Directed by Coralie Forgeat
Luxurious in its first minutes and viciously brutal in the remaining time, “Revenge” is a heavy, breathtaking ride that will make fans of horror/action genre rub their hands with glee.
The film, a product from the mind of newcomer Coralie Forgeat, thrives with devoted performances by Matilda Kutz, Kevin Janssens, Vincent Colombe, and Guillaume Bouchede, who were able to convey all the distress, trauma, alertness, and resentment required to make the film succeed. Other fundamental aspects include the intermittence of Rob's disturbing score, which keeps alternating with suspenseful silences, and the super sharp cinematography by Robrecht Heyvaert, which comes filled with impressive close-ups and medium-range shots. The quality of the editing, carefully handled by Forgeat, Bruno Safar, and Jerome Eltabet, is especially noticeable in Jennifer's nightmares sequences.
The plot is very simple and direct, yet, the way it was executed turns the film into one of the biggest blood soaking baths of the year. The sculptural Jennifer (Kutz), an American socialite, follows her wealthy French lover Richard (Janssens), a married man, in his annual hunting trip to the desert, where he retains a house. Her plan was to stay for two days with her sweetheart before the hunting begins. However, Richard's friends, Stan (Colombe) and Dimitri (Bouchede), arrive one day earlier than expected, getting utterly fascinated with Jennifer’s beauty. When Richard leaves the site for just a couple of hours, the uncontrollable Stan doesn’t resist his sexual impetus and rapes her, having the impassive Dimitri, an avid marshmallow-eater, ignoring the scene.
Refusing money as a compensation for the traumatic experience and threatening Richard, Jen is pushed off from a cliff after trying to escape the three madmen. Although gravely wounded with a tree branch stuck into her belly, she survives and considers no other option rather than revenge.
Memorable scenes include Jennifer’s unimaginable beer-brand tattoo made under the effect of a hallucinogenic drug, several painful attempts of taking out external objects from inside their bodies, and the thrilling final cat-and-mouse game around the house’s narrow hallways.
Overwhelming emotions and feminist prowess are drawn from the visceral, agonizing, and often-cartoonish images that hold this sick n' ferocious film together. Even if excessively sanguinary, it runs at a dazzling pace and boasts impeccably mounted episodes.