Hans is a self-confident man, driving across the country with his wife and two daughters by his side. His ego gets the better of him when he gets into an argument with another driver. The van driver turns out to be the wrong man to cross on the road, and sets out to teach Hans a deadly lesson. Skillfully pushing the buttons of Hans's arrogance, a simple family road trip turns into a deadly obstacle course in this nerve-wracking, blackly comic morality tale thriller.
- "Daytime suburbia has never been more terrifying, sit down, strap in, and prepare for the most stressful journey of your cinematic life."
- "If you're driving shortly after you've seen this, you'll be checking your mirrors with extra care."
- "This well-choreographed hunt is chilling, sure — particularly because of de Wolf’s terrifying performance and unconventional choice of weapon — but it’s also a little bit fun."
- "The one element that remains consistent throughout is a pitch black sense of humor. Even when scrambling, Tailgate resembles the Swedish comedy Force Majeure: Stripped of his bravado and toxic masculinity, Hans reveals himself a pathetic figure. There’s nothing like impending danger to dress down a bully."
- "The Dutch countryside has never looked as dangerous as it does in Tailgate, Lodewijk Crijns’s high-energy thriller. Here, those smooth roads become a wasteland frontier where vans can run bikers down at will and the terrain is so flat that you can’t hide from your enemy. At 80 minutes, this is lean, taut filmmaking. Gnarly set-pieces humiliate the characters while the sun shines bright in the sky. Coming mere months after the Russell Crowe vehicle Unhinged, Tailgate will appeal to more sophisticated petrol-heads who prefer the European style. It’s the Audi to Crowe’s Chevrolet."
- "Even with a seasoned history of similar thrillers behind it, Crijns’ film stands out as a remarkable watch; a punchy, fierce, unstoppable few hours of incredibly tightly-wound family drama, thrown through a positively dread-inducing kaleidoscope of vehicular mayhem. It really is a force of nature, and one that’ll leave you checking your rear-view mirror for weeks."
- "Tailgate is an exceptionally stressful film to watch – and I mean that in the best way possible. Anxiety inducing, nerve-wracking and ever so exciting."
- "...superbly done."
- "The story of the film is ...in Crijns’s showmanship in executing this genuinely insane premise in a way that both entertains and terrifies. The filmmaker succeeds on both fronts with wild abandon, from the dynamic camerawork that utilizes the entire geography of the family van to how the dimensions of space and time are entirely grounded in the real world. "
- "Tailgate manages to scare the viewer without the addition of supernatural forces or bloody scenes, and that’s one of its strengths. This one will have me rethinking my action on the road, and double-checking my rearview for some time to come."
- "Tailgate is a powerhouse of a thriller. It’s an absolutely intense viewing experience. The performances are stellar, the plot is simple and effective, and the subtext is identifiable, but not glaring. It’s my hope that this film finds a large audience, because I would love to see more thrilling stories from Crijns and company. One thing’s for sure, I will think twice the next time I lose my temper behind the wheel."
Awards & Recognition
Best Supporting Performance
North Bend Film Festival
Golden Calf - Sound Design
Netherlands Film Festival
Sitges Film Festival
Golden Calf - Best Director
Netherlands Film Festival