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A PERFECT GETAWAY

About The Production
From his screenplays for such blockbusters as The Fugitive and G.I. Jane to his directorial efforts including the sci-fi classics Pitch Black and The Chronicles of Riddick, filmmaker David Twohy has long enjoyed playing with established genres as he designs his signature stories. For A Perfect Getaway, it was an exotic location that drove both his characters into action and plot into madness.

While on vacation on the lush island of Kauai, Hawaii, Twohy was inspired to plot his latest project, one that happily breaks the conventional rules of three-act linear storytelling. As he hiked the switchbacks of Kauai's remote trails, Twohy began imagining an intricate thriller of switchback deceptions about two serial killers who track and eliminate their victims.

The writer/director begins his story with a raucous wedding reception at the W Hotel in Westwood, Los Angeles. Well-wishers at a party for Cliff and Cydney pass around a video camera that records the crowd's enthusiasm for the blissful newlyweds beginning their life together. The camcorder tracks Cliff and Cydney's departure for Hanalei and their honeymoon on the legendary hiking trails of Kauai.

A sightseeing chopper banks to reveal Waimea Canyon, Wai'ale'ale Crater and waterfalls that plunge 3,000 feet. Pods of whales breach the waters on the Na Pali Coast and Kalalau Beach, a golden crescent of sand, is cordoned off from civilization by steep green mountains that dip into the Pacific. There are only two ways in and out of this paradise—by kayak or by the Kalalau Trail, an 11-mile trek along the island's north shore. The trail spans from Ke'e Beach to Kalalau Valley and requires up to two days to complete. The island promises an adventurous Cydney and Cliff check out their surroundings. beginning to Cydney and Cliff 's new life together…until they learn that serial killers are on the loose.

Twohy had no interest in creating a paint-by-numbers thriller and refused pressure from other would-be financiers to make the story more conventional. "I could see the temptation,” he says. "The story does set up fairly conventionally, like a straight-ahead thriller. But then halfway through, it kind of explodes in your face as I turn over all the cards, revealing who the killers are. In doing so, that messes with the audience's sympathies and expectations. The second half of the movie then goes dark and dire and fairly extreme.”

His wide-eyed city dwellers become fascinated with two new friends they meet on the trail. Nick and Gina are a rugged pair who hike and hunt together, and Twohy's newlyweds find them exhilarating. In addition to the tough-but-charming couple, Cliff and Cydney come across two mysterious hitchhikers named Kale and Cleo. Unfortunately, they can't decide whether their new acquaintances are dangerous or harmless.

When news spreads among the group that there has been a series of tourist murders on Oahu—and law enforcement believes the psychopaths have come to their tropical paradise of Kauai—the travelers band together for safety in numbers. The problem is that they begin to suspect the killer is among them.

The director explains the rationale and motivations of his characters: "When we're on vacation, we often do things we otherwise wouldn't. We talk to people in different ways. We tell more about ourselves than maybe we should. That's one of the key things that allows the serial killers in our midst to keep learning and to keep changing identities.”

While the script's arrhythmic structure was initially a roadblock to setting up financing, Twohy remained passionately committed to his story in which the characters' motives dictate the plot. He found his ideal production partners in Ryan Kavanaugh and Tucker Toole

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