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Commentary by actors Patrick Wilson and Ellen Page
Deleted and extended scenes
“Controversial Confection” mini-featurette
DVD-ROM: Production notebook
“A smart, charming teenage girl, Hayley probably shouldn’t be going to a local coffee shop to meet Jeff, a 30-something fashion photographer she met on the Internet. But before she knows it, she’s mixing drinks at Jeff’s place and stripping for an impromptu photo shoot. It’s Jeff’s lucky night. But Hayley isn’t as innocent as she looks, and the night takes a turn when she begins to impose a hard-hitting investigation on Jeff in an attempt to reveal his possibly scandalous past.”
“Hard Candy” is rated R for disturbing violent and aberrant sexual content involving a teen, and for language.
I can’t discuss the film much without ruining some of its surprises, but suffice it to say that it’s a unique revenge/vigilante film. The whole story depends upon the performance of Ellen Page as Hayley and she more than delivers. I’ve rarely seen a young actress who can alternately play a character with such innocence, maturity, and malice. Most people were exposed to her for the first time as Kitty Pryde in “X-Men: The Last Stand,” but this movie shows she’s capable of infinitely more. Equally important is the performance of Patrick Wilson as Jeff Kohlver. He’s definitely the villain in the movie, but you find yourself occasionally feeling sorry for him, if only for a fraction of an instant. Considering what kind of character he’s playing, that’s saying a lot. Sandra Oh has a cameo, but an extremely brief one.
My only gripe about “Hard Candy” is a minor one. The film is nearly two hours of two people simply talking to each other. While the dialogue and subject matter is very intriguing, the long discussions frequently drag on. A half hour could have been trimmed from this movie and it would have been just as good.
I would recommend “Hard Candy” to anyone that likes psychological thrillers or indie films. People with queasy stomachs should probably avoid it.
This DVD is packed with good extras. You’ll find a couple of commentaries, one with the actors and one with the filmmakers. Ellen Page comes across just as mature as her character in the film. There’s also an extensive “making of” featurette that covers the casting, production, post-production, etc. It is very in-depth and should be required viewing for aspiring indie filmmakers. Also included is a featurette discussing the controversial subject matter of the film.