Disappointing French thriller, thanks to a ridiculous plot, overblown direction and some dodgy acting from Clovis Cornillac.
| Original Score: 2/5
The film isn't much like recent examples of torture porn. It's too stylish for that.
| Original Score: 3/5
The story came from Get Carter's source author, English crime writer Ted Lewis, but the venomous sophistication and serpentine inner logic are French.
Taut, stylish French thriller, based on a novel by Ted Lewis.
It's slick, efficient, tough-nosed film-making, enmeshing our hapless hero more and more tightly in its narrative coils. Only a matter of time, surely, before Michael Douglas shows up in the remake.
| Original Score: 4/5
A penchant for silliness and a tabloid-ready storyline mean The Serpent is a decent thriller that loses some of its impact as it unfolds, but remains a well-paced and enjoyable film.
A mite overblown, but no less enjoyable for it - and guaranteed to get a Hollywood re-jig.
You will be thrilled all the way through Le Serpent, and once the final credits roll, you will be awed by the muscular solidity of its construction.
The Serpent makes atmospheric use of its urban locations. But the more overblown the film becomes the less it engages our emotions.
An occasionally effective and stylish piece of filmmaking, capturing both the gloss and grime of the best thrillers, and delivering the odd shock as well.
Not unwatchable, but a distinct let-down, since this crew surely had a more incisive movie in them.
| Original Score: 3/6
Director Eric Barbier's thriller is an ambitious affair, full of writhing storylines, switchback narrative and a terrifically vile villain in the form of Clovis Cornillac.
An appropriately serpentine plot makes for an engaging thriller. It's a shame then that the final showdown is so daft.