavy influence of Australian beer companies who make a (literal in some aspects) killing off the Australian public. That & some idiotic politicians who are clearly in the pocket of these alcohol companies – an attempt a few years ago at trying to curb the youth binge drinking culture by heavily taxing certain alcoholic drinks was defeated by a politician who was nothing more than a hypocrite. The film's attempts at showing the consequences of abuse were interesting but the script was nowhere even near the quality it needed to be in order to fully engage.
  • I agree that the message being sent across is very important, BUT I don't think this is a horror movie. In my opinion, it's more of a drama slash suspense film.

    Cinematography/Film quality: It's obviously low-budget and will look like it all throughout. Nothing outstanding in this aspect and the location is pretty much the same, but it's acceptable and better than some I've seen before.

    Actors: The lead actress is good. She looks really neurotic, though I thought there was too much heavy breathing on her part, that I was actually afraid she'd pass out. The supporting cast was good too, considering it's a movie lacking any financial backing.

    Story: I didn't find the story as amazing as what I've read in the first three reviews. Yeah, it is watchable, but nothing original and nothing that would really stand out. It comes across as borderline amateurish, but I still enjoyed the ending, which I thought made watching the movie worth it.

    The girl did not look abused, unless they were going for the verbal kind. The chain looks so thin and fragile that I had to suppress my laughter, thinking my dog could break that chain in less than a minute. There were too many loopholes in the story, I guess, but the concept is still quite adequate. ( I have this propensity of not passing up movies involving ghosts. )

    There is some blood, no gore or nudity. It's not fast-paced nor thrillingly suspenseful. It would probably make a number of people yawn, but if you're the patient kind, you'll probably survive through this.