REVENGE is next on the IMDb list of 50 best movies of 2018. So, today, I will focus on this adventure thriller, especially when I watched it only last night, although its trailer I saw long ago, REVENGE did not attract me to watch it on cinema.
It is the full-length directorial debut of the French Coralie Fargeat, a sort of thriller about survival in extreme conditions and under the influence of the most severe external factors. The debut was successful; it captivates the viewers' attention, but it is not without flaws. With her work, Coralie Fargeat breaks gender stereotypes and does an excellent job with genre commitments.
Just when you thought rape-revenge movies had nothing left to say (if they even had anything to say in the first place), along comes Revenge — which transcends mere cleverness with a thoughtful, challenging approach to a worn-out concept.
The trailer for the film once provoked a strong reaction in the network, mainly among the stronger sex, saying that it is female version of Rambo and other comments, but after watching REVENGE, it seemed to me that there was a well-planned marketing move to get attention to a film that was not rich in advertising.
Yes, there is a girl walking in a bathing suit, she loves to dance and sparkle to the men, but nothing special that we have not seen before. And the situation itself does not focus on any feminist hints, besides the fact that viewers themselves have warmed up an argument that is baseless, at least in the context of this particular film.
REVENGE - Official Trailer - Video credit: youtube.com
The Short Story Of The Movie
The plot of the REVENGE tells about a simple girl named Jennifer (Matilda Anna Ingrid Lutz), who once decides to have a good time with her French guy Richard (Kevin Janssens). To do this, they rent a small house with a swimming pool in the backyard. Plans for the main character begin to crumble when friends look over her boyfriend, who have gathered to hunt with him.
Jennifer is upset, and she has absolutely no control over her actions. At some point, she decides to start flirting with one of her lover's friends to provoke jealousy in him. Jennifer did not know that by her actions she will start a conflict that would escalate into a real war.
Alcohol, music, and the main heroine has already become a victim of rape. From this begins the main action of REVENGE. Threatening to tell everyone about what happened, she turns into an object of hunting and tries to escape in the desert hot from the sun.
Rape-revenge films - REVENGE - Photo credit: twitter.com
The Content Of The Movie
REVENGE is beautiful in its absurdity, where there is not an ounce of realism, but rather hyper cruelty and spectacle for the sake of entertainment.
In terms of dynamics, REVENGE is a rather slow film; there is no rapid action, but at the same time the film really catches and does not seem monotonous at all. In many ways, this effect is achieved it is interesting to observe the heroine, and, willy-nilly, the viewer worry about Jen looking at the challenge that fell on a poor girl.
There is a lot of controversy in the film. They are in such abundant quantities that almost every 10 minutes a smile involuntarily stretches. However, if you move away from reality, then you can look at the massacre - I love these genres.
The only thing I don’t like is that in the heroes there are about 12 liters of blood, which is poured in liters and kilometers, and then the characters continue to act normally.
Action thriller REVENGE review - Photo credit: imdb.com
How much blood can a person let out of himself and stay on his feet? Judging by what we saw here, everyone who was bleeding, has at least 10-15 liters of blood (not less), because they spray it all around. A lot of blood. Too much, and when, such as, the hunters are following the bloody trail of their prey, it seems that the victim was carrying full buckets of blood and she, like water, splashed out on the sand!
Okay, a drop or a thin current, so no - here everything is as if every trace represented at least half a glass of spilled liquid!
The weapons of hunters cause questions too. I don’t know who they hunt in the desert (maybe an elephant), but instead of the usual rifles, everyone has a hefty shotgun and with a target! I have never seen a drowned man, and even the next morning after he drowned, but honestly I can’t believe that the face of the deceased person can so swell up in the night (literally in a few hours).
Rape-revenge film REVENGE - Photo credit: twitter.com
Maybe the director went through a survival school and knows what he is showing, or he was a great boy scout, but it’s strange to see a man who lost a lot of blood (judged by the same footprints), already the next day, not just walking but running like a horse covering many kilometers distance and on his foot.
Alcohol and immoral behavior will not bring to the good - this is the main moral of the film telling about the unfortunate girl who fell victim to three men, to one of them she even had some feelings.
Undoubtedly, a recognizable subgenre: the offended and humiliated weak sex takes revenge on the stronger sex, and takes revenge on blood. The first half of the film is violence against her; the second half is violence from her side, and it is stupid and inconceivably cruel revenge.
50 best movies of 2018 - REVENGE - Photo credit: twipu.com
One of the first advantages of the film is its swiftness - everything happens without too much chewing and staying in one spot.
Although, if you think about it, there is something else in this picture, besides revenge and a huge amount of blood - the revealing theme of gender inequality. From the beginning, we see Jen as such a sacrifice of male arrogance, and the arrogance of the representatives of the strong sex is presented deliberately underlined, as if trying to say - well, the guys themselves were struggling for what they deserved. Further along the plot, the theme of male chauvinism only intensifies. Perhaps that is why the massacre, which the main character will eventually arrange, is generally perceived as normal, as logically following from earlier events.
UniFrance Films REVENGE - Photo credit: imdb.com
The Personages Of The Movie
A completely typical set of characters: a married magnate, a sexy blonde, and a magnate's friends gather in a house somewhere in a canyon and begins to hang out.
Cute from all sides and, clearly far from being the most modest girl, arrives, although more precisely she arrives with a married boyfriend in a posh lonely house right in the middle of a picturesque desert. It is clear that his girlfriend is not to wash clothes and make breakfast. And it seems that the couple has a romantic idyll when suddenly the next morning two travelers with guns come to visit them. All three men are colleagues and at the same time hunting partners, and two of them arrived a little earlier than the agreed time.
The uncomplicated storyline that leads the viewer to a tense spectacle in which a fragile girl confronted three men. True, one of them - deadhead and loser with over growing fat; the second is stupid and too self-confident in his "stunning" appearance, and the third is a simple double of Aaron Eckhart with a deep hole on his chin.
Three wealthy middle-aged men, each of whom has families, come together for an annual hunt in a desert canyon. In this way, they let off steam and assert themselves as men. Friends name is Stan (Vincent Colombe) and Dimitri (Guillaume Bouchède).
Matilda Anna Ingrid Lutz and Kevin Janssens in REVENGE - Photo credit: filmertek.blog.hu
In almost every collision of the main characters, the derogatory attitude of men towards women looks underlined. Like, you are a woman, which means weak and stupid, now I will teach you. And the girl, in turn, proves that you underestimate me, and I know how to bite.
The Technical Side Of The Movie
There are no complaints about the technical side of the picture. The picture is juicy; I adore the view of desert landscapes - wild endlessness. Camera work is high quality - angles of shooting delight us by their ingenuity. It is worth noting that there is the minimum number of dialogues and the story focuses precisely on the visual part, which, by the way, is insanely good. The staging of individual scenes, camera fly outs - all this deserves compliments.
For what it is worth praising REVENGE? It is for the richness of the frame. There is a lot of mark-ups, which creates a certain effect of a beautiful picture, and this film takes advantage of it. Like a yellow-brown lifeless desert should merge into a monotonous panel, but the director manages to animate the picture due to bright inserts. The glances through colored glass, bright pink Jen earrings, red lollipop in her hands, blue water in the pool, bright yellow Jen dress - it all spreads with a palette as if the child takes coloring in his hands and begins to paint with colored felt-tip pens.
UniFrance Films REVENGE - Photo credit: cszn83.blogspot.com
Special mention deserves attention to trifles - there were very short artistic sketches very relevant, such as an ant on a bitten apple, or, again, an ant under drops of blood. It looked cool and gave a certain detachment to an already non-sentimental picture.
The makeup and other effects also cause good impressions. The moments with repeated awakenings of the heroine after a drug intoxication surprise with their expression. Cruelty here is not for cruelty, but rather as a necessary measure.
The film as I mentioned is not filled with dialogues, but it does not spoil the impression - it is diluted with excellent and timely musical accompaniment, giving the film the necessary atmosphere and slow dynamics.
Revenge, Final Fight Scene - Video credit: youtube.com
The Collective Work Of The Actors
The film consists of three actors. That is, of the four actually. In the literal sense of the word. And I do not like such films, a,s a rule they are boring and necessary. But! This film is an exception! Though blunders here are a wagon and a small truck.
The cast is absolutely new for me, not a single familiar face. But it is even better; it is not necessary to foresee ahead of time the actions of the actors.
The actors play beautifully; they deserve their honorarium fully. They are convincing in their roles, fear, anger, confusion - everything we see here. Anger, screams of pain - all very naturalistic.
I want to mention the actress. Matilda Anna Ingrid Luts undoubtedly embellished the film and very organically fit into the desired image of the strongest and most independent girl, who at the same time remains attractive even being smeared in mud and blood and with a shotgun at the ready. A very sweet, pretty girl who did a good job with her role as a victim seeking revenge.
REVENGE review - Photo credit: filmanias.tv
With all her heart feeling the offended Jennifer, Matilda puts into her game the maximum of soul and effort, thanks to which the vengeance of her heroine looks both frightening and motivated, and very realistic.
I fell in love with the actress, for this, probably, I added a couple of extra points.
On The Final Note
How much revenge was committed in the entire bloody history of restless humanity? Revenge is a feeling in our blood. And here we have a film about the same revenge.
REVENGE can be safely attributed to category B. The existing shortcomings do not spoil the impression of what we see; the film keeps in suspense and, in general, coping with its task, leaving positive emotions from watching, despite the far from the cheerful theme.
The film can be called an action thriller with fantasy elements. The film is not like the others. The irony, the grotesque, the surprise, and the fantastic nature of the film takes consciousness to other levels of understanding of reality.
Action thriller REVENGE - Photo credit: twitter.com
Therefore, if you at least roughly imagine the direction of the film, and for you, this is not something repulsive, then watching can be fun enough. Before us is an interesting representative of the thriller genre, and even the European sample.
Revenge won't be an experience every viewer can handle, but as a piece of extreme horror, it's an intelligent and flashy debut.
My rating: 8.0/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 92/100
Critics average: 55/100
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