Saint Ange

Having sat through French chiller Saint Ange there’s only one thing left to say: What?

A young pregnant woman is sent to clean an abandoned orphanage in rural France shortly after World War Two. As she sets about her scrubbing duties, she begins to experience some very strange things – like hearing the footsteps and voices of children down the long lonely hallways. So far so good….

But where El Orfanato was spooky and The Others was creepy, Saint Ange is plodding, confusing, uneven and mostly downright dumb. I still can’t tell you what the hell was going on. Who was good and who was bad? What were they on about? (motivation, anybody?) And had no-one in the cast actually been to acting school? More to the point, I gather this was Pascal Laugier’s first feature film. On the strength of this, it may be his last.

Oh, and while there’s an establishing shot or two of a nice French chateau, the rest of it was shot in Romania – which as you know by now, is basically a synonym for “inauthentic”. Really, don’t bother.