Wasted on the Young

DRAMA; 1hr 37min

STARRING: Oliver Ackland, Adelaide Clemens, Alex Russell

Face off: Clemens and Ackland

They’re loaded lookers with everything to live for, but the Melbourne private-school seniors in writer-director Ben C. Lucas’s slickly packaged melodrama are a mixed and unsavoury bag. Unsurprisingly, drugs and booze are running the show at a poor-little-rich-kids party in the glassy mansion of half-brothers Darren (Ackland) and Zack (Russell). And when naïve Xandrie (Clemens), who really fancies shy physics wiz Darren (Ackland), ends up in the clutches of Zack (Russell) and his gormless buddies, the repercussions come hard and fast.


Xandrie is gossiped about, of course, while Darren torments himself for not Being There for her and Zack, who could be Eric Bana’s lizardy son, goes into damage-control mode — or tries to. Wasted on the Young takes a disturbing slant on the sometimes-terrible cost of accountability and the morally bankrupt arrogance of entitlement in kids who have done nothing to deserve it. It overplays its dramatic hand in the closing act, but you have to admire both its darkly glossy style and an intuitive Clemens as a poignant and undeserving victim.