aka Ils (Original Title)
77 min., 2006
Written by David Moreau/Xavier Palud
Directed by David Moreau/Xavier Palud
My rating: ★★★★
The tension is great! But almost too long.
* * *
The story begins with a mother and daughter being “attacked,” then it turns to Clémentine (Olivia Bonamy) teaching a class. She then proceeds to go to her new home, where her man Lucas (Michaël Cohen) already is. The night is going great until someone, or something starts to terrorize them.
The idea and execution of the movie is extremely simple. The main cast is really only two people and they are trapped in a remote location. One would think that this would be a downfall and make the movie terrible. On the other hand, these are some of the strengths of it. Sometimes an overly complex story or plot makes a movie only partially enjoyable, but when you boil it down to one of the most basic fears, very little can get in the way of a good movie watching experience.
The acting is great from both of the main characters, but Olivia Bonamy is truly the standout. Her facial expressions are just great. Terror is easily conveyed through her eyes and body movements. Michael Cohen does a great job, but sometimes he seems to stumble, only to recover just as good before the glitch.
The only real problem is with the tension building. Tension can be a blessing or a curse. If you use too little, then no one cares what is going to happen. If you use too much, then people start to get bored of the tension and are begging for something, anything to happen. Very few movies can get the perfect balance of tension and release. This movie has great tension building, but then there just seems to be too much buildup. The payoff is completely worth the wait, but I can see people getting bored fast with the amount of buildup.
This is really a good movie, just be prepared for a lot of waiting, but when the shit hits the fan, there really is no letting up until the ending.
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