Four interwoven stories that occur on Halloween: An everyday high school principal has a secret life as a serial killer; a college virgin might have just met the one guy for her; a group of teenagers pull a mean prank; a woman who loathes the night has to contend with her holiday-obsessed husband.
In the 1980s, college student Samantha Hughes takes a strange babysitting job that coincides with a full lunar eclipse. She slowly realizes her clients harbor a terrifying secret; they plan to use her in a satanic ritual.
A group of friends whose leisurely Mexican holiday takes a turn for the worse when they, along with a fellow tourist embark on a remote archaeological dig in the jungle, where something evil lives among the ruins.
A loan officer who evicts an old woman from her home finds herself the recipient of a supernatural curse. Desperate, she turns to a seer to try and save her soul, while evil forces work to push her to a breaking point.
Four months before Christmas, Sarah and Matthieu Scarangelo were in a car crash, of which Sarah and her unborn baby were the only survivors. On Christmas Eve, Sarah stays home alone, where she grieves her husband and prepares to go to the hospital the next morning for the delivery. As night falls, a woman knocks on Sarah's door asking to use the phone. When she refuses, the woman reveals that she knows Sarah and tries to force her way in. Sarah calls the police; they inspect the home and determine the woman has left, but promise to keep watch over Sarah through the night. The woman returns and tries to take Sarah's unborn child, but Sarah locks herself in the bathroom. The strange woman torments Sarah through the night and kills all who try help her. Written by
À L'Intérieur - the geometry of a microbudget wonder!
The best reassurance that the Hellraiser remake is in good hands, is actually watching Alexandre Bustillo and Julien Maury's first movie. Once the credits roll, it becomes very clear why the team behind À L'Intérieur comes with Clive Barker's seal of approval.
The signs were on the wall. If Haute Tension and Scheitan were not enough proof that France is the epicentre of euro horror right now, this one just hammers the point home effortlessly. Taking a very simple premise (pregnant woman attacked by maniac woman in her house), the same awareness of scope and budget that made Saw effective, GALLONS of blood and a European flair for atmosphere, À L'Intérieur is simultaneously emotionally draining and bruising. The story takes place inside a house and that's it. It's more like three rooms actually. Very straight-forward and simple. That's called budget-awareness Asylum. And yes, it's very short too, clocking at a measly 78 minutes (5 of which are the credits). But, frankly, it couldn't have been anymore. It was enough to leave me exhausted.
There are easily more gory or more disturbing movies out there, but I can say that À L'Intérieur left me satisfied in both departments. There's something disturbing about pregnant women in peril and combined with scissors, exploding heads, custom built flame throwers and stabbing in the balls, it's gore heaven with the occasional cringe-worthy moment.
The violence is relentless and numbing. The splatter, of the same spraying variety that made Haute Tension's first half so beautiful. A particular scene of blood spraying across a wall would make Dario Argento and fans of Tenebre proud. Although, unlike HT, there are no gimmicks and ridiculous twists here. What makes À L'Intérieur so effective by comparison is that the violence piles up and leads to a climactic finale. And the final image is haunting beyond words...
Some people might be eager to dismiss it as torture porn, a hack term often thrown around these days. It might be so. But unlike rubbish like Hostel, it's packed with atmosphere, tension and has its heart set in all the right places. In the end of the day it's a horror movie. If some people want their horror watered-down, harmless and PG-13, the big studios will have something in store for them. À L'Intérieur is for the rest of us blood-hounds.
Anyways, grab it if you can find it. It just goes to show what you can do with a relatively small budget and DV technology.
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