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High Tension (2003)

Haute tension (original title)
R | | Horror | 10 June 2005 (USA)
Trailer
1:46 | Trailer
Best friends Marie and Alexia decide to spend a quiet weekend at Alexia's parents' secluded farmhouse. But on the night of their arrival, the girls' idyllic getaway turns into an endless night of horror.

Director:

Alexandre Aja
Reviews
Popularity
2,909 ( 91)
6 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Cécile de France ... Marie (as Cécile De France)
Maïwenn ... Alexia
Philippe Nahon ... Le tueur
Franck Khalfoun ... Jimmy
Andrei Finti ... Père Alex
Oana Pellea ... Mère Alex
Marco Claudiu Pascu Marco Claudiu Pascu ... Tom
Jean-Claude de Goros Jean-Claude de Goros ... Capitaine Gendarmerie
Bogdan Uritescu Bogdan Uritescu ... Gendarme
Gabriel Spahiu ... Homme voiture
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Storyline

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. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Hearts will bleed. See more »

Genres:

Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for graphic bloody killings, terror, sexual content and language. | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cécile de France trained with a Thai boxer to get in shape for her physically demanding role. See more »

Goofs

When the car driver is attacked near the end, Alex is showered in blood, including her face and teeth. In the next scenes, her teeth are perfectly white and the blood has dried very quickly. See more »

Quotes

Alexia: The problem is, he's got a girlfriend he doesn't want to split up with.
Marie: Why are you so interested, then?
Alexia: Someone who's taken must be worth it. I'm skeptical of single guys.
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Alternate Versions

Lions Gate cut about 2 minutes for the US theatrical release to secure a "R" rating. The changes were:
  • Alex's father is graphically decapitated with a bookcase, his headless neck spraying blood. In the R-rated version, the initial killing is implicit rather than explicit, and later, during a flashback, his killing is gone.
  • The scene of the killer applying a concrete saw to the stomach of the man driving the car was edited shorter
  • When Alex's mother has her throat slashed, the scene is edited short; most of the arterial spurting, as the killer pulls back her head, is gone. The shot of her severed hand also is removed, leaving no indication of what exactly happened to her.
  • The scene where Marie strikes the killer's face in with the barbed wire post is shortened and less explicit; Marie hits the killer fewer times, and there are fewer details of the killer's wounds shown.
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Connections

References The Last House on the Left (1972) See more »

Soundtracks

Sarà Perché Ti Amo
Performed by Ricchi e Poveri
Written by Dario Farina, Daniele Pace, Luis Gómez Escolar and Enzo Ghinazzi
(c) Televis Ed. Musicali Srl
(c) Abrano Allione Ed. Musicali (represented by Warner Chappell Music France)
By kind permission of Universal Music Projets Spéciaux France
(p) 1981 BMG Entertainment
By kind permission of BMG France
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User Reviews

 
A very stylish, tense film, truly a suspense-thriller-horror
3 May 2005 | by Rich BSee all my reviews

Oh my god. Without a doubt I have not been affected by a movie this much since watching the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre when I was well under age and the movie was certainly more than dodgy. I couldn't sleep after watching that and was very uneasy, multiplied a gazillion times by the imagination of a kid. This certainly had a similar affect on me, it scared me and horrified me, it even surprised me more than any other movie has of late.

If you have any preconception about foreign cinema being weaker to Hollywood then you have hardly spent enough time watching foreign cinema and too much time engrossed in poor romantic flicks with Clooney et al. You really need to get out and grab some of that Japanese, Spanish and French cinema action. It's easily had and there's a lot to it, far better movies...anyway, I find myself digressing again.

From the outset this movie pitches itself as a hard horror, it isn't going to pull any punches and it's going to show you like it is, harrowing and horrific. That said, the story then turns to a slower pace and you find that it's mixing the suspenseful thriller in with the moments of full on horror, and it's done so well. Too well in fact, and watching the psychotic at work is sometimes shocking.

It rides a fine line between schlock horror and suspense horror, it manages to combine the two without falling into a complete gore flick. It is gory mind you, very gory. I was eating a couple of biscuits during the movie and I stopped until it was finished, even then I wasn't sure.

That's where this movies strength lies, it really pushes the boundaries of between those two types of movies but keeps its feet firmly in the suspense, and tension area. The film is exceedingly tense, and it's raised slowly to begin with, but creeps up at every set piece, and it's not long before the shocking and surprising final set piece is upon you. That in itself is terrifying, and as it unfolded on me I was stunned.

Part of me thinks that this movie could have done much better without all the horror, but I'm not sure that the film would have carried on the tension and suspense alone, it's the very presence of the horror that adds to and heightens the pressure.

A very stylish, tense film, truly a suspense-thriller-horror to be proud of from the French. Please Hollywood, don't remake it.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

France | Italy | Romania

Language:

French | English | Italian

Release Date:

10 June 2005 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

High Tension See more »

Filming Locations:

Romania See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

EUR2,200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,897,705, 12 June 2005

Gross USA:

$3,681,066

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$6,291,958
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (R-rated)

Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS (US version)| Dolby Digital (US version)| Dolby Digital EX (original version)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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