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Rec (DVD)

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28 Reviews

Genre: Horror / Suitable for 18 years and over / DVD released 2008-08-04 at Contender Entertainment Group / Features of the DVD: PAL

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    Your dooyooMiles Miles

    28 Reviews
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      11.10.2011 00:33
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      Scary horror film about a seemingly innocuous firecrew late night callout

      If you're a fan of movies in the same vein as Blair Witch Project, Cloverfield or Paranormal Activity, then Rec is going to be right up your street, and may even eclipse these other ones. I certainly thought it had a touch of class and skill about it, and it certainly made me watch and jump in all the right places.

      The film is shown completely from the viewpoint of a camera as Angela Vidal reports for TV show 'While You're Asleep', which presumably shows what happens at night. She and her cameraman stay with a night fire crew as they work out their shift, and when they get called out to attend a distressed old woman trapped in her flat, it seems like one of the less eventful callouts they get. All that changes when the old woman bites one of the crew - and it's infectious.

      This promises and threatens to be a distinctly average horror movie, but the release that it gets from an 18 certificate and the first person camera viewpoint means that what we get is truly horrific. There are a whole heap of deliberately obtuse elements to the film, and because we only get to see one viewpoint, that is all we know of what is happening. Thus, with chains of events happening elsewhere in the block of flats, the necessity of going up and down stairs, evading the rabid infected, means that you just do not know what is going to be around the next corner. And sometimes it's really not nice.

      There's a lot of screaming, and as more people become infected, thus following the usual infected human film trend, this only escalates, leaving us in no doubt that this can only end badly. The acting is solid from all, and I wouldn't be surprised if they were all told to ham it up and go overboard. There are a few silly moments, but the general conversation is very believable as if it were a live filmed couple of hours. In fact the running time is only just more than an hour, although it seems full enough to be much longer. I was impressed with the way that the lead actress followed the role of Angela, and although we don't get to see him, the cameraman's role was very strong as well, even if was only one person providing the voice to a professional cameraman.

      But I'm not even sure this was the case, such is the amateur nature of the camera and therefore making it really effective. To be honest, the way it's done makes you forget it's a film, and you always feel as if you're there. I'm just glad I watched it in daylight as there are some scenes that really will make you jump. The final scene as the film comes to a head is particularly haunting, and whereas the majority of the film, in colour, is filled with bloodshed and violence, it's the suspense and disgust combined with the two tone colours of night vision that make it a powerful ending.

      It's very dark, from start to finish, and the fact that you can't see everything, can't explain everything and everyone, and leave the film with questions you feel should have been answered, simply means that it has been done to near perfection. Directors Jaume Balaguero and Paco Plaza have done a fantastic job, and deserve the plaudits levelled their way. For an English speaker, the fact that the subtitles are in English due to it being a Spanish language film don't make an odd of difference. I'm glad it's presented like that, as you can get the words and understanding from them as well as the real feel of the emotions from hearing the tone of voice from the cast.

      I'd highly recommend this. It's one of the best films I've watched of late, and it caught me by surprise in more ways than one. Top stuff!

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        03.06.2010 12:23
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        Brilliant

        ***Film review only***

        It says on the back of the box "Blair Witch meets 28 Days Later" and this sums the film up perfectly! A very claustrobic Spanish film set in one location and since the film is shot from the point of view of the camera man for reporter Angela (Manuela Velasco) once the bad stuff starts happening it doesn't let up since the camera is always on the action. Having said that this can sometimes be a hindrance since it requires the characters to stretch credulity to keep the camera running - But I probably shouldn't question credulity when writing about a zombie movie! the only other downside to the shaky cam effect is that it can sometimes make reading the subtitles difficult and take you out of the moment. I can't remember the last time a film had me feeling so tense - possibly one of the two horror classics mentioned above! It zips by in an hour and 15 minutes and packs plenty of scares into that slight running time.

        A blind buy but one I'm very pleased with.

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          31.03.2010 22:41
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          zombies , shaky cameras , night vision : lethal combination.

          As a frequent visitor of horror websites such as Bloody Disgusting.com and Upcoming Horror Films.com, I was excited to receive a heads up on a new Spanish horror movie named "REC". Having recently seen and extremely liked the French horror Switchblade Romance I was eager to see more European edgy thrillers. The film itself is a member of the "Shaky-Camera Club" in which a handheld camera is used to film the action. The club has had extreme success with such films as "The Blair Witch Project" and "Cloverfield" and "REC" is not only as good as these films, but arguably perfects what they were trying to achieve.
          The Film centres around Journalist Angela Vidal, a presenter for the late night programme "While Your Asleep" . The current episode sees Angela and her cameraman Pablo filming the normal goings on in a Madrid fire station. As Angela roams the fire station she becomes frustrated at the boring story she in covering. At this point the viewer is being sucked into a seemingly false sense of security, but things are about to change as the fire crew are called out to an apartment complex to help a trapped elderly woman. As the police and fire crew break down the door they find the woman covered in blood, she becomes extremely aggressive and fatally bites one of the policeman on the neck . From this point on the film goes up 2 or 3 gears as mayhem ensues for the residents of the complex . A series of bites causes certain people to change, becoming bloodthirsty zombies. As the residents are picked of Angela and Pablo battle to survive and eventually make their way to an apartment. This is when the real horror sets in as the tension combined with the night vision camera make for very uncomfortable yet intriguing viewing. As a hater of spoilers, I won't mention any more than I have.
          I must say that I did love this film, do not put off by the fact it is subtitled, the action truly speaks for itself. Although the start is slightly slow, when the movie starts, it truly explodes and it is fantastic entertainment to the finish. The acting is also very sound, Manuela Velasco plays she role perfectly, and looks genuinely frightened when she is filming in pitch black. I would say it is a must have in any horror DVD collection.

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          21.02.2010 21:09
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          Sit tight!

          You know that feeling when you're at the dentist being worked on, and you realise that your body has become so tense that you're almost floating off the chair so you have to make a conscious effort to relax, well that's what this film did to me. Every now and then it would hit a nerve and I would jump even further off the chair.
          As this is a Spanish film with English subtitles it was only a matter of time before it was picked up and remade for the mass market into the film Quarantine. In fact, it took less than a year. I can't comment on that film as I haven't seen it and after watching this I have no desire to.
          Rec follows the misfortunes of a group of people trapped in an apartment building with some deeply unpleasant zombie flesh-eating types. Along with the residents are a camera crew who were in the process of filming some fire-fighters at work. They had been called to assist a resident with a problem, but it turned out they had bitten off more than they could chew. Unlike our zombie friends.
          There are many quality moments in this movie, all presented in the soon-to-be-if-not-already over-used shaky-cam style. For this film, it works. It adds a realistic and claustrophobic edge to the film which makes it all the more unnerving. The cast of unknowns offer no comfort and you know that they are all expendable from the start. I wouldn't expect too much from the cavalry when they arrive either. I'll say no more. Damn scary film.

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            17.12.2009 17:38
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            A worthy attempt at continuing the documentary style horror genre

            I have just seen the remake of this movie, and though it is a cliche but I think this, the original, is better.The reason in that you getthe sense that the first film is more of a raw shot and felt more authentic. The way a film is made to appear as reality and thus the "unbelievable" subject matter becomes more real in a viewers eyes. The remake,obviously being a reproduction is trying to recreate this raw-ness and as such does not have the same gritty edge. This tradition seemed to begin with The Blair Witch Project leading to Cloverfield and more recently Paranormal activity. This way of making a film appear shot seems to be perfect for horror films as a new innovative way to trick a viewer into believing what theyare seeing in front of their eyes. We have all been trained from a young age subconsciously to see a documentray style of shot as being real and factual.

            The premise of this film is that a news journalist is filming a documentary/report about a fire station and the daily things they do to occupy themselves and detailing to the journalist what her job involves. The light hearted style of the banter between the officers and journalist sets the movie off well as one feels, like a firefighter, as if one is waiting for something to happen. This is a perfect way to create suspense and unless you have gone into watch this film not knowing it was a horror movie then this immiediately places you slightly on guard as a viewer.


            Predictably, though suitable, they recieve a distress call from an apartment block and immiediately are dispatched to the scene, camera crew and journalist in tow. The events then that unfold inside the building perfectly execute the plot until it is resolved. From that point the sense that you are trapped as a viewer is heightened and the film then becomes more claustrophic as it progresses till the finish line.

            What lies within the apartment block I won't say but this is worth a watch to find out.

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              18.10.2009 18:49
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              A tense and genuinely frightening modern horror

              A subtitled, Spanish horror film with a premise that's somewhere between The Blair Witch Project and 28 Days Later, Rec starts off with a local TV crew filming a news piece on a fire-station at night, the footage all presented in long unedited chunks interspersed only by the times at which the camera is turned off and then back on. Filmed by cameraman Pablo (who is never seen throughout the film), young and enthusiastic news reporter Angela (Manuela Velasco) goes about presenting the report, interviewing firemen and so on when an emergency call comes through, at which point the 2-person film crew accompany the fire crew on the call.

              When they arrive at the location of the emergency it turns out that an old woman has gone crazy and became violently aggressive, and when a security guard tries to intervene he is unexpectedly bitten by the woman, the situation gradually breaking down into a chaotic scene of horror and carnage as a zombie outbreak takes place, residents, security, firemen and tv crew all finding themselves quarantined in the building by the authorities before they can work out what is happening and escape.

              The film is all in Spanish, but rather than being an obstacle this works to the film's advantage, making the film seem all the more realistic and making the various actors' (in any case excellent) performances even more convincing. It's one of the few modern horrors I've seen that I've found to be genuinely frightening: the manner in its filmed is wholly convincing and incredibly tense, and when action does take place it is frquently brutal, visceral and disturbing. There is no music whatsoever either, which only adds to the tense atmosphere.

              The zombies themselves look and sound extremely creepy and the gory special effects are excellent, whilst the interaction between the central characters is engaging and believable as the situation gradually goes from bad to worse. The film crew generally continue to film and present the event from a jouranistic perspective, which strenghtens the film's narrative structure further, but there are also lots of genuinely unsettling moments throughout in which things descend into scream-filled blackness and chaos.

              Whilst Rec borrows elements from other successful horror films it succeeds in being a unique and superbly-executed horror film in its own right. Hollywood, in their conceit, have made a bland, dumbed down version of the film themselves but the original Spanish version remains the version to watch.

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              09.10.2009 10:12
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              The best horror film to be made in years without a single doubt!

              [Rec] stands for record and is a Spanish language film shot in the documentary style made popular by films such as Blair Witch, Cloverfield and Diary Of The Dead but about a million times more atmospheric and damn more frightening. Though there are a few people who have not been keen on the film, the majority of viewers seem to be in the same mindset as me; that this is a very effective horror and one of the best films of it's genre to be released in the last few years!

              The first thing I should point out is that [Rec] is genuinely scary. Don't listen to anyone who tells you "don't believe the hype", this really is a fright-fest! There are a couple of scenes where myself and my wife found ourselves squealing with terror (yes even me!) and more than a few moments (especially one scene in paticular right at the beginning) where we found ourselves literally jumping with a combination of shock and fright. My wife actually felt physically sick after watching this and, as for me, my heart was pumping like a good 'un for long after the credits had run. I should add that this is in no way normal for me, as a horror fan I have found I have become quite blase about horror films and have grown quite immune to them over the years, so for me to experience this the film really MUST have been scary. Until now, my favourite film shot in this style was Cloverfield which was one of my all time favourites when I watched it last year. This manages to knock spots off Cloverfield and pratically sh**s all over it! I could NOT have watched this with the lights out and really wouldn't have wanted to watch it on my own, it's documentary style giving the film a whole new level and adding a heady touch of realism to what ends up being one of the scariest movies I have EVER seen IN MY LIFE!!!

              The plot is a simple one; a television reporter, Angela Vidal, and her camera man, Pablo, are spending the night filming at a local Fire station as part of a Documentary show called "While You Are Asleep" that follows the lives of workers on a night shift. It is very MTV in style and comes across as the kind of programme you might genuinely see being shown on one of these channels. For the first ten minutes, we follow Angela around as she takes a guided tour, conducts a few interviews and plays a game of basketball with the firemen. At one point, she begins to get bored because nothing is really happening, they have filmed all the background material they are going to need for the show and are just basically waiting for a call so that they can go out with the firemen on a shout. Then the alarm sounds....an elderly woman has fallen in her apartment and is calling for help. The local Fire Brigade, along with the Police and an Ambulance, have all been called to assist and Angela and her camera man, Pablo, are finally given a chance to see the firemen at work. But remember that old saying "be careful what you wish for....."? Angela is defenitely going to have cause to regret being so eager for a call before the night is through.....because in this apartment building, there is much more going on than meets the eye!

              The old lady seems to be hysterical and, in the first few minutes of arriving, attacks one of the Police Officers on scene. There is another very shocking moment several minutes later that left me and my wife speechless as it happens so suddenly and unexpectantly both for the viewer and, judging from the genuine looks on their faces, the rest of the cast as well! Then other authorities arrive and begin sealing off the building. Through a voice shouting through a loud haler from outside, we are told that the apartment block is essentially being put under quarrantine; no one is to be let either in or out. And then things start to get REALLY nasty....

              I don't want to expand any more on the plot because that has been done enough by other reviewers and, to my mind, part of the fear comes in not knowing any more than the characters what is going to happen next. But as well as the camera style, one of the things that makes this even more real is the fact that not all the cast have evidently been told everything that is going to happen either by the director; provoking very real reactions that work so much better here than they ever did in Blair Witch which famously used similar methods. Because Pablo is a professional camera man, the shots we get are slightly less shaky than in say something like Cloverfield and the whole thing has this real documentary feel that makes it very hard for you to remember that this is a fictional film at times! It really does feel genuine and this just enhances the tension more creating a film that always has you on the edge of your seat even when not much is currently happening- which doesn't happen often as it is not long before the screaming starts!!

              Even when Angela is talking directly to the camera, once the action begins you are scanning the background for something to leap out at her. But here the director further shows his skill by not always having anything occur. Often it is just as the camera begins to pan away that the scene begins to erupt causing Pablo to swiftly move his camera back in place to try and catch what is going on.

              Yes, this film has been hyped to the hilt and yes, Hollywood have since made a remake but, having not seen Quarrantine I admit (the American version of [Rec]), I still believe that this original foreign language film is defenitely one of the scariest movies around at the moment! I cannot emphasis enough how much of an effect this film had on me when I watched it last night on DVD and I am only surprised it never gave me nightmares.

              If it has one fault, it is only in that the film attempts to provide a cursory explanation for events towards the end that feels a little rushed and almost tacked on to provide closure, but even that is not enough for me to drop a star! The version I watched was the 2-disc edition that also features extended and deleted scenes and the usual behind-the-scenes footage et al that you often get with these things as well as a lok at how the film was made. But you can get this from Amazon right now for as little as £2.99 so if you haven't watched it yet, I stronglty suggest you get a copy. Just don't watch it on your own....

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                14.09.2009 16:15
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                Watch this film. Now.

                REC is a Spanish zombie-horror movie directed by Jaume Balaguero and Paco Plaza. It runs in a documentary/blair witch project style and follows reporter Angela Vidal and her off-screen cameraman Pablo. Angela and Pablo intend to report on firemen who are working a nightshift, but this turns awry when they get trapped inside a quarantined apartment block with a gang of confused residents, ignorant policemen and a contagious virus that turns people into violent folk with a tendency to bite.

                As far as handheld camera movies go (Cloverfield, Blair Witch etc.) this is the most superior. Careful thought has gone into each angle and movement to ensure that the film has all the realism of an actual documentary.

                I'm not fluent in Spanish at all, but I get the distinct impression that the cast of characters are doing a great job. The acting and the reactions are very believable, which adds to the eeriness of it all. It's only about two thirds into the film (which, in its entirety, is barely over an hour) before blunt objects are picked up and bashed into heads accordingly. The humanity and sense of panic of the characters is so much more believable than any other "zombie" movie I've seen before.

                The story is simple and riveting, and about ten minutes into the film there is already a feeling of impending doom. There are many shocking, brown-pant moments throughout and the tension is so intense you start to believe that your own home is under quarantine. The sense of claustrophobia that runs through out really does make the film that bit more horrifying.

                I have tried to find a flaw in this film, but I can't. The ending is slightly cliché and the blood is a bit of an odd colour (but the gore is regulated and also believable) but that's honestly its only vice. I recommend this to any horror fanatic, because this film (when watched in a dark room, on your own) can be truly terrifying.

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                01.09.2009 17:07
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                A superb, spine-chilling horror

                note: also appears on Flixster and The Student Room in part

                [REC], without a doubt, is one of the most thoroughly terrifying films to come out in a while, although sadly it will probably never reach the audience it deserves because it is a) foreign and b) has been remade in the US as Quarantine.

                [REC] follows a Spanish news report named Angela Vidal as she films a night-time variety programme, following a fire crew on their daily patrol. They are called to an apartment block disturbance, only to find that something more sinister is going on - a viral outbreak has occured, transforming anyone who comes into contact with it into a slobbering, psychopathic maniac. With her trusty cameraman Pablo, she attempts to survive the night, but that will be more difficult than she could ever have imagined.

                Filmed entirely from the perspective of the cameraman's lens, this is hardly a unique idea, but it lacks the sheen and finish of "pseudo-cheap" films such as Cloverfield and Diary of the Dead, and instead is the real, grimy, gritty deal. The performances, particularly from lead femme Manuela Velasco, is appropriately frenzied, and only adds to the sheer terror of procedings. The film's final 15 minutes are among the most horrifying I've seen in any horror film ever - they keep the pulse racing, and are highly disturbing. My only real complaint is that as soon as the film's credits hit, a loud rock song plays, somewhat killing the atmosphere of the film's final terrifying moments. Otherwise, this is a tense, brisk (at 75 minutes), and utterly crazy horror film that stands among the very best of the decade.

                Whilst certainly not original, [Rec] succeeds due to its sense of chaos, its relentless intensity, and the fact that it is genuinely terrifying throughout; a rarity in modern horror cinema. Undoubtedly one of the scariest films of the last decade.

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                  20.07.2009 22:56
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                  It made me jump - an experience I'd forgotten about!

                  Angela is a reporter for a local TV station and is making a documentary about firemen and their everyday life on the job. Initially, things seem rather boring - there are no calls and Angela and her cameraman are forced to sit around waiting. Finally a call comes. It seems to be a rather mundane one - residents in a block of flats heard a neighbour screaming. But when they go to investigate, they find a woman who has lost her senses and takes a serious bite out of a police officer's face. Then the building is quarantined with no apparent explanation for the residents. Angela is keen to carry on filming so that what happens is preserved for eternity...but is she going to like what she finds? And will she live to tell her story?

                  I love horrors and thrillers, but to be honest, these days, I am hard pushed to have much of a reaction - the goriest of films barely affect me. And although I liked the Blair Witch Project, since then, I've found films that deliberately look as if they are made by amateurs to be dull - Cloverfield, for example, I thought was one of the most boring films I've ever watched. Knowing that Rec is made along those lines, I didn't hold out much hope despite the hype. Thankfully I was wrong - this film affected me in a way that I haven't experienced for many years now - I just wish I had seen it on the big screen rather than on my trusty, but not exactly large, television.

                  The acting is not the most important part of this film - it is the atmosphere and the having no idea what is going to happen next that really make it. However, the actors do play their part. Angela is played by Manuela Velasco. Initally, she annoyed the hell out of me. She is an obnoxious reporter who is quite prepared to step on everyone's toes in order to get the story she wants and has a rather nasty temper to go with it. However, when it comes to showing terror, Velasco really does do her job. She completely freaks out and as it is mostly her terror that translates across to the audience, this really does have a big impact. After about half an hour into the film, her terror became mine - I really felt my heart racing.

                  Angela is really the only character who has a major impact on the film. Pablo the cameraman is also important, but we don't ever get to see his face; just his hands and his responses to Angela. This is very well done though and really adds to the feeling of panic and terror. The rest of the cast as a whole are excellent; all play their parts as though they really are on the cuff. And in fact, they are at times - there is a scene when someone falls several floors, splatting blood everywhere (as you would) - apparently this was done unexpectedly, so that the reaction we see is a real reaction (although, of course, it was a fake body in case you were wondering...).

                  Although it isn't always called as such, this is really a zombie film - complete with people taking bites out of each other and spreading the 'infection'. However, I think it is a really refreshing take on the whole zombie theme, although I'm not exactly sure why it should be so refreshing - it is, after all, lots of people trapped in a building with rabid zombies on the loose. Perhaps it is the shaky camera thing, but somehow, directors Jaume Balaguero and Paco Plaza have made a film that is truly terrifying - and I have watched countless numbers of zombie films. There is also an element of the supernatural and demonic forces, which although isn't described in great detail, is interesting and terrifying at the same time. The special effects are pretty damn good. Bite marks taken out of people's faces are shown in all their gory reality and made me flinch.

                  At about 75 minutes long, this is a relatively short film. I admire directors who decide to cut their films off before the usual 90 minute limit - there is nothing worse than a film that drags on for too long. In this case, there is a real feeling that the film is of documentary length, which adds to its realism, and I loved it. Best of all, there are a couple of twists that are a real surprise and add to the overall atmosphere. By the end of the film, my heart was racing and I felt that I had, for once, watched a quality film.

                  I probably haven't made it clear so far that this is a Spanish film. I don't speak Spanish, but adore listening to the Spanish language (and have picked up a little bit from watching Spanish films in general), so didn't have a problem with this. The subtitles were excellent and extremely clear; however, even if you have a problem with subtitles, you could probably understand this film without them - it really is the action and not the dialogue that is important here.

                  There were no extras with my disc (and am therefore reviewing the film only version), but I think there is a two disc version with all the extras you could hope for if you're so inclined.

                  All in all, this is a truly excellent film that I would recommend to any fan of the horror/thriller genre. Of course, if the genre doesn't appeal, you'll want to stay way. And no doubt those who don't like foreign language films will be put off. More fool you, I say! This really is a great film and I think a lot of people will be surprised by its quality. And at 7.8 votes out of 10 on imdb.com, a lot of people clearly agree with me. Highly recommended. This is the best film I've seen this year.

                  The DVD is available from play.com for £3.99.

                  Classification: 18

                  Running time: 75 minutes

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                    02.06.2009 10:07
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                    An amazing horror movie

                    Originally released in Spain in November 2007 [REC] was co-directed by directed by Jaume Balaguero and Paco Plaza. [REC] is a Spanish film and is, therefore, subtitled. But please don't let this put you off. Once it's up to full speed the dialogue isn't extensive and a scream is a scream in any language.

                    The movie opens with a link from a reporter called Angela Vidal. Angela is a beautiful, bright TV journalist who hosts a late night factual TV show called "While You Sleep". This weekly show follows various night-workers and on this particular evening she is sent with her cameraman, Pablo, to film the night shift at the local fire department. After spending some pretty uneventful hours at the firehouse a bored Angela is excited when an emergency call is received from an apartment building about a elderly woman who is trapped in her home. When they arrive, the police are also present to break down the door, with Angela presenting to camera and Pablo recording their actions. The trapped woman is acting very strangely and soon becomes extraordinarily aggressive, biting one of the policemen. Meanwhile, the frightened residents gather in the entrance hall, and look on as the police and military inexplicably seal off the building...

                    And so the story starts to unfold. I'm not going to spoil anyone's enjoyment by saying too much more about the plot other than it builds and builds into a climax that will literally have you on the edge of your seat.

                    Taking its cues from the Blair Witch Project, [REC] is filmed from the point of view of Pablo, the cameraman. This first-person, shaky-cam documentary style method of film-making has undergone somewhat of a renaissance lately with the likes of Cloverfield and Diary of the Dead. But [REC] does it with a unique style and energy. You honestly believe that the group of people being subjected to the unfolding horror are genuinely terrified. Indeed, during filming the Director deliberately surprised the actors with some set-pieces that they hadn't been warned about so their shock and reactions are completely real.

                    Despite its low budget, [REC] is easily the best horror film of recent years. Truly, it's a movie not to be missed. It was recently remade for an American audience as "Quarantine" which, itself, was pretty decent. But stick with the original and you'll be rewarded with a nerve jangling film of the highest order.

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                      11.05.2009 17:18
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                      Spanish horror.

                      [Rec] 2007

                      I have a fair few friends that know I like a good horror thriller and many of those have been raving about this film, yet none chose to tell me it was subtitled, strange, more of that later.

                      HMV have a '4 for £20' offer so we duly bought 4 films, this was one of them...I also bought 'American Psycho' but I'm not sure where to start reviewing that one, lol.

                      Anyway, this rather short film (75 minutes) has won a host of awards from, I have to say, a host of largely unknown (to me) host of awarders!

                      I am not going to 'list' all the actors and directors/producers as largely they will be unknown to the average Dooyoo reader (watch someone now say, 'ohh I know that actor well, and the director is well know for his short film on the life of the dung beetle), and you can always look them up on Wikipedia or imbd etc.


                      ~~The Plot~~

                      Okay, first and foremost, as I said earlier, the whole film is subtitled, it is a Spanish film, and whilst I do not really enjoy subtitled films much, I have to say, this did not seem to bother me, in fact the 100mph chatter of the reporter in Spanish lent some authenticity to it.

                      We see the main premise of the film very early on, we have a young, good looking, enthusiastic (as a puppy) female reporter who is making a reality show about fire fighters on the night watch. So far so good, there were parts of the introductory plot that were very realistic and it could well have been a documentary/reality show. Particularly good is the way the film is quite mundane whilst the reporter and camera crew roam the fire station waiting for the 'call' that means they can go out with the crew.

                      The call comes that an old woman is trapped in an apartment block, so off the engine, crew and film crew go. The lobby of the apartment block is full of residents milling around and telling the fire crew that they have heard screams from the old lady upstairs. Off they all tootle, up the stairs, to be confronted by the old woman who is distraught.

                      Then the mood and pace of the film change dramatically as she attacks one of the accompanying police officers, biting his neck badly. The fire crew rush him downstairs to get him out to an ambulance when they find the building has been sealed by the police, they can't leave.

                      That is enough of the plot, and I have to say, up to this point I was truly quite taken with the film, it was quite novel in it's approach and made me want to watch more.


                      ~~And then~~

                      I am not going to give the plot away, but I will say, the whole pace of the film is frantic and fraught from there on in. The directing seems to change from a documentary/reality show to a 'Blair witch' affair.

                      Here is where some of the problems start.

                      There are too many 'coincidences', there is too much unexplained, the camera guy is clearly doing a lot of running backwards up and down stairs without ever stumbling or getting out of breath. The make up is a little too 70's, the reporter woman just a little too hysterical, the cops and fire fighters a little too dumb.


                      ~~~So, what's good?~~~

                      Actually, even though we know it is a short (ish) film, it does fly by, it holds the viewer and the concept is good. The reporter woman is a half decent actor and the filming and directing is tense enough to keep us interested.

                      I really liked the first half of the film and thought it was going somewhere, it was creepy, well paced and tense and then, in my opinion, though others will disagree, it lost its way.


                      ~~~Finally~~~

                      'A horror masterpiece' say The News of The World, 'Scariest film ever' another publication. Get the f**k outta here. It's alright, it aint no masterpiece, it aint even scary, though my 15 year old begs to differ on that one.

                      I did quite like it, but it was certainly not all it was cracked up to be, and the DVD extras, which are the usual 'behind the scenes' footage, interview with directors, were actually quite superfluous, though, again, my son enjoyed these, I fell asleep.

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                        04.04.2009 04:09
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                        An absolute gem. Possibly the best in its genre.

                        REC is a Spanish survival "rage-zombie" horror movie that follows the raw footage captured by a local cameraman covering a nightshift in a firestation as part of a documentary series covering the work people do whilst much of the public sleep. A small crew of firefighters are dispatched after receiving a call informing them that there is an elderly woman trapped in her apartment. Naturally the cameraman and the documentary's producer, Angela Vidal, accompany the fireman as they rush to the apartment block, only to find the apartment's residents standing panic-stricken in the lobby. After the cast arrives, the entire apartment building is locked down by what appears to be Special-branch police.

                        Despite the horrifying events that follow, the movie remains essentially a documentary, most scenes involving Angela talking to the camera, and to Pablo, the cameraman who continues filming almost constantly throughout the horror and carnage, with exceptional vigilance.

                        Interviews with the terrified residents of the apartment building (as well as the firefighters and policeman called to the building) are carried out, giving a real insight into the experiences of each one. The viewer is made to feel empathy with the characters and subsequently strongly share in their desperation.

                        This is quite possibly the most tense movie I have ever seen. It has an incredibly claustrophobic feel to it, with some outstanding performances, many of which are done in a single shot. Needless to say the film includes some brilliantly-excecuted shock-scenes that are genuinely terrifying. I can honestly say that this is the first and only time I have ever actually shrieked at a horror movie.

                        The film has now been remade for an American audience under the title 'Quarantine.' I personally doubt it could match the ground-breaking style and intensity of REC, and seems to have only been made because the American audience simply cannot be arsed with subtitles.

                        The dialogue is all in Spanish and therefore subtitled in English. One may expect this to detract from the cinematic experience but after a little thought, I have come to realize that not only is this not the case, but rather the experience is enhanced, as the viewer, not being able to follow the speech itself, is really drawn to the sense of desperation in the character's voices, something which is strengthened by the speed at which the Spanish seem to talk!

                        This is definitely one of the best horror movies I have ever seen and recommend it wholeheartedly.

                        In these days of creative drought from American and English filmmakers, it may be a good idea to look into foreign films such as this.

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                          16.02.2009 17:10
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                          A scary, atmospheric movie that will have you on the edge of your seat

                          This spanish horror movie follows a reporter called Angela Vidal and her cameraman as they cover the night shift at a local fire station. They eventually get a call about an old woman trapped in her room in an old apartment building. When they get there they find the residents huddled in the lobby and the firemen head upstairs with a police man. They are all then sealed in the building and left for dead in the beginning of a chaotic and nightmarish night.

                          First of all the fact that it is in Spanish didnt make a difference for me after a while I didnt realise I was reading subtitles.
                          I found this film to be very scary, I watched it on my own in the middle of the night in the dark and at times I did look over my shoulder.The first 10 minutes is quite bland and boring but as soon as they get into the apartment building the tension builds all the way to the end. The atmosphere is very tense and you will be on the edge of your seat all the way up to the end. It does have quite a few jump out scares but the tense atmosphere and claustrophobia of the apartment building really make you want to hide behind a pillow.

                          The acting was very well done, you can see the fear and desperation in the faces of the residents and firemen as they find out they have been locked in and left for dead. You can also hear the fear in their voices especially in the ending sequence with Angela and Manu. Very good performances from all actors.

                          This film is being remade in english but I highly doubt that it can replicate the atmospheric tension and claustrophobia of the original

                          If you are a fan of horror movies then I would recommend this for you. If you dislike being frightened or violence then you may just want to give this one a miss.

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                            10.02.2009 11:38
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                            A great and very tense horror film

                            My girlfriend and I are both horror film fans so when we heard about [Rec], and read that it was supposed to be very scary indeed, we decided to give it a go.

                            I know a lot of people might be put off by the fact that it is in Spanish (what with it being a Spanish film...) and hence it is subtitled but neither my girlfriend or are are botherer by this in the slightest. I in fact find that when watching such a film, it only takes a few minutes to forget that I am reading subtitles as my brain seems to work out that the words on screen are those being said, and as such it feels just like watching any other film.

                            Anyway, on to the film. The film centres around a local news reporter and her cameraman/sound recorder. We are told at the start that they are spending the night with the local fire brigade to see what life is like as a firefighter. The presenter is talking direct to the camera as she records the links, and the only view point we have is down the lens of the cameraman. A call comes into the station about a woman who is trapped in her flat in a residential building. The fire crew set off to help and the presenter and cameraman are in tow. When they arrive at the scene, not everything is as it first seems. Events then take an unexected and unexplained turn for the worse. As the events unfold, they are captured by the cameraman and the presenter tries her best to explain what is happening, attempting to make a video record of the events...

                            The handheld camera from a single vantage point techique has been used a few times now to great effect. One of the first was the Blair Witch Project many years ago, more recently it has been used in the likes of Cloverfield and Diary of the Dead. Some people really don't like this tyle of camera work as they find it hard to follow what is going on and canfind the constant camera movement nausiating. I on the other hand think it is a very good technique for use these kinds of films. It really helps the viewer to get into the film and can really heighten the sense of the unknown as is being experienced by the characters in the film.

                            Again, it works very well in [Rec], as the events unfold, there is confusion and panic amongst the people in the residential building, and the at times frantic camera work really heightens that feeling as the viewer catches glimpses of what is happening. It really does capture the adrenaline charged feeling you get in the bottom of your stomach when you know something is happening but you are unable to see it clearly for yourself because of a crowd or whatever, for example when there is a fight in the playground when you're at school, everyone gathers round but you can't really see much more than just glimpses of what is happening at the time.

                            The storyline of the film in nothing particularly new or inventive, and in fact towards the end is a little confusing as there is an apparent lack of explanation but it works well as a a mechanism for creating the kind of uneasy tension and panic that the film desires to create.

                            The acting throughout the film is pretty good, with believeable panic, confusion, anger, fear etc. Manuela Velasco as the lead character of the television reporter is very good, her desire to get the events captured on tape and trying to find out everything she can in just the way a godo investigative journalist does, was very believeable even in very difficult situations.

                            The special effects in the film are very good indeed, with some great make up etc.

                            As to how scary this film is.... well to be honest it's not as scary as some of the quotes I'd read about it made out, it is not a film full of 'jump' moments like The Grudge for example, it is much more a tense film making the viewer hold their breath as the characters on screen try to survive, and in this, it works very well indeed, in particular last few minutes will have you ont he edge of your seat barely breathing and desperate not to utter a sound!

                            This film has recently been remade by Hollywood and named Quarantine, I have yet to see that version but I can heartily recommend this film, the original, [Rec]!!!

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