(2003)

Critic Reviews

42

Metascore

Based on 30 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
75
ReelViews
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.
60
Variety
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.
60
Village Voice
Manages--before faltering under the weight of its own pretensions--to be pretty scary.
60
L.A. Weekly
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.
50
The A.V. Club
Though staged with technical skill and unflinching brutality, it's an awfully familiar-looking slaughter filled with moments on loan from other movies.
42
Entertainment Weekly
The latest reshuffling of "Chainsaw" tropes.
40
Dallas Observer
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.
40
That outrageous third-act reveal proves to be a major deal-breaker.
25
Serial killing and other insanity in the French countryside, with ineptly dubbed English dialogue.
10
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.

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