Ils (2006) - David Moreau, Xavier Palud French with subs

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Clementine, is a young French teacher, who has recently to a remote country house in Romania with her boyfriend, Lucas. In the middle of the night she is awoken by noises from outside, she wakes up Lucas and together they go down to see what it is and soon find they're not alone inside the house....

Hmmn, I do have quite a few issues with the film, primarily the fact that I didn't find it scary.

It is quite well filmed in that the directors have got all the right shots in place, the suitably subdued music punctuated by beats of sudden action that should work, But it doesn't. The story is so slight to be non-existent so it's up to the film to build a particular sustained atmosphere of tension or fear and it just doesn't because a) the assailants are not really fleshed out or given anything really terrifying to do b) it relies too much on the main characters behaving unrealistically or stupidly. Normally this isn't an issue, in Eden Lake for instance the couple are extremely stupid but it had the feral chav-youth front and centre as the threat; the fear of youth message running through it and it had a semi-realism to it that this low budget house-invasion with it's flickering flash-lights and shadows running across the background and/or standing in the centre of a dark room waiting for the scared woman to blindly walk into, lacks.

Olivia Bonamy does what's expected as she runs around in her underwear but both she and the Lucas character are paper-thin middle class clichés, not helped by the fact they only really interact with each other in the film. There's really no one else, she's a teacher and he's a writer and I have no idea about anything else about them and don't really care what happens to them. The final reveal is laughable and ultimately creates more questions than answers, smacking of some faux-high brow attempt to attach some greater meaning or significance to the events preceding it. It's not long at 80 minutes but that doesn't mean it wasn't a boring watch where I found myself waiting for something non-stupid to happen.

Needless to say I was disappointed.

4/10

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