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High Tension (2003)
"Haute tension" (original title)

NC-17  |   |  Horror, Thriller  |  10 June 2005 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.9/10 from 52,711 users   Metascore: 42/100
Reviews: 538 user | 249 critic | 30 from Metacritic.com

Two college friends, Marie and Alexa, encounter loads of trouble (and blood) while on vacation at Alexa's parents' country home when a mysterious killer invades their quiet getaway.


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6 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Le tueur
Père Alex
Mère Alex
Marco Claudiu Pascu ...
Jean-Claude de Goros ...
Capitaine Gendarmerie
Bogdan Uritescu ...
Homme voiture


Alexia travels with her friend Marie to spend a couple of days with her family in their farm in the country. They arrive late and they are welcomed by Alexia's father. Late in the night, a sadistic and sick killer breaks into the farmhouse, slaughters Alexia's family--including their dog--and kidnaps Alexia. Marie hides from the criminal and tries to help the hysterical and frightened Alexia, chase the maniac, and disclose his identity in the end. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Hearts will bleed.


Horror | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated NC-17 for strong graphic violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




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Release Date:

10 June 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

High Tension  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


€2,200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$246,140 (Italy) (10 June 2005)


$30,781 (Chile) (22 September 2006)

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (DVD) | (re-cut) | (edited)

Sound Mix:

| (US version)| (US version)| (original version)


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


According to 'Alexander Aja' the scene where Marie hides from the killer in the gas station restroom was a homage to a similar scene in the movie Maniac (1980). See more »


The perspective of the video security camera in the gas station changes twice. See more »


Le tueur: You can't escape from me, bitch!
See more »


Referenced in This Means War (2012) See more »


A toutes les filles
(Lyrics: Félix Gray - Composer: Didier Barbelivien)
(p) 1990 Yearling Productions
(c) Zone Music
By kind permission of Félix Gray et Didier Barbelivien
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

High Tension
19 June 2004 | by (Waterford, MI) – See all my reviews

"Haute Tension" is one of the best horror films I have seen in years. It is appropriately gruesome and shocking and does not take the wise cracking, action movie based horror movie approach that so many recent horror films have taken. The film is well made and paced and builds up the suspense to a crescendo and does not overstay it's welcome. One would have found it unusual for French cinema to be the one to revitalize the horror genre which has become hackneyed and trite in Hollywood (so many want to refer to it as psychological thriller). The story follows 2 college co-eds visiting the homestead of one of the girl's family on a school break. A mysterious man in a mechanic jumpsuit and old truck (reminiscient of the one in "Jeepers Creepers")comes to the house in the night and brutally murders the family, kidnaps the girl and overlooks her friend who has to pursue the killer to rescue her friend. Director, Alexander Aja, does not make a pedestrian, light weight horror film and the deaths in the film are disturbing and brutal. There is no humor or comic relief and the blood literally soaks the camera lens. The sense of dread and the unrelenting suspense and pace makes this a refreshing breath of fresh air from all of the PG-13 rated "Scream" wannabes that have been hitting the multi-plexes. Wes Craven had reportedly seen "Haute Tension" at Sundance and has hand picked Alexander Aja to remake "The Hills Have Eyes" and have free artistic licence since Craven had pegged him as the "future of horror." There is even a plot twist which you will either love or hate but it fits in well with the film. The performances by Cecile de France, Maewenn and the actor who portrays the killer are perfect. All in all, this is a French film that deserves to be seen in American multiplexes and a must see for horror movie fans the world over who have been having to settle for mediocre horror for many years now.

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Does no one understand the twist? iNCRiMiNAT3
what's up with the bad guy mastubating using decaptivated head shiva-maharjan
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ok, the plot holes/gas station scene/dad dying ryoki9-1
NC-17??? lucas_isjustme
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