Proxy (2014)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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While walking home from her latest OB appointment, a very pregnant Esther Woodhouse is brutally attacked and disfigured by a hooded assailant. This horrible event seems to be a blessing in disguise when Esther finds consolation in a support group. Her life of sadness and solitude is opened up to friendship, understanding, and even acceptance. However, friendship and understanding can be very dangerous things when accepted by the wrong people. (c) IFC Films
Drama , Horror , Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:

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Joe Swanberg
as Patrick Michaels
Jim Dougherty
as Store Manager
Alexa Havins
as Melanie
Adam King
as Guy Playing Pool
Chris Coulter
as ER Nurse
Kristina Klebe
as Anika Barön
Bruce Spielbauer
as Marshall Michaels
Faust Checho
as Detective Allen
Jason Dixie
as Playground Father
Jason Nelson
as Pool Guy's Buddy
Jennifer Phillips
as Dr. Bales
Raymond Kester
as Raymond Sheeley
Mark A. Nash
as Anchorman
Sonny Wingler
as News Desk Producer
Erika Hoveland
as Mary Wilkins
Adam Stephenson
as Mr. Verdel
Rachel Illingworth
as Detective Oler
Xavier Parker
as Peyton Michaels
Shayla Hardy
as Ultrasound Technician
Natalie Norris
as ER Nurse
Kevin Scripture
as ER Nurse
Dianne Bischoff
as Denise Meadows
Kitsie Duncan
as Support Victim
Brittant Wagner
as Counter Girl
Erica Stikeleather
as Tattoo Artist
Steven Durgarn
as Newspaper Man
Mike Deiulio
as Newspaper Security
Kelron Mixon
as Support Group Moderator
Leleand Franklin
as Tom Warren
Jennifer Wilkens
as Anchorwoman
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News & Interviews for Proxy

Critic Reviews for Proxy

All Critics (23) | Top Critics (10)

[With] performances better suited to a high school play

Full Review… | April 18, 2014
New York Daily News
Top Critic

Parker has made a tough, brutal, and often riveting thriller.

Full Review… | April 17, 2014
Top Critic

When almost everyone on screen is nursing a pathology, interest in their fates is far from guaranteed.

Full Review… | April 17, 2014
New York Times
Top Critic

Whatever "Proxy" lacks in narrative cohesion and psychological realism, it makes up for in its compelling fever-dream quality and its probing questions about the darker side of parenting.

Full Review… | April 17, 2014
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Proxy's greatest attribute is its deliberate dismantling of the audience's assumptions. Writer-director Zack Parker has made a genre whatsit whose central mystery lies in the stealth motivations of its characters.

Full Review… | April 16, 2014
AV Club
Top Critic

Like a lot of conspiracy thrillers, the questions it raises prove more compelling than the answers it slowly teases out.

Full Review… | April 16, 2014
Village Voice
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Proxy


Sadly this movie had a great begining, but as it progresses it is sometimes brutally dull and other times pretty and creative. Ultimately a drama/horror film that feels bland and ussually just "meh", from the story, to the acting, to the disturbing moments.

Pablo Gonzalez
Pablo Gonzalez

In some ways you could say that this film's reach exceeds its grasp, but it's also an interesting character study on people, in this case two women, who seek attention to the point they would either pretend their son and husband were dead, in the case of Melanie, and, in the case of Esther, have your girlfriend knock you out with a brick and kill your unborn child. This isn't the type of characters that you see in movies every day and, for that, I must give the movie props. This is certainly a taboo subject that I think some would be scared to shine a spotlight on. It's an issue that most people would rather pretend doesn't exist, but it is very real. This is something very real, people seeking attention to the point that they'd be willing to purposely harm someone they love, whether it be their child, family member, significant other, in order to get attention from people. That's sick and disturbing and it's surprising that no one, to my knowledge, has made a movie about this subject. But I don't think this movie is perfect, the narrative certainly isn't great, it goes all over the place with too many characters too focus on, and too little time, the acting isn't particularly great, and I don't think the film does a great job at creating a truly compelling story about these people. There's so much more that could've been done with these characters than what was actually done. Getting into their psyche, explore what makes these people think these thoughts. Explore the reasoning behind their actions. These are all things this movie doesn't do. You could say that Melanie wanted to achieve fame at the expense of her family's life, but that's about it. World's Greatest Dad, one of Robin Williams', RIP, more underrated performances, explored this theme better. Someone using a personal tragedy to improve their position in life. Ultimately, and this is something mentioned in a review here, that the answers the film offers aren't as interesting as the questions it poses. I agree with that completely, but I still found, at the very least, this film to be good enough to warrant a Netflix watch. It's not flawless, it's overlong with too many characters and no real narrative focus, but it's still a good movie, in my opinion, I wouldn't blame anyone who ended up hating this movie, it requires a lot of patience. But I believe Zack Parker is a filmmaker to keep an eye out for, as he can only get better. At least you'd hope.

Jesse Ortega
Jesse Ortega

Super Reviewer


It is difficult to process Proxy as a whole, because as film, it is divided into two segments both characterized by loss, obsession, deceit, and violence. Additionally, Proxy operates under two separate genres--horror and drama, in that order. It is told in a linear storyline and progresses in what feel like various acts, each separated by fizzled-out darkness and a dramatic change in tone. At any rate, Proxy is incredibly intelligent in its design and highly original in plot. The art-house horror ambiance never leaves the atmosphere, and neither does the film's overwhelming sense of sadness and despair. It is both Hitchcockian in film technique and Lynchian in tone--perhaps a combination of each. Proxy, as previously mentioned, is two separate tales told in one linear storyline with the same characters. Due to spoilers, it is difficult to pinpoint the dramatic shift in thematic tone, but the outstandingly artistic and blood-curdling gore ought to be a good indicator of a film's dividing shift. Proxy progresses with both horrific shocks and artistic finesse, and best of all, does not disappoint during its final act. It is mind-bogglingly horror-drama told in fantastic form, and deserves acclaim for its artistic originality and thematic symbolism amongst the blood and the suffering. Proxy's dark tone, explicit gore, and sexuality make it a horror success, but its stylish avant-garde blood-splatter and metaphorical representations make it genre-defining.

DA Zapata
DA Zapata

Super Reviewer

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