The Boston Phoenix
Review from issue: September 7 - 14, 2000

[Boston Film Festival]

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Although nearly as well packaged as the perfume, this Envy, a nasty trifle from Australian director Julie Money, has a decidedly gamier scent. Kate (Linda Cropper), well-off and middle-class, spots her stolen dress being worn by Rachel (Annalise Phillips), a stranger at a public swimming pool. So she swipes it right back, initiating a war of nerves between her family and a band of young criminal thrillseekers. Rachel gains the trust and then some of Kate's gawky teenage son Matt (Wade Osborne), pays him a visit at home with her feral boyfriend Nick (Scott Major), and, in a brutal, unnerving sequence, gives him his comeuppance. Kate retaliates with a brick through the window of the gang's house, they trash Kate's car, and by the time Matt starts writing love letters to Rachel and Kate has dyed her hair blond to match that of her nemesis, it's clear that more than just envy is percolating below the film's glossy surface. Although tense and ambiguous with its elliptical flashback structure, Envy is at best a venial sin. Screens tonight at 7:20 and 9:40 p.m. and tomorrow at 1, 3:15, and 5:20 p.m.

-- Peter Keough

Film Festival Feature Films

Shadow of the Vampire | Songcatcher | Venus Beauty Institute | What's Cooking? | The Broken Hearts Club | Envy | Goya in Bordeaux | Human Resources | Skipped Parts | Amargosa | Henry Hill | Relative Values | The Rising Place | The Contender | Pitch People | Roof to Roof | Four Dogs Playing Poker | Reckless Indifference | Requiem for a Dream | Shadow Magic | About Adam | Charming Billy | Enemies of Laughter | Into the Arms of Strangers | Running on the Sun | A Trial in Prague | Harry, He's Here to Help | A Man is Mostly Water | Seven Girlfriends

Also, Boston Film Festival short films

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