A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Power and corruption can be challenged and overcome -- though in this instance, innocent people are hurt in the process. Non-violent intentions can sometimes have violent outcomes.
Positive Role Models
The group of environmental activists have worthy motives, yet operate beyond the law in criminal circles. None are particularly likable, but the main couple, Conrad and Winnie, show caring attributes, especially Winnie, who is protective and kind toward her disabled brother, Stevie. Criminal activity is shown to extend to the police and those with political power, where manipulation and corruption are rife. But one police officer attempts to expose the corruption.
Characters are almost exclusively White, but it does have women in leading roles, who are portrayed as smart, capable and brave, and developed enough to have darker sides as well. A disabled character is prominent throughout the film, and is developed with relationships and interests. But they are also portrayed as innocent and helpless when used as a plot device later in the film, which does little to challenge stereotypes.
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Violence & Scariness
A character is fatally stabbed in the throat with a screwdriver, resulting in blood from the neck and mouth. Items are thrown in rage. A character hits themselves on the side of the head repeatedly. Guns are handled and pointed at characters but not fired. There is passing mention of robbing an ATM and of drowning. Fish and rays are shown harpooned and dangling from fishing lines. Physical fights see characters hit with objects and their heads slammed to the ground. There is mention of an explosion, which is heard off camera and blood is splattered on the screen. Charred remains are seen in an autopsy context.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Characters are shown partially naked, but there is no full-frontal nudity. Kissing and touching leads to the implication of sex on a number of occasions. Much of the movie takes place inside an adult video shop, and a sex toy is shown on-screen on one occasion.
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Language includes multiple uses of "c--t," "f--k," "f--king," "bulls--t," "bitch," "c--k," "bastard," "ass," "pr--k," "wanker," and "p---y."
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Products & Purchases
A pornography shop provides the setting for a number of scenes. Cellphone footage is seen throughout.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters regularly smoke cigarettes. They also drink alcohol on occasion, though nobody's seen to be drunk.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Lone Wolf is an Australian crime drama that has frequent strong language and moments of intense violence. Central to the story is environmental activism with a couple -- Conrad (Josh McConville) and Winnie (Tilda Cobham-Hervey) -- becoming involved in a plot to disrupt the G20 summit. The strong language includes regular use of "c--t," "p---y," and variants of "f--k." Though less prominent, there is some bloody violence, including a character being brutally murdered by being stabbed in the neck with a screwdriver. There is some sexual content, and characters smoke cigarettes regularly and drink alcohol occasionally. Highly stylized, using video surveillance footage, as well as shots from camera phones and other technological devices, the film is grainy and gritty and there is a sense of distance and coldness to it that makes it difficult to get to know the characters. Due to the structure, the plot is slow moving and the pace may prove a little lacking in energy and immediacy for some. Adult themes including porn and sex toys, domestic terrorism, and political corruption also make it unsuitable for younger viewers. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Great effort has gone into the style of this Australian crime drama involving police and state corruption, and environmental activism. Lone Wolf's action is almost exclusively seen through a secondary lens -- whether CCTV footage or cellphone cameras -- creating a strong visual stamp and a different slant on the found-footage approach. But this also creates an additional barrier, keeping the characters at arm's length, and results in a slow-moving plot -- particularly in the first half.
The film channels current day socio-political debates and concerns about surveillance states into a crime drama that never quite musters much of a sense of urgency or scale. The performances are solid but often lackluster with characters suffering from being underdeveloped in some cases. Overall, it's a film of style over substance, which offers an eventual payoff (however predictable) for those willing to see it through, but drags its feet longer than necessary in the process.
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Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
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