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High Tension(Haute tension)

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France, Italy, Romania · 2003
Rated R · 1h 30m
Director Alexandre Aja
Starring Cécile de France, Maïwenn, Philippe Nahon, Andrei Finti
Genre Horror, Thriller, Mystery

Alexia travels with her friend Marie to spend a couple of days with her family in their farm in the country. They arrive late and they are welcomed by Alexia's father. Late in the night, a sadistic and sick killer breaks into the farmhouse, slaughters Alexia's family--including their dog--and kidnaps Alexia. Marie hides from the criminal and tries to help the hysterical and frightened Alexia, chase the maniac, and disclose his identity in the end.

Stream High Tension

What are people saying?

What are critics saying?


Washington Post by Desson Thomson

Such a bizarre movie that it has completely occupied my thinking for days. Not because it's a good movie, mind you. It's more like the equivalent of a botched tooth extraction with a coat hanger. Some bloody shard remains stuck in an inflamed, fleshy part of my psyche, and it's going to take some serious tugging and tearing to root it out.


L.A. Weekly by Ernest Hardy

While the acting is fine and the direction accomplished, the real stars of the film are editor Baxter and cinematographer Maxime Alexandre. Forfeiting a gold star is whoever haphazardly dubbed the film, simply giving up about halfway through.


ReelViews by James Berardinelli

The film revels in blood and gore, but this is not just a run-of-the-mill splatter film. There's a lot of intelligence in both the script and in Alexandre Aja's direction.


The A.V. Club by Keith Phipps

Though staged with technical skill and unflinching brutality, it's an awfully familiar-looking slaughter filled with moments on loan from other movies.


Variety by Lisa Nesselson

Deftly juggles gore and suspense, and punchline holds an intellectual frisson or two for fans of gender-role speculation, but basically this is one more horror pic on the distinguished road already trodden by "Texas Chain Saw Massacre," "Maniac" and the like.


Dallas Observer by Luke Y. Thompson

High Tension often feels like a ’70s exploitation movie in the best sense; unfortunately, the ending is so bad that it mars everything that comes before.

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