A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Serial killer with dirty fingernails.
Violence & Scariness
Slasher movie: lots of dead, dismembered, bloody bodies.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Girl masturbates in her bed, implied oral sex in a truck (with a severed head), blood makes girls' t-shirts cling to their bodies.
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Translated from French.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters smoke and drink.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this movie is not for children. It contains multiple horrific murders (by knives, axes, circular saws, and other sharp implements, as well as a shotgun), frightening and frequent jump scenes, a long shot of a girl in the shower, a girl's masturbation, a dead dog, drinking, smoking, cursing, an implied blow job (below a truck window frame) by a decapitated head. Lesbianism is associated with insanity. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Gruesome and knowingly derivative, HIGH TENSION delivers what it promises: bloody violence, nubile young bodies tense with pain and fear, and screaming victims. If you expect and want to see a peculiarly old-fashioned, low-budget ugliness, this self-serious movie is unsurprising but also quite aware of its ancestry.
Borrowing liberally from 1970s slasher movies by Tobe Hooper and Wes Craven, this film tacks an intriguing addition to standard horror conventions by showing Marie in a closet as she witnesses a slaying, a scene that suggests her responsibility as voyeur. A twist toward the end further challenges conventions and underlines the genre's illogical presumption that viewers take pleasure in observing pain. Making the pain almost too close -- with repeated jump scenes and uncomfortably close camerawork -- the movie doesn't grant much moral or visceral space.
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Our Editors Recommend
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