Wednesday, 3 March 2010


A sequel that has a lot to live up to and though it might just about prevail, it doesn't quite hit the heights of the first one. Essentially, you've seen it before.

I was one of the few excited ones to hear about REC when it was released. An original Spanish horror film that builds on the path started by Blair Witch Project of shaky-cam horror madness. The trailer was AMAZING. Though you might think Cloverfield got there first, REC was actually released a good year beforehand and instead of the grand scale of something like New York, it instead takes place, for the most part, in an apartment building.

If you watched the first one, you would know it dealt with issues such as terrorism, racism, government policy, freedom of speech, paranoia, religion, child abuse and relationships in a way that you aren't really prepared for. It was absolutely terrifying in parts and the end sequence was incredible. This was remade, almost shot for shot at times in Quarantine, which got a mediocre response. It was for the idiots who couldn't be bothered to read. So anyway, now I've laid down the initial basis, what of the sequel?

Well at least it's made by the same guys, which always fares well at least, and it picks up pretty much where the first one left off. But instead of a TV crew you're now dealing with a small SWAT team who storm the building with headcams, which (a bit like the Japanese "Siren" game series) you can see what is happening to the other members in the building as they get split up. Lo and behold it all goes kind of wrong as we say hello to some familiar faces (albeit slightly more gruesome) and meet some new ones. As we get some more background on what this 'infection' is all about, we start detangling what is actually happening here. But to be honest, I liked it better when I didn't know. Some things really are best left to the imagination - especially bits like what happened to the main girl from the first one when she got dragged off in the final shot. I didn't want to know that, it was much better in my head!

But then, this wasn't really the problem. The problem is it stalls halfway through as the narrative completely changes direction and you see it from the perspective of three kids from the beginning again, a parallel timeline if you will. These kids are completely annoying and just add more fodder to the horror cannon - you don't care enough about them and luckily you don't have to deal with them for too long. I guess it's kind of good, but it just feels a bit messy, and forced. Whereas the first one felt so natural and flowing, this one feels like they are just trying to recreate everything that made the original so great instead of approaching it from a different angle. Also, as a side note, if you remember the first one when the lady is saying her husband has gone to get their daughter drugs. Let's just say he doesn't get much of a welcome.

The story continues and a few twists happen. Nothing that will blow your mind. But you do get to see that horrible monster girl from the end of the first one proper up close and personal - which is nice. But essentially it feels a bit lame in that it just doesn't have that excitement. But I'm putting it down a lot more than I should - I would definitely go watch it and if you haven't seen the first one, you'll probably be OK not knowing what happened. You'll pick it up quickly enough. It is a lot better than most of the shit horror still banging about these days and I did enjoy it from beginning to finish - the sheer panic, desperation and isolation you feel comes right through and slaps you on the face. Not as good as the first, but pretty damn good.

Rating: 7/10

No comments:

Post a Comment