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Film / Pet

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"If that's love, then I'm a monkey."
— Anonymous YouTube Comment

Pet is a thriller staring Dominic Monaghan as Seth, Ksenia Solo as Holly, and Jennette McCurdy as Claire. It premiered on March 11, 2016 at the South by Southwest Film Festival, had a limited theatrical release on December 2, 2016, then was released to DVD on December 27, 2016.

Seth is an animal shelter worker who becomes obsessed with a waitress named Holly. When his attempts to woo her fail, he resorts to kidnapping her and trapping her inside a cage. He soon discovers that Holly is not who she appears to be, and an eerie battle of wits follows as the audience tries to figure out who is the cat and who is the mouse.

The official trailer can be viewed here.



  • Bad People Abuse Animals: The first sign that Holly isn't what she seems. A rat skitters into her cage, and she gives a girly shriek-and then beats it to a bloody pulp with her foot.
  • Being Tortured Makes You Evil: Holly's time in the cage turned her into a worse monster than Seth ever was. Symbolically enough, she's now keeping a barely alive Seth in a cage in her basement.
  • Beneath the Mask: Seth is outwardly a meek Nice Guy helping out at an animal shelter, inwardly an obsessive Stalker with a Crush. Holly is outwardly a waitress with her life together, when she's really The Sociopath and a Serial Killer, having got her start murdering her best friend after finding out her boyfriend was cheating on her with Claire.
  • Cute and Psycho: Holly.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Holly. Even while locked up, starving and freezing, she refuses to be a lapdog.
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  • Downer Ending: Holly escapes captivity, and seemingly returns to her life, even publishing a book - and then finds out Eric is still cheating on her. Then we find out that Seth is alive, but is kept caged by Holly, who tortures him whenever her murderous impulses rise up again.
  • Fanservice: Holly was in her underwear when she was kidnapped, and she stays that way for most of the movie.
  • Fingore: This movie likes the trope almost as much as Black Swan. When Holly claws at the lock on her cage, it bends her fingernail back, ripping it down to the quick. Then she yanks it completely off. It's also her chosen method for making Seth prove he loves her. She takes "love is sacrifice" very, very literally. Might be a habit of hers, as when we see Seth in his cage in the final scene, the hand gripping the bars has lost at least one other finger.
  • Girl in a Box: After drugging Holly, Seth transports her to the cage under the animal shelter in a cardboard box.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Seth kidnapped Holly in hopes of "saving" her, making her fall in love with him, and getting rid of her murderous impulses which he succeeds in at the end of the film. His reward is to have a Fate Worse than Death by serving as a living stress ball for Holly to use whenever the desire to kill appears.
  • Hannibal Lecture: Holly derides Seth's attempts to control her, gives his criticism of her definition of love a return volley and picks apart his obsession with her.
  • He Knows Too Much: Poor, poor Nate.
  • Hourglass Plot: The mantle of "pet" changes hands.
  • Human Pet: Seth puts Holly inside a dog cage and treats her like an animal.
  • Interplay of Sex and Violence: After Seth kills Nate for her, Holly rubs his blood-covered hand over her mouth, then stuffs it between her legs and begs him to "make her warm".
  • It Gets Easier: The more you do it, the more you remember the parts you liked...
  • Jerkass: Eric. Whether it's cheating on Holly(even after they get back together), or physically attacking Seth.
  • Kevlard: Nate is so fat that he doesn't even notice Seth stabbing him until he looks down, then he just gets angry and throws him across the room.
  • Love at First Sight: Seth for Holly.
  • Macho Masochism: To prove a point, Holly slams her own face into the bars of her cage until her face is bleeding, and mocks Seth when he tries to stop her.
  • Mask of Sanity: Seth accuses Holly of this, saying that there are two of her: the one that everyone sees, and the one inside. He's right.
  • Mugging the Monster: Seth didn't realize Holly is a lot stronger and smarter than she seems.
  • Once More, with Clarity!: About halfway through the movie, we get a series of flashbacks that gives your perspective a full 180. Turns out Seth isn't the only one Holly is hiding things from.
  • Out, Damned Spot!: After killing Nate, Seth takes a long, rough shower, and later washes his hands compulsively after a police detective questions him.
  • Professor Guinea Pig: Seth tests the tranquilizer he eventually uses on Holly on himself to make sure it would keep her down long enough to transport her.
  • Sex Is Evil, and I Am Horny: Holly's first guess about why Seth kidnapped her.
    Holly: Is this some fucking religious thing? God told you to punish all the whores, something like that?
  • Stalker with a Crush: After meeting Holly briefly on a bus, Seth stalks her Instagram to ascertain interests, finds her workplace, sends her flowers, and follows her to a bar. It's not even clear if he actually knew her from high school and she forgot, or if he was just lying to have an excuse to talk to her.
  • Stepford Smiler: Holly is a Type II/III.
  • Talking to Themself: Holly with "Claire".
  • "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: Holly escapes confinement and is happily with Eric again. Seth is in a dog cage in a nearby warehouse, doing double duty as her soulmate and stress ball.


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