Review: Livid (2011)

Beatrice Dalle features in French horror Livid, a film where young trespassers stumble across a dark house...

Beatrice Dalle features in French horror Livid (Livide), a film that revolves around the old staple of a dark house, young trespassers and what they discover within.

A very atmospheric and promising start sets a tone and mood which is not sustained to the end. Livid is very stylishly realised and the young leads are convincing as they search the spooky old house with a comatose old hag in residence upstairs. Their search for missing treasure leads them into a terror-filled encounter with supernatural forces they cannot comprehend – at least that is the idea.

In reality there are just too many ideas going on here. At first it is a straightforward horror, then it becomes a fable of lost youth. It finally has pretensions of echoing the great Let The Right One In and falls considerably short. So what is the main problem here?

Whilst it has oodles of style, great performances, icky effects and an atmospheric score Livid highlights how deceptively hard it is to make a worthy horror film. This one just isn’t scary – the shocks are too well telegraphed and the developments too predictable. In the end it becomes another formulaic scary movie when it clearly intended to be so much more.

As is nearly always the case, an English language remake is in the pipeline. Not really worthy of one this time.

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