[REC] (2007) Review
Written by: the5thdroog
Not sure how all of this got started, but now we have another live video type movie. In the same vein as “Cloverfield” and “Diary of the Dead”, “REC” lets us witness a pretty intense event through the eyes of someone who happens to have a camera ready to film everything. Of course, the circumstances come about rather innocently and just; it still boils down to that type of movie. One big difference is this time it is brought to us by Spain. I’m not sure how far ahead or behind this movie was compared to the other two, but I do know that as soon as American studios heard about this one they were already acquiring the rights to do our own version, which is set to be released this year under the title “Quarantine”. REC wasn’t even finished at the time those legalities were finalized. Was there good reason for their anxiousness?
We start out by being introduced to our reporter for the nighttime television show “While You Are Sleeping”. She and her cameraman are in a firehouse interviewing the guys and showing people what the life of a fireman is like at night. They continue to hope for some sort of excitement while they are touring the facility and finally a call goes out. It is from an apartment building, in which some residents have heard some strange screams coming from a room that can’t be easily accessed. They arrive on the scene only to find that there are already a couple of police officers on site. They needed the extra muscle that the firemen can provide to break down the door of the apartment to make see what is going on inside. The whole time our reporter is trying to make this event as exciting and interesting as possible and keeping the viewers up to date on what is going on. The door comes down and they enter the room to find an old woman wandering around in the dark. As they approach her they can tell something isn’t right. She quickly runs at the policeman that is in the front of the line and starts biting him. The other policeman takes her down, while the firemen go to the aid of the fallen officer. Everyone escapes the room and gets back down to the lobby where the rest of the building's occupants are waiting with newly found concern. Everyone decides it would be best if they get out so they can get the policeman to the hospital, but before the can make it out they realize there are surrounded by safety operatives of the city and the building is being covered in a big plastic tarp so as to keep any toxins from escaping the complex. The policeman that is still alive tries to calm everyone down by saying this is just a precaution being put in place for the safety of those outside, not that he has any idea what they are being protected from. Now as everyone inside tries to figure out how to get out, they also have to wonder why all of this is going on and how much danger they are really in and from what.
The acting was okay. I mean I had to read subtitles so it is kind of hard to tell how well the lines were executed, but based on facial expressions and the mannerisms, everyone seemed to be doing their part well enough. I found the main reporter to be a bit annoying at times, but I think that was supposed to feel that way. For the most part I could feel the despair of the residents.
There were a couple of good effects. The gore was minimal, but there were a couple of good little gags. One in particular dealt with a very nasty facial wound caused from one of the attacker’s bites. It looked pretty good. The movie dealt mostly with suspense over gore and that was effective enough, but the last scene combined the suspense and a very freaky looking “thing” that could stay in my mind for awhile. Very effective.
In the end, the movie is well worth watching. I’m think I’m looking forward to the American version with this one because it might be done a little smoother. I don’t mean that in a bad way. The movie was supposed to be choppy because we are watching unedited film from a two-man crew on a late night television show. I also expect the acting may be a bit better. This movie is good and I think accomplishes what it sets out to do, but if you haven’t seen it yet and want to wait for the remake coming out this year I don’t think you’ll be missing much by doing that. From what I’ve seen of “Quarantine” it seems to be pretty close to a scene for scene remake. I just hope they hold on to the storyline and what is actually going on as well. Some of the things that happen in the movie have been done before, but the reasoning for these things happening was actually quite interesting to me. It was the only thing that made me wish it wasn’t a witness and a camera story so they could’ve delved into that subject a bit more. If you get a chance I think it is worth your time to watch this movie. The runtime is just over 70 minutes, so it wouldn't take up too much of your time, but if your like me you'll be thinking about it for a little bit longer.