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High Tension (2003)

Haute tension (original title)
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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
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3,519 ( 1,192)
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.

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

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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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:

€2,200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$246,140 (Italy), 10 June 2005

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,897,705, 12 June 2005, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$3,681,066
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Alexandre Films,EuropaCorp See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD) | (re-cut) | (edited)

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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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cécile de France did most of the stunt driving during the car chase through the woods. See more »

Goofs

The dog disappears from shot after it has been killed. 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.
See more »

Connections

References The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974) See more »

Soundtracks

Sarà Perché Ti Amo
Performed by Ricchi e Poveri
(Dario Farina / Enzo Ghiazzi / Daniela Pace)
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
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Irregular but intriguing
16 July 2006 | by AgnelinSee all my reviews

This film seems to me to lack balance between the combination of elements that it blends together: the thriller-suspense factor, the gore, and the "surprise" factor. It is a very irregular film, but it still boasts good style and good manners in atmosphere-building, even if it doesn't really live up to meet the expectations, at least for me.

The story goes about Marie and Alexia, best friends who drive up to Alexia's parents' countryside house, hoping to find some peace for studying. Instead, they'll have to fight a psychopathic killer in a macabre cat-and-mouse game.

The best part, in my opinion, is the mise-en-scene and the introduction of the characters and the storyline. Everything in those first sequences tells us that something horrible is going to happen, not only because we already know that we're watching a horror film. The dusty road, the scorching weather, the big corn fields... the real feel of a horror story scene is there. It increases with the night scenes, the shots of the house, the staircase, the corridors. The gloominess and inherent darkness of the place and the quiet surroundings perfectly do their job of preparing us for what's to come.

The story-telling loses steam after this part. Not being a big fan of gore, I didn't really care for the bloody murder scenes, but I'm sure that they'll be appreciated by many -they're rather truculent and well filmed. The duel between Marie and the killer didn't really work for me; in fact, I found it a little boring. On the whole, I thought the story was unoriginal and predictable, but, contrary to what many say, I don't think it's deceitful -I didn't feel that the director cheats on the audience with the ending. (I won't elaborate on this so as not to spoil the film for those who want to see it).

I have mixed feelings about "High Tension". On the one hand, for me, it is ineffective as a thriller, and flawed as an exercise of story-telling. On the other, however, the murky atmosphere and the darkness of the story and of its subtleties stuck with me for a while after seeing the film. I wouldn't watch it again, but I understand why many like it so much.


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