Advertisements

[REC] (2007)

rec

A television reporter and cameraman follow emergency workers into a dark apartment building and are quickly locked inside with something terrifying.

recREC is a 2007 Spanish horror film co-written and co-directed by Jaume Balagueró and Paco Plaza. The film follows a television reporter, Ángela Vidal (Manuela Velasco) and her cameraman Pablo (Pablo Rosso), who cover the night shift in one of Barcelona’s local fire stations for the fictional documentary television series ‘While You’re Asleep’. The firehouse receives a call about an old woman who is trapped in her apartment, so the camera crew follow the firefighters, led by Manu (Ferran Terraza), to the apartment building. When they arrive, nothing can prepare them for what lies ahead.

I have been meaning to try and see REC for a long time now. I actually did see the USrec remake ‘Quarantine’ a few years back, and whilst I thought that was a good film, I kept hearing people say how much better the original spanish version was and so this past week I managed to finally watch it (along with parts 2 & 3!). WOW!! Why the hell did I wait so long to watch this film?! Quite honestly one of the best horror films I have seen in years, I really wasn’t expecting to enjoy it quite this much. I wrongly assumed that the whole shaky-cam and faux-documentry premise had been done to death in recent years, and that surely REC could offer nothing new and fresh. Unbelievably it does, and then some! We get a superb claustrophobic location, an actual reason for people to keep filming the situation, incredible looking zombies of all age, shape and sizes, blood, guts, gore and most of all scares, lots of scares. Pretty much all any horror fan can ask for.

recI don’t really want to go into the plot very much here, as this is definitely a film that you should just approach knowing as little as possible about, and then just sit back and watch this journey into hell unravel. Without ruining anything, REC is a zombie film but with a difference. At under 80 minutes the film flew by, and I just wanted to find out what happened next (so I watched REC 2, click for review!). As the night progresses and the disease is infecting the residents, it causes them to turn into bloodthirsty savages. More and more people in the building become infected, and Ángela and Pablo are forced to fight them off. Eventually they learn that there is a key to a door in the apartment building workshop, which leads to an exit via the sewer system. However, the key is located on the third floor in the manager’s apartment. Here secrets are revealed and the true nature of the virus is revealed. The final 20 minutes or so are a masterclass in suspense and horror as we begin to discover what has been perpetrated here. We are even treated to some night vision action (not of the Paris Hilton variety luckily) and these scenes in particular are gut wrenching and tense to watch.rec

REC is quite simply brilliant. The directors did a superb job of creating something unique and different, and gave us a great story with an interesting twist. Visually it looked great, despite being filmed as a documentary and therefore using a hand-held camera, the camera-work, pacing, scripting, and special effects all combine to create a superb thriller. So many individual moments combine to keep us in a constant state of terror and claustrophobia. Creepy zombie kids, old zombies, night vision zombies, just so many different and brilliant treats and scares! I like that the concept of the typical zombie genre has been turned on its head with REC. Usually in zombie movies survivors board themselves inside some place and fight to keep the monsters out. In REC, survivors are trapped inside with the monsters, and must resort to more drastic measures to find a way out. Kudos to Jaume Balagueró and Paco Plaza for creating this.

recAs for the acting, going above and beyond the call of duty was the leading lady Manuela Velasco as Ángela. I was amazed to learn she is a spanish television presenter with no real acting experience. She was a total natural on camera and put in a truly excellent performance. She was cool and calm when she needed to be, and portrayed fear and emotion as the night progressed. The fact that she was beautiful to look at didn’t hurt either!

In closing, REC really should be seen by all horror fans, and I’m just annoyed at myself it took me around 5 years to finally see it. Please try and see it wherever and whenever you can if you havent already seen it, and if you have seen it I envy you for beating me to it. I genuinely can’t imagine anyone not loving this movie. Bravo España 🙂

Advertisements
Leave a comment

41 Comments

  1. Nice one man. This is a great horror flick. I’ve had the second one lying around for a while and I still haven’t got around to it. You’ve put me in the mood for it now.

    Like

    Reply
    • Cheers Mark. Yeah, I watched all 3 back to back the other day, couldn’t get enough! My reviews for them all will all be out this week, but sadly (spoiler alert!) the scores go down……..REC 2 was awesome though, just not quite on a par with the first. You should get it it watched so you can agree/disagree with my thoughts on it 🙂

      Like

      Reply
      • Good to hear it. I’ll try and get around to it soon. I’m falling behind on a lot of stuff though. Ive a few reviews to finish and loads of stuff to watch. I’ll also send you my desert island picks shortly. Hopefully today.

        Like

        Reply
        • No worries, look forward to your list. The project is going way better than I dreamt it would, got a nice back log of peoples film choices to post at some point. Hence why I did this REC review, dont want to get sidetracked and forget my original purpose is to offer some reviews!

          Like

  2. atothewr

     /  August 6, 2012

    I enjoyed Quarantine and I have been wondering about this one. I need to check it out sometime.

    Like

    Reply
    • If you liked Quarantine you will love REC. They are basically shot for shot the same, and as much as I like Jennifer Carpenter she has nothing on Manuela Velasco. REC just looks and feels like a better film, and has a different ‘problem’ rather than just being a virus like in Quarantine.

      Like

      Reply
  3. theipc

     /  August 6, 2012

    These three movies kicked all sorts of butt!

    Like

    Reply
  4. Great horror film this one, Quarantine wasn’t bad either. Still have to see the second one too so may check it out. very good review once more!

    Like

    Reply
  5. Excellent review! I’m a huge fan of this movie (and have 2 & 3 queued up). It’s just so well done.

    Like

    Reply
  6. Great review. [REC] is in my opinion one of the best horror movies ever made. A truly stunning film. I love the second one too. I don’t envy you having to write a review for the third film, I really struggled with it. Now looking forward to [REC] 4 Apocalypse

    Like

    Reply
  7. This is one of the best found footage movies around, though I found the ending kind of odd.

    Like

    Reply
    • Really?? Don’t want to spoil the ending here, but my REC 2 review will be up in a day or so, then I can ask you what you didn’t like over there! 🙂

      Like

      Reply
      • It’s not that I didn’t like it, I just didn’t get it I guess. I’ll wait to talk about it more once REC 2 goes up (though I haven’t seen that one, so I’ll have to avoid spoilers for it…)

        Like

        Reply
        • I won’t spoil REC 2 in that review, that will happen in part 3!! The ending is cleared up in the second film to be honest (kind of) 🙂

          Like

  8. Excellent review on REC. I watched this movie last week and I seriously can’t stop thinking about it. I watched it a few more times since and have been reading a lot of reviews on it. I have to say that this is hands down the best one I’ve read. I agree with everything you said; you really hit the nail on the head. Great job. Great horror movies of this caliber are so few and far between. I have to say though REC is a masterpiece.

    Like

    Reply
    • Thank you, you’re too kind. Good to see another REC fan. My only regret is waiting so long to finally see it. I’m going to watch it again very soon, if only to erase the image of REC 3 out of my head 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by, appreciate it your comments!

      Like

      Reply
  9. i strongly agree rec is one of my top grossy flms in apocalypse iwant mire aand ori to come back with manuela velasco

    Like

    Reply
  10. Really wanna watch this movie again after reading your review.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  1. [REC] 2 (2009) | Head In A Vice
  2. [REC] 3: Genesis | Head In A Vice

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Advertisements