Friday, October 24, 2008
I've been wrong before, but the trailers really made this one look like dogshit. Which is why, for a while, I was willing to skip it even though I like to see most of the horror movies that come out. I mean, this whole faux-documentary thing has to be my least favorite gimmick ever (it's why I still haven't seen Cloverfield) , and this is also a remake of some foreign film, which is a weird trend that I don't think has produced the best results.
But then Quarantine goes and gets some pretty good reviews (which seems rare for a horror movie), and then I also realized that it was rated R. The trailer had lead me to assume that this was some lame-ass PG-13 horror movie aimed at teenage girls, like some When A Stranger Calls bullshit or something. But no, turns out this one is a real horror movie.
And I have to eat my hat, because Quarantine turned out to be pretty good. The first good sign was the cast. I knew that girl from Dexter was gonna be in it, and she's cute a likable, but I didn't know that Hostel's Jay Hernandez was gonna be one of the leads, and that Johnathan Schaech was in it. That's a pretty good pedigree for one of these movies, I perked right up when I saw those guys. And then another familiar face or two popped up, and the cast was solid all around.
So like I said, I normally hate the faux-documentary footage, but Quarantine is probably the most successfull attempt at the style that I've seen. I prefer horror movies to have a more elegant style, but at least here they use the shaky handheld style to build up a nice, manic energy in the final act. It's not a great horror movie, it's not incredibly scary, but it builds and builds as it goes along until it becomes reasonably exciting.
It basically comes down to 28 Days Later in an apartment building, shot in the style of Blair Witch, which sounds terrible but the results are actually pretty good. Glad I got past my biases and saw it. Maybe I should give Cloverfield a shot.