Posted on Friday, February 11th, 2011 by IFC Films News
Tags: Bryan Poyser, LOVERS OF HATE, News, Reviews
Fraternal Rivalry and Failed Ambition
By JEANNETTE CATSOULIS
Published: February 10, 2011
The bond between two brothers becomes irretrievably twisted in “Lovers of Hate,” an unusually perceptive examination of fraternal rivalry and failed ambition.
When we meet Rudy (Chris Doubek), a bitter writer nursing a six-year-old book outline, he’s living in his Ford Escort and washing in his front yard. Thrown out by his long-suffering wife, Diana (Heather Kafka), Rudy is in no mood to entertain his visiting younger brother, Paul (Alex Karpovsky), a best-selling author of young-adult fiction. But later in the film, when all three converge on the Utah ski lodge where Paul is working simultaneously on his new book and Diana’s affections, Rudy discovers a gift for sabotage that’s far more satisfying than silent resentment.
Smartly written and flawlessly acted, “Lovers of Hate” is a Trojan horse, the kind of movie that begins so self-effacingly that we don’t expect any surprises. Concealing its cleverness in scenes that feel as natural as the performances — Ms. Kafka is particularly good as the unwitting pawn in a lifelong game of sibling one-upmanship — the story (by the director, Brian Poyser) approaches sex and relationships with a welcome maturity. So when Paul and Diana tumble onto a couch in urgent lust, their postcoital awkwardness is given as much attention as the act itself.
Flirting with several genres — romantic comedy, psychological thriller, stalker drama — while committing to none, “Lovers of Hate” accumulates tension in the smallest of ways. Within this sick love triangle, even something as simple as a photograph on a laptop will give you chills.
LOVERS OF HATE
Opens on Friday in Brooklyn.
Written, directed and edited by Bryan Poyser; director of photography, David Lowery; music by Kevin Bewersdorf; production design by Caroline Karlen; produced by Megan Gilbride; released by IFC Films. At the reRun Gastropub Theater, 147 Front Street, Brooklyn. Running time: 1 hour 33 minutes. This film is not rated.
WITH: Chris Doubek (Rudy), Heather Kafka (Diana), Alex Karpovsky (Paul) and Zach Green (Dexter).