AKA: Haute Tension, Switchblade Romance
Directed by: Alexandre Aja
Starring: Cecile de France (Marie), Maiwenn (Alex), Philippe Nahon (Killer)
Country: France, European Cinema
Language: French (English Subtitles)
Genres: Gore-Gruesome, Kidnapping, Lesbian, Revenge, Violence against Men, Sexual-Violence against Women
Plot – Spoilers:
A couple of French girls, Marie and Alex, drive to Alex’s parents’ place in the country to study over the weekend for some law-related exam. It’s a friendly countryside home and having reached late in the night, the girls decide to crash.
Marie is a little edgy having suffered a scary dream during the drive and shuffles around for a bit before deciding to masturbate herself to sleep. She is roused from her reverie by noises downstairs and wakes to see Alex’s Dad being brutally killed by a huge man. From here begins long sequences of tension as the Killer slaughters members of the family and kidnaps Alex.
The tension is quite good, but the Dad’s brutal murder is probably the most inventive bit in the movie. Stuffing a guy’s head through the stair rails and knocking it off his torso with a heavy table is quite a neat thing for a killer to do.
Unfortunately, a couple of ridiculous things take the sheen off Haute Tension, like Marie while driving having bat vision to see the killer tauntingly holding out the bullets. Or, where the goddamn truck came from, unless Marie drove it herself there which itself opens out more questions. Ignore stuff like this and Haute Tension is a good watch.