Director: Xavier Gens
Writer: Xavier Gens
Starring: Karina Testa, Aurelien Wiik, Patrick Ligardes
How I Watched It: Amazon Instant
Review By: Griff
Sorry that this wasn’t actually posted on Friday but my day job as a mild mannered IT guy has gotten the better of me lately. Hopefully all of my current projects will be finished in the next few weeks and I get back on track.
The French have had a bit of a horror revival over the past few years. They have been producing some of the more interesting and original entries into the genre. Movies like Inside, Martyrs, and High Tension have been pushing the boundaries of horror for the past several years. So when I saw Frontier(s) streaming on Amazon I figured it was time to give it a try.
Frontier(s) is a about a group of friends, Sami, Alex, Tom, Farid, and Yasmine, who decide to take advantage of the political climate in Paris. An extreme right wing candidate has just been elected and the people have started rioting. Amongst all the confusion the group decides to pull off a robbery, get some fast cash, and get out of Paris.
Things don’t go as planned however. Sami is shot during the heist. His sister Yasmine demands that they he be taken to the hospital. The group decides to split up. Tom and Farid take off in one car with the money and are supposed to find some lodgings outside of town for the night. Alex and Yasmine decide to take Sami to the hospital and then meet up with the other two members of the group later.
Tom and Farid find a small hotel far away from the city and decide to hold up there and wait for the rest of the group. The hotel is run by two women Gilberte and Klaudia who tell the men that they can stay in the hotel for free. The two men phone Alex and Yasmine who are on their way from the hospital and tell them their location. (Sami, sadly, does not make it.) While they are waiting they are seduced by Gilberte and Klaudia. After a little romp in the sack they invite Tom and Farid to have dinner with them. Also at the dinner is Goetz the brother of the two women and their mother who is an invalid. It becomes apparent during the meal that something isn’t right and Tom and Farid decide to leave. Before they can go however, they are attacked by the family.
Tom and Farid manage to escape and attempt to flee by car but Goetz catches up to them and runs them off the road. They fall into a mine shaft and are forced to try and find their way out. Tom is soon recaptured by the family and Farid is left wandering the mines.
Alex and Yasmine also arrive at the house and are quickly captured by the family as well. Now the friends must find a way to escape before they are all killed by this deranged family.
You can say this for Frontier(s), fans of gore will not be disappointed. Other than that, the movie was a bit of a let down. It starts off fairly interesting and then devolves into a pretty cliche horror movie.
Characters are underdeveloped and you never really get to know or care about any of them before they are killed off. The entire 2nd and 3rd act of this movie is really just bits and pieces taken from other horror films. There is a dinner scene taken straight from Texas Chainsaw Massacre, A shotgun to the head that rings of Maniac, and a little Tendon trimming straight from Pet Semetary or Hostel. Throw in a little bit of the Hills have Eyes and you have a good idea of what you are getting here. Taking from other films doesn’t make Frontier(s) bad. Tarantino borrows from other films all the time with great success. What makes this movie bad is that it doesn’t do anything original. It doesn’t put a new spin on anything. It just uses scenes from other films to create a movie. The result is a pretty unoriginal film that doesn’t deliver the goods.
Frontier(s) does have plenty of gore so if that’s your thing you may not be disappointed but I would suggest that you check out one of the other films that I mentioned earlier in this review and take a pass on this one. Frontier(s) gets 1 and 1/2 guys from me.