The Cured is a 2017 Irish horror drama film written and directed by David Freyne in his feature debut film.
It stars Elliot Page, Sam Keeley, and Tom Vaughan-Lawlor, and was screened in the Special Presentations section at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival.
Also known as The Third Wave (working title).
A plague called the Maze Virus has previously swept through Europe, transforming its victims into a homicidal, zombie like state. Ireland was particularly badly affected. A cure was later discovered, and 75% of those infected who could be captured have been treated and cured of the virus. The remaining 25% have proven resistant to the cure. The two groups are known as the Cured and the Infected. The Infected are held in captivity, despite public fears that keeping them alive could lead to another outbreak.
Senan and Conor are Cured patients who have been interned together. Their ‘Rehabilitation Officer’, Sergeant Cantor, has little faith that the Cured can integrate back into society without further violence, and treats them with hostility. Senan reunites with his sister-in-law, Abbie, who has a young son, Cillian. Abbie asks Senan what became of her husband, Luke, Senan’s brother, who is still missing. Senan claims ignorance of his fate, though it is revealed in one of Senan’s many flashbacks that Conor infected Senan, who then killed Luke, in the house that Abbie still lives in. The Cured have a detailed memory of what they have done while infected; many of them suffer from posttraumatic stress disorder. Conor, formerly a lawyer with political aspirations, cannot find work and is shunned by his family for his acts while infected. He forms an underground movement called the Cured Alliance, with the aim of regaining the civil liberties that the Cured have lost.
The government is planning to euthanise the 25% (5,000 patients) who are infected, despite the assertions of a prominent virologist that a better vaccine for the Infected is nearly developed. Senan takes a job at the hospital where the Infected are housed, and observes that they show no interest in attacking the Cured. This is a source of political tension in the community, as the never-infected suspect aloud that the Cured would love to see another outbreak of the Maze Virus, as they would be largely immune to its effects.
Conor attempts to recruit Senan into the Cured Alliance. Senan initially refuses, but after experiencing the hostility of society towards the Cured, he takes part in an arson mission for the group. Conor claims that the targets are uninhabited houses, but a soldier is killed and Cantor suspects Senan and Conor. Cantor approaches Abbie at her house and tells her that the Infected are linked in some telepathic manner, and that they form into packs like predatory animals. He suggests that the predatory traits are not eliminated by the vaccine, and that the Cured are still dangerous. He shows Abbie a photograph of Conor and Senan roaming together when they were infected. Conor appeared to be leading Senan in murderous acts in the photo. Conor later approaches Abbie, and tacitly admits that he and Senan killed her husband while they were infected during the early days of the outbreak.
Abbie confronts Senan and throws him out. Senan realises that Conor has no remorse for what he has done in the past, and what he is still doing. Senan assists Cantor in a sting operation to arrest Conor after he confesses aloud to the arson; however, Conor violently murders Cantor and flees. The Cured Alliance initiate a plan to free the Infected from their confinement. The Infected take to the streets, killing and infecting new victims and causing mass chaos. Irish Army troops are deployed. Senan finds Abbie, who is frantically trying to retrieve Cillian from his school. Senan rescues Cillian but is confronted by Conor, who beats him savagely. A soldier shoots Conor but he escapes. Senan, Abbie and Cillian return to their house, but Cillian is bitten and infected. Senan, knowing he is immune, takes Cillian, and tells Abbie he will keep him safe until another vaccine is available.
Some time later, a news broadcast announces that order has been restored, although 8,000 new infected people are now in captivity. During the announcement, promotional posters of Conor (as the voice of the Cured Alliance) can be seen. It is publicised that some Infected are now in hiding, as the government is again discussing euthanasia for the resistant 25%. Senan goes into hiding with the infected Cillian.
- Elliot Page as Abbie.
- Sam Keeley as Senan Browne.
- Tom Vaughan-Lawlor as Conor.
- Stuart Graham as Cantor.
- Paula Malcomson as Doctor Joan Lyons.
- Peter Campion as Luke.
- Lesley Conroy as Katie.
- Natalia Kostrzewa as Allison.
- Oscar Nolan as Cillian.
- Hilda Fay as Jo Iandecker.
- Sarah Kinlen as Chaterine.
- Barry McGovern as Patrick Ryan.
- David Herlihy as Declan.
- Ian Toner as IDV Soldier Nick.
- Gavin Fullam as IDV Soldier Smiley.
- Amy De Bhrún as American Journalist.
- Frank Cannon as Garda, Ranger, Zombie, UN Soldier.
- Judy Donovan as Moore Street Trader.
- Tara Flynn as Minister Hickey.
- Annie Ryan as Abbie’s Boss.
- Janice Byrne as Woman with Megaphone.
- Michael Hayes as Garda.
- Tj O’Grady Peyton as Husband.
- Brian Tynan as Vox Pop Man.
- Josh Barrington as Dead Soldier (Captain of SCTs).
- Chelsea Debo as Cured wife.
- Tadhg Devery as Soldier.
- Gordon Quigley as Infected.
The Cured grossed $26,630 in the United States and Canada and $297,146 in other territories for a worldwide total of $323,776, plus $48,200 with home video sales.
- Some of the scenes were filmed in the old Belfast Victorian prison called the Crumlin Road Jail.
- Elliot Page allegedly bought the entire production crew pancakes on the last day of filming.
- When Abbie and Conor talk in the park, Abbie’s shoulder bag changes from her right to left shoulder when she stands to leave.
Production & Filming Details
- David Freyne.
- Conor Barry … executive producer.
- Larry Bass … co-executive producer.
- Mark Birmingham … line producer.
- Rory Dungan … producer.
- Aidan Elliott … executive producer.
- Aaron Farrell … executive producer.
- David Grumbach … co-producer.
- John Keville … executive producer.
- Aoife McGonigal … production executive.
- Rachael O’Kane … producer.
- Elliot Page … producer (as Ellen Page).
- David Freyne.
- Rory Friers.
- Niall Kennedy.
- Piers McGrail.
- Chris Gill.
- Bac Films.
- Savage Productions (in association with).
- Tilted Pictures.
- Axinite Digicinema (2018) (Philippines) (theatrical).
- Kino Films (2020) (Japan) (theatrical).
- Shaw Organisation (2018) (Singapore) (theatrical).
- Bac Films International (2017) (World-wide) (all media).
- E.S.C. (2018) (France) (Blu-ray).
- Falcon Films (2018) (Lebanon) (all media) (Middle East, North Africa & Iran).
- IFC Films (2017) (USA) (all media).
- Movies Inspired (2017) (Italy) (all media).
- Scream Factory (2018) (USA) (Blu-ray) (DVD).
- Splendid Film (2018) (Germany) (Blu-ray).
- Splendid Film (2018) (Germany) (DVD).
- Release Date: 09 September 2017 Toronto International Film Festival).
- Running Time: 95 minutes.
- Rating: 15.
- Country: Ireland.
- Language: English.