Genre: Action, Drama, Horror
Year Released: 2017, 2022 (Second SIght Blu-ray
Runtime: 1h 48m
Director(s): Coralie Fargeat
Writer(s): Coralie Fargeat(screenplay by)
Cast: Matilda Lutz, Kevin Janssens, Vincent Colombe, Guillaume Bouchede?
Where To Watch: Now available from Second Sight Films (Region B) Order Here
RAVING REVIEW: This is tough, very much in the vein of films like I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE; the “revenge” aspect is clear and present, but I would’ve liked to have seen a little less focus on sexualizing the character.
While I don’t believe the following “spoils” anything, I did want to at least mention there are some aspects of the plot talked about here. In writing this review, I must mention certain things that happen in the film.
REVENGE is a 2017 film directed by Coralie Fargeat that follows a young woman named Jen (played by Matilda Anna Ingrid Lutz) who is taken to a remote desert house by her rich and powerful boyfriend, Richard (Kevin Janssens). When Richard's friends wrong Jen, she fights back and embarks on a brutal revenge mission against the men who did this to her.
Overall, the film empowers women by portraying a female character taking control and seeking retribution for the violence and abuse she has suffered. The film also subverts traditional gender roles by showing Jen as a strong and capable survivor who can outsmart and defeat her male assailants.
Throughout the film, Jen is objectified and sexualized, with close-up shots of her body and frequent references to her physical appearance. This objectification is particularly evident in the scene where Jen is assaulted, as the camera lingers on her body and the attackers' actions are depicted in a voyeuristic manner.
Additionally, while REVENGE presents Jen as a strong and capable survivor, it also reinforces harmful stereotypes about women and violence. In the film, Jen uses her femininity and sexuality to manipulate and defeat her male attackers, further perpetuating the stereotype that women must use their sexuality to get what they want.
Overall, we get a complex film that both empowers and sets back women. While the film's portrayal of a strong and capable female survivor is undoubtedly empowering, it ultimately falls short in its treatment of women and its message about gender roles and power dynamics. There’s a fine line here between showing her as a powerful character and objectifying and sexualizing her while reinforcing harmful stereotypes about women and violence.
- Audio commentary by Kat Ellinger, author and editor of Diabolique
- Out for Blood: a new interview with director Coralie Fargeat and actor Matilda Lutz
- The Coward: a new interview with actor Guillaume Bouchede
- Fairy Tale Violence: a new interview with cinematographer Robrecht Heyvaert
- Death Notes: a new interview with composer Robin Court (Rob)
For more reviews and my YouTube channel, please visit linktr.ee/Overlyhonestmoviereviews
Follow me on Letterboxd, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. Find my social media accounts on most platforms simply by searching Overly Honest Movie Reviews.
I’m always happy to hear from my readers; please say hi or send me any questions about movies.
[photo courtesy of SECOND SIGHT FILMS]