Review: “[REC]”

w[REC]king your shit

Lately, foreign films have caught my eye more recently due to the utter tripe that is being released here in the States. This isn’t to sound pretentious or anything but 10,000 BC was probably the only movie worth seeing in this years summer line-up. (Despite the bullshit test audience-friendly cop-out of an ending…) Due to this, I have found myself scourging the internet for any good films to watch that some of you may not have heard of. This happens to be one of those movies…

[REC] is a thrilling little Spanish horror flick by directors Jaume Balagueró and Paco Plaza. A television reporter, Angela (played by the adorable Manuela Velasco), is covering the night shift of local fireman when they receive a call about an old woman in hysterics in her apartment. When they arrive, they find something more grim and sinister.

Shot with the experimental “handycam” we all know and love, this style of filmmaking only intensifies the experience and makes you feel as if you were there. Fortunately, this isn’t used as a crutch for the film either. In fact, I find the apartment building to be another factor in the overall tension in the movie. Being isolated in such a small confined space with the infected radiates a sense of claustrophobia.

The infected themselves are reminiscent of the infected in another film I like, 28 Days Later. I am not positive if that movie influenced the certain aesthetics of the infected in this movie (Both have the “blood red” eye thing going on…) but it works well considering they look very menacing.

Another thing that’s nice about this film is the use of sound as a device for terror. Ambient noises like the howls of the infected and items being broken/thrown make you want to turn around in your chair only to find out it’s coming from the movie. (I had earpieces while watching it so that may have been a factor too.) Speaking of the howls, they are downright horrifying. Imagine the sound of a cat shrieking at a unwanted intrusion only have the soundbite be downtuned to make it sound like they were possessed by Lucifer himself.

Coincidentally, religious overtones become more prominent later on in the movie. I won’t spoil it for you but the ending sheds some light on the origin of the viral outbreak that ravages the apartment complex. Although said ending comes out of left field, subtle hints are placed throughout the movie that foreshadows just who was at work for spreading this disease.

Overall, it’s a fun little film tact with a lot of suspense and tension which was executed wonderfully. One minor complaint would be that it’s too short but I would rather have the pacing be non-stop and uncompromising than to slow it down with unneeded dialogue that would have the film drag on.

Oh, and in typical American movie studio fashion, a remake is on the way because we Americans just hate reading subtitles. Hopefully it’ll will be worth everyone’s time, even if it as faithful to the original.

Rating: 4/5

3 Responses to “Review: “[REC]””

  1. Very (very) boring film.

  2. […] 2 is going to rec sum shit. a lot better than f*cking gta4. no jetpacks u have to got 2 be kidding me […]

  3. Great film – and I totally agree with your comments about the use of ambient sound in the film’s sound design too – definitely helped generate the film’s sense of dread.

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