Offensive follows a retired American couple inherit a farm inFrance and was billed as pitting the older generation against a new generation of ‘technological psychopath’. It’s a tricky theme to pull off, and the young people vs. old people tends to boil down to the same vapid ‘young people don’t care or respect anything, they’re attached to their phones, and they’re criminals’. Sadly, my fears were confirmed, and not in a good way.
The film was entertaining, but there’s a real issue with it’s villains, perhaps simply to me as a relatively ‘young person’. I understand that something with a motivation for wanton destruction can’t be understood other than ‘boredom’ and is theoretically a significant threat. It can’t be dissuaded, only destroyed. It’s just difficult to move past the ‘damn kids’ trope. There’s also an interesting parallel with the Nazi occupation of France that was a… interesting choice.
It’s easy to see the aims of the filmmakers in their work, but it simply isn’t as appealing. In the spirit of the ‘revenge horrors’ like I Spit On Your Grave, but never manages to build the same visceral hatred for the antagonists like the classics in its genre. The film seemed almost willing to call itself out on the plot a couple of times, various antagonists saying that the French were sick of the whole ‘American Liberator’ narrative (the whole narrative arc of the film), though considering that this always came from antagonists it sends an oddly confused message. The practical effects of the eventual rampage from the main characters are fantastic and were surprisingly the high point of the film, they’re done really well and resulted in repeated winces. Always a good sign for a horror.
You can view our full list of reviews from Triple Six Festival here.