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Inside (A l'interieur) - Dimension Extreme Print E-mail
User Rating: / 37
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Written by Ray Casta   
Saturday, 26 April 2008

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

AKA: └ l'intÚrieur
Directed by: Alexandre Bustillo, Julien Maury
Written by: Alexandre Bustillo
Produced by: VÚrane FrÚdiani, Franck RibiŔre
Cinematography by: Laurent BarŔs
Editing by: Baxter
Special Effects by: Olivier Afonso, JÚrÚmy B. Caravita, Jacques-Olivier Molon
Music by: Franšois Eudes
Cast: BÚatrice Dalle, Alysson Paradis, Nathalie Roussel, Francois-Regis Marchasson, Jean-Baptiste Tabourin
Year: 2008
Country: France
Language: French
Color: Color
Runtime: 90 minutes



Video: NTSC R1
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 Anamorphic
Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1
Distributor: Dimension Extreme
Studio: Genius Products

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From time to time, diehard horror enthusiasts doubt the state in which the genre is in today.  Certain fans believe the genre is not as strong as it once was.  Others lose their faith in the genre and remain wary of the newest film releases, which plague their movie theaters and local video stores.  When there is doubt in American horror, there is always hope to be found in foreign horror.  Whether it is with the United Kingdom and their unique mix of horror comedy, the Asian wave of the supernatural, Australian outback terror, or French bloodbaths, there is consolation in seeking out the finest offerings from overseas to satisfy the most hardcore genre fans.  Every once and a while a film comes along and shatters any doubt you ever had in our beloved genre.  From France, Alexandre Bustillo's and Julien Maury's "Inside" is such a film.  Want to see your worst nightmare on celluloid?  Look no further than this cinematic tour de force, which reaches an uncomfortable intensity so extreme, you may even be tempted to take a ten to fifteen minute break just to run outside and get a breath of fresh air.

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com "Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

The screenplay, written by co-director Bustillo, follows the aftermath of a devastating car accident, which involved photojournalist Sarah (Alysson Paradis) and claimed the life of her loving husband.  This tragic loss leaves Sarah alone, grieving and pregnant on Christmas Eve in her cozy suburban French abode.  Depression sinks in, on this lonely and gloomy night.  Due in for labor on the following day, Sarah mopes around the house with all Christmas cheer gone.  When a mysterious woman (Beatrice Dalle, known only in the end credits as Le Femme) taunts her from an outside window, Sarah has no idea what unspeakable horror awaits her.  Disguised in black clothing, the unknown woman breaks into Sarah's house over night armed with a large pair of sharp scissors.  Never did Sarah think she would have to fight for her life, as well as the life of her unborn child.  The psychotic who broke into her house is not much interested with hurting Sarah as she is in her baby.  Actually, the baby is all this lady wants.  She is prepared to terrorize, maim, butcher, and murder anyone and everyone in her way.  And boy does she ever!

In interviews, french filmmakers Bustillo and Maury explained how this feature film was largely influenced by John Carpenter and his seminal classic "Halloween".  It is rather easy to tell they were chiefly influenced with the best of the best in the genre.  Additionally inspired by the Italian giallo, Bustillo and Maury take sparse influences and homage and take them in their own personal direction.  The result is simply flawless.  The filmmaking, beautifully realized and sophisticated, marks an effectively stunning visual scheme and pattern: Vibrant lighting and its deep focus on grue; expansive hallway shots filmed in golden hue; shots of never-ending darkness, where a dark figure lurks in the shadows and may pop out at any given moment.  At all times, the camera impressively utilizes every inch of the atmosphere.  Watching "Inside" as a horror fan first, the lover of all cinema and filmmaking in me truly wishes every movie to look and sound as wonderfully as this.  Visually striking, the movie never becomes merely about style over substance.  It has spades of style, but it shares its flash with substance and it wears both on its multicolored coat.

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com "Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

In its claustrophobic minimalism (the bulk of the story takes place in a house and its upstairs bathroom), "Inside" evokes "Halloween" perfectly.  If this is the case, Dalle's psychopathic character plays "The Shape" character in the story and Paradis is the Laurie Strode.  And since the film is filmed like a gothic "dark fairy tale", Dalle is the Wicked Witch by all means (in the third act, her character actually resembles the "Oz" character), and as a pure and innocent character, Sarah is the Dorothy in the piece.  The main difference between this film and the other is there is no yellow brick road.  On the contrary, the road in which the "Inside" directors take us on is bloodstained gushing red.  If you consider yourself a gorehound in any way, shape or form, you owe it to yourself to watch this amazing film.  Even though part of me wants to tell you all of the detailed scenes of bloodletting and carnage, the other part of me wants you to witness each insanely gruesome shock on your own.  Believe the hype on this bad boy, folks: you need to see it to believe it.  Oh yes, there will be blood.  Everywhere.  You will see every spray of it, every spurt and every droplet.  Without question, "Inside" is a gorehound's wet dream.

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

Once the violent onslaught begins, the viewer, along with the protagonist is in immediate danger.  There is not a "safe" moment throughout the film.  Just when you think the coast is clear, Le Femme pops up out of nowhere to inject fear and terror into our hearts and minds.  I personally haven't been as shaken up by a foreign feature since Gaspar Noe's "Irreversible" in 2002.  Surely, Bustillo and Maury's superb work deserves a special spot on the top of the list in French cinema.  This film significantly marks the arrival of two equally talented directors who take no prisoners and pull no punches in their nightmarish vision of good vs. evil.  The story here closely resembles a lurid headline pulled from the newspapers.  Sadly, there have been true life cases where crazed, psychopathic women unable to have a child on their own have violently attacked pregnant women not much unlike the events portrayed here in the film.  Dalle's performance as the maniacal attacker is so amazingly convincing, viewers truly believe it to be reality unfolding.  It's scary to think someone could be this downright crazed and homicidal in their quest of a baby, but there are people willing to kill to have a child.  In Sarah's case, Paradis does a fine job in portraying a person willing to kill for their child.  Her determination to survive is emotionally draining.

On account of BÚatrice Dalle and Alysson Paradis, Bustillo's intelligent screenplay compares and contrasts their characters.  Sarah and the Wicked Witch character are brought to an empathetic level at the conclusion when both of them are committing acts of violence.  We are invested in both of them, and we are under the definite impression they will stop at virtually nothing to get what they want.  You have an innocent main character in Sarah, who lost her husband to a fatal car crash.  The baby survived and she is about to give birth to it.  Then, you have the Wicked Witch; the mysterious woman who stalks and slashes in genuine Shape fashion and vows to steal this unborn child.  How did she come to be so bitter and determined in her quest?  The answer is uncovered at the right time, without being too talky or distracting.  It actually gives the viewer a chance to stop and think about the characters for the first time throughout the bloody reign of terror.  In the Wicked Witch's case, the viewer is shown the futility of madness and how utter determination can bring a human being to commit such horrible acts against others.

Destined for cult classic status, "Inside" is the most traumatic cinematic event in recent memory.  A horror work, which combines every element to make it a great accomplishment.  It oozes atmosphere and style.  It oozes gore and splatter.  In addition to these two very important factors, it takes a cue from John Carpenter's best fright films and manages to actually fright and shock at the same time.  Hell, if Roman Polanski's chiller "Rosemary's Baby" scared pregnant women when it hit theaters in 1968, only God knows how scared (not to mention, offended) they would be with this demented French puppy.  I want to bow down and thank France for their glorious gift to us; the film which definitely cancels any doubt I've ever had in my mind that creativity is gone in these times.  I want to thank directors Bustillo and Maury for taking me on a nauseating, pulse-pounding rollercoaster of brutality and chaos.  Savagely brutal and gleefully sadistic, "Inside" appropriately exemplifies the word "visceral", and sets the standard for slashers to come.

 SUPPLEMENTAL MATERIAL:

-"Making of Inside" Documentary
-Theatrical trailer / other trailers

As I've read, a commentary track is featured on the region 2 French release. Unfortunately enough, on the North American release, it is not featured by Genuis Products. That is not to say we are left completely unfulfilled. On the Dimension Extreme uncut presentation of the film, a documentary "The Making of Inside" is included. While it runs for 51 minutes, fans will get their money's worth as it discusses the film's production at length. Nothing is left unsaid about the production, and you really realize how incredibly passionate the filmmakers and crew were at making this movie. It feels like it is "their" baby, and they take great pride and care in knowing that they all have a hand in making it. Good stuff. Fans should definitely enjoy it, as I certainly did. The movie's decent theatrical trailer is included - as well as trailers for other DVD releases, such as "Diary of the Dead", "Storm Warning", and "The Mist". Attention all gorehounds, cinema enthusiasts, genre lovers everywhere! Do yourself a favor, and add this wonderful DVD release to your collections!

  RATING:
VIDEO: 1.85:1 Anamorphic 1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed CinemaNo Skull - Severed Cinema
AUDIO: Dolby Digital 5.1 1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed CinemaNo Skull - Severed Cinema
DVD: Dimension Extreme 1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed CinemaNo Skull - Severed Cinema
MOVIE: "Inside" 1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed Cinema1 Skull - Severed Cinema

 

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

"Inside" (└ l'intÚrieur) - Click here to enlarge image - www.severed-cinema.com

 

Comments
Add New Search
Chris Mayo     |SAdministrator |2008-04-26 14:10:05
Your correlation between this and the "Wizard of Oz" is spot on. La
femme is definitely akin to the Wicked Witch.
tutsak19   |88.243.229.xxx |2008-05-10 19:46:57
sŘper
Andarson     |71.112.35.xxx |2008-05-14 01:54:37
You sure as hell got more enjoyment out of the film then I did, as a long time
fan of giallo cinema and italian gore, I found the film extremely flat looking,
unextraordinary and pointless. The comparisons and contrasts between characters
arre weak and don't maeasure to say...Tenebre's main character and his confusion
between the book's murders and the murder's that happened...that was
interesting. I hated it with a passion. well written review ray though, even if
I disagree with it completely. If you get around to reading this, bother me on
RT okay?
-andarson (posting under PBF now...)
norman   |151.203.43.xxx |2008-05-25 11:20:05
Watched it just last evening and was astounded by it's sheer brilliance and
artfulness. The amazing soundtrack also added a whole other dimension of
creepiness and dread.

I've been quite disappointed with contemporary horror
films that get built up to be the next Exorcist only to be let down when I
finally screen it, but this is one film that lives up to the hype. Very excited
to see what comes next from these talented filmakers.
Ray Casta     |72.178.135.xxx |2010-01-31 01:48:04
Thanks for the comments.

I plan on watching this flick again soon. I doubt
it losing any of its initial charm it had on me when I originally saw/reviewed
it. It's one of the best genre movies of the decade, as far as I'm concered.
But it's hard, film wise, to compare INSIDE to, say, something like TENEBRE. I
compare it to Argento in a heartbeat, by simply the way it was filmed and shot.
It just reminded me of Italian giallo mixed with French horror sensibilities.
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