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Who doesn’t love a bit of festive horror?

And there’s plenty to like about this French horror thriller from director Patrick Ridremont.

Eugenie Derouand stars as Eva, a paraplegic who receives a mysterious box in the guise of the titular advent calendar from her friend Sophie (Honorine Magnier). As expected with ominous gifts with offers of treats that stretch from confectionary to real life rewards, there will be repercussions.  The question though is whether the benefits outweigh these hindrances? How much is one willing to salvage for a better chance at life? For Eva, this temptation proves too great, but how far is she willing to go?

There are three rules to follow.

Eat all the chocolate… Or die.

Do every task given… Or die.

And don’t dump the advent calendar… Or…you guessed it. You die.

The premise is pretty straight up and the performances are solid across the board, allowing the viewer to step into the narrative easily. We’re even presented with a nicely stylised creature who lurks from within the box and comes out when rules are broken or when sacrifices need to be made. This helps ramp up the tension suitably, hooking you further into the drama. And sure enough when things go sour, it does so that stays firmly in believability. A tough thing to do when you’re playing in the realms of fantasy.

The prognosis:

A solid feature with some nice moments that entertains despite some predictable moments.

It helps that the performances from the leads are strong to fuel the the loss of control as the drama unfolds.

  • Saul Muerte

The Advent Calendar is currently streaming on ShudderANZ