INSIDE (2007). Review by Steve Kirkham

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INSIDE (2007)

4 stars
Second Sight. Blu Ray. 5th February

Label Second Sight take another dip into the tranche of films which have become known as ‘New French Extremity’ – a group that includes their recent release HIGH TENSION (2003), plus FRONTIER(S) and MARTYRS (2008) among others. And oh boy, do those folks over the channel know how to make brutal productions – with INSIDE wearing it’s tag of extreme with uncompromising pride.

The story opens with a car crash. It is raining. Sarah (Alysson Paradis – younger sister of Vanessa Paradis, in case you were interested), one of the drivers is pregnant and left bloodied and bruised from the accident. Her husband is killed.

Some time later, she is near full term and alone at home, still scarred both physically and emotionally from the incident.

A knock at the door is the prelude to a shocking and sanguinary night. A woman (played by famous actress Béatrice Dalle, identified only as La Femme in the credits), asks to use the phone and seems to know rather too much about Sarah. She refuses her entry and calls the cops. However they find nothing and Sarah is once again on her own – the stranger manages to gain entry and attacks her with a large pair of sharp scissors – she wants to cut out the baby! What follows is a night of gory excess as the heavily pregnant Sarah tries to save both herself and her unborn child from this crazed intruder. Much splatter follows…

This was the filmic debut of directing duo Alexandre Bustillo and Julienne Maury (who also wrote the script) who have crafted a ferociously violent and blood soaked horror – the sort of film you find yourself saying “holy f*ck” at the screen. Having seen this when it first came out, at FrightFest, I’d forgotten quite how savage this was – it’s lost none of its power! There is one scene near the end, in particular, where you think “surely they won’t go there…” but after the blood-drenched scenes that have preceded, you just know the filmmakers won’t be able to resist.

Bustillo and Maury have gone on to a successful career including such films as LIVID (2011), LEATHERFACE (2017) and THE DEEP HOUSE (2021). Inevitably this was a remade in the US in 2016 – watch this much better original instead.

Steve Kirkham

Extras
New audio commentary by Anna Bogutskaya
New audio commentary by Elena Lazic
Several Interviews – Alexandre Bustillo and Julien Maury;Actor Alysson Paradis; Producer Franck Ribière; Cinematographer Laurent Barès; Stunt Coordinator Emmanuel Lanz
The Birth of a Mother: Jenn Adams on Inside

The Limited Edition comes in Rigid slipcase with new artwork by James Neal and includes a 70-page book with new essays by Chad Collins, Kat Ellinger, Annie Rose Malamet and Hannah Strong and 6 collectors’ art cards.

Also available as a non-limited edition which just has the extras