Calvaire (The Ordeal)

MARCH 4, 2007


Holy shit Calvaire is awesome. I don’t want to spoil it though. I can say “there are spoilers” and you will read them, and you shouldn’t. Just go rent it.

I will let you know that the main guy’s car breaks down, so you know he’s gonna run afoul of something, but exactly what is what should be kept a mystery. Don’t even read the back of the DVD, as it gives away things that occur more than halfway through the film (it is my belief that a synopsis should never include things that occur past the halfway mark in a film).

What I liked most (well, until it becomes hilariously weird) was the relatively slow pace. A lot of breakdown/survival movies reveal who is the bad guy early on. But here, we are kept in suspense for a good chunk of the film as to whether or not the guy who takes in the main guy can be trusted.

Also, early on, a woman of about 85-90 years old attempts to seduce the lead, who is about 30. HOT.

I should note that it’s French. And today is my birthday.

What say you?


  1. Actually, Calvaire is Belgian, not French, though that obviously doesn't really matter when watching it, cause most of it plays in France anyway.

    But I must say that I love this flick. The slow pace sort of misleads you in a sense cause you're not sure if anything is going to happen besides the oddity of the place where our lead character is. But when it does cut loose, it's fucking awesome.

    Also, the melody of that song the guy sings can randomly pop into my head at sometimes, which is probably a sign that the film really left an impression on me.

  2. I don't think Calvaire was as good as some of the other foreign flicks coming out recently. It felt a lot more like Hostel to me than a true survival movie. That being said I did immensly love the pacing and feel of the movie. The look was awesome and it definetly had me thinking "Fuck man, bite your tongue off, it's not worth it..."
    Very disturbing movie and I loved it.

  3. I think this movie was just brilliant. I loved every minute of it, and the scene in the restaurant with the dancing just haunts me.

  4. lol, what we think about it? read it on our blog- if you want, of course :)

  5. Great recommendation! I took your "go in blind - see this now" advice to heart and I'm quite glad I did. So very creepy! Every single character, aside from the poor protagonist and including the non-humans, were just totally disturbing. I too think the dancing scene will haunt me. Definitely one of the best French language horror films I've seen.

  6. i loved this film as well as THE PACK-- can you recommend any other really good french/belgian horror films? i've seen INSIDE... THE HORDE... anything else out there?


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