Movie Review: Boys In The Trees


Caelia Allen, Staff Writer

“Boys In The Trees” is a 90’s Australian Halloween-themed film that presents itself as a horror with minimum scares but is a magnetic thriller that cycles around the value of teenage friendship. The film is difficult to categorize as it takes a hold of bittersweet topics and adds a chilling undertone to them. It follows Corey (Toby Wallace), a teenager enjoying his last night of high school and Jonah (Gulliver McGrath), an isolated ex-best friend of Corey, as they confront each other and years of deserted friendship.

Directed and written by Nicholas Verso, the film’s plot revolves around a game Corey and Jonah used to play as young kids. Cutting ties due to Corey’s popularity, the two estranged friends decide to spend their last night of high school catching up on old times. The movie incorporates themes of loneliness, depression and regret. They also tackle the concept that girls have to grow up faster while “boys get to live with their heads stuck in the trees.” Romany (Mitzi Ruhlmann), a teenage girl who works at the local gas station, points out the issue of early emotional maturity in females.

The film allows teenagers to be childish without feeling ashamed because in a way, they are still kids. Jonah is adamant at finding joy in his love of Halloween while Corey reluctantly follows his friend into the ridiculous adventure he has planned out. The two boys journey into the woods to conjure up stories that play into their childhood game.

Some might call this film boring or pretentious but it is surprising in the best way. From the curiosity in its adventurous beginning to the heavy tone of the ending ballad (“Death of Samantha” by Yoko Ono), the film switches through genres hauntingly without losing sight of its main theme. The theme of regret and true friendship. Corey loses sight of one his most meaningful relationships but learns the power it takes to renew that relationship even when it’s too late.