Say what you will about the French, I like 'em! Their twisted minds have entertained me time and time again with their excellent offerings to the horror movie genre. Calvaire is anything but an exception. Merciless in its delivery, psychotic in its entirety, and just plain fucked. A weird inbred cousin of "Misery" and "Deliverance" yet still its own viciously amusing monster.
A gritty raw shooting style joined with the fact there is not a even hint of a soundtrack (although the movie isn't devoid of music) until about 5 minutes from the end, set a mood for what is a twisted ride through rural France. The cast is well chosen for their creep factor at the least (I've always wondered where these European horror directors get all these ultra creepy bit actors). And the warped way in which the story unfolds coupled along with the crazily pointless but astoundingly funny scenes strew within, made me almost giddy at points. All these things being said the horror factor actually doesnt'come from over the top gore or shock factor killing, as there is only one true victim in the entire film, it more so comes from the mental and physical torture he and the audience are meant to endure.
All in all this is not a movie for the casual horror fan, you need a certain amount of fortitude, and maybe a small dose of crazy runnin' through your veins to enjoy this one. And truly i think the whole point of these films in the first place is just to keep tourists out of Europe.......... point taken.
7.5/10 detached retinas