A group of women find themselves in a game of survival against a group of masked killers in The Furies. One night Kayla (Airlie Dodds) and her friend Maddie (Ebony Vagulans) are kidnapped in the middle of the night, with Kayla waking up sometime later in a box in the middle of the woods. While searching for Maddie, Kayla meets other girls including Sheena (Taylor Ferguson), Rose (Linda Ngo), Sally (Harriet Davies) and Alice (Kaitlyn Boyé), who all find themselves targets of a group of masked killers. As the girls are killed off one-by-one, Kayla has to gather all of her strength to find Maddie and escape.
\The feature film debut by Australian writer/director Tony D’Aquino, The Furies takes the basic slasher film premise and combines it with a Hunger Games-style competition. Each of the eight “Beauties” thrown into this deadly game has a matching “Beast,” that serves as their protector or else face some mind-blowing consequences. In addition, Kayla quickly learns that all the “contestants” have an implant inserted into their eye that records the terror.
I will start off by giving praise to The Furies for its practical gore effects, which are quite well-executed. However, the film turns out to be a quite nasty piece of work that doesn’t have much of a story other than “watch these girls that killed in extremely brutal fashion.” It is obvious from the start that Kayla is the one most likely to survive this game, so much of the plot is a waiting game to see which of the girls are the next to die.
Other than Kayla’s missing best friend Maddie, The Furies don’t allow us to get too attached to the girls before they are killed off. The exceptions to this are Sheena and Rose, both of whom develop into antagonists of Kayla. The character of Rose is particularly bothersome for me since she is a very childlike individual, possibly on the autistic spectrum, who develops an obsessively clingy relationship, which turns to jealousy over Maddie. As someone on the spectrum myself, I just did not respond well to this character arc, especially as Rose ends up being one of the most unlikable characters of the film by the end of it all.
Overall, while I do give praise to The Furies for doing its part to keep practical effects in horror films alive, it is very hard for me to give full praise for a film that almost fetishizes its killing of women. Early on this game is described as being about the sick desires of men and I would argue the same for the film itself.