7 Days

Director: Daniel Grou (2010)
Starring: Remy Girard, Claude Legault, Martin Dubreuil
Find it: IMDB, Amazon

Another Gallic-themed update this week, with a gritty French torture flick in which a bereaved father kidnaps his daughter's kidnapper/rapist and conducts torture onto him. Including - but not limited to - making the man go potty out of his own belly. It's a bit like The Tortured, only it's technically better, more realistic and there's no stupid twist. It's also harder to watch and a lot crueller. Director Daniel Grou understands that bereavement is depressing enough without having to resort to soppy flashbacks all the time. When 7 Days does make with the flashback sequences, it's fucking heartbreaking. The final scenes are genuinely quite upsetting and difficult to watch. It doesn't even need the torture sequences at this point.

"Makes Saw look like kids stuff," brags the tagline. That's not particularly true. The torture here is a lot more realistic (no silly exploding heads or garish bright red blood) and surgical. It's nothing hardened gorehounds won't have seen before though, even if 7 Days shows more male flesh (read: tiny penises) than most mainstream horror movies.

Unlike the unlikeable uninteresting characters in The Tortured, 7 Days makes its main character sympathetic and believable. You don't believe for a moment that Jesse Fucking Metcalfe is capable of anything beyond looking in a mirror. Charles Legault sells his character's plight completely, right down to the vomit-stained t-shirt. Most importantly (and something The Tortured failed to grasp) you actually give a shit about the story here and have a little emotional investment.

Still, 7 Days is a hard film to like. The subject matter is too unpleasant for my liking, and I'm simply not a fan of the torture subgenre; even when it's as very well done as it is here.

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