Thursday, April 8, 2010
Rec (as in "record", because the entire film is seen through the eye of the camera man) is a total thrill ride of a movie. Made in Barcelona, it's a spanish film, hopefully with subtitles, that revolves around a local TV reporter named Angela Vidal and her camera man Pablo as they document the night shift at a local fire station. It starts out innocently enough, with interviews with the bomberos (firemen), the shift manager, and out of boredom... the reception desk occupied by the only mujeras (women) in the station. Suddenly, a call comes in about a person possibly trapped in her apartment. Since Angela and Pablo have been given permission to follow two firemen named Alex and Manu, wherever they go in order to get a good story about how firemen do their jobs, they unwittingly follow the firemen into the scariest adventure one could possibly endure. Once they reach the apartment building that the call came from, they find all the residents gathered in the atrium of the building. Accompanied by police, they investigate the source of the call, an elderly woman that has been screaming bloody murder for some time now. When they bust her door down, they find her just standing there frothing at the mouth. Suddenly she attacks one of the policemen and bites a huge chunk out of his neck. When attempting to get the policeman out of the building to a hospital they discover that the front door has been blocked off by the Center for Disease Control, and absolutely no one is allowed out of the building. Determined to show the world what is happening, Angela orders Pablo to record everything. When trying to get the injured policeman help through a back door, they are greeted with soldiers with machine guns. A loud speaker informs them that they are not to attempt to leave the building and will be shot on sight should they try. Fireman Alex, who has stayed upstairs to watch over the old lady, comes plummeting down the staircase with massive facial injuries. Both Alex and the injured policeman are moved to a back room, while there, heard again is the loud speaker that a BNC protocol (biological, nuclear, or chemical threat) has been put in place, and that a health inspector will soon be entering the building to assess the situation. While waiting for this to happen, Angela and Pablo take the opportunity to interview some of the buildings residents, which consist of an old couple that bicker a lot, a bitchy woman with a sick little girl whose father is forbidden to enter the building with the antibiotics he was out getting for his little girl (Jennifer), a suave wisecracking ladies man, an intern, and a japanese couple that constantly scream at each other. When the health inspector finally arrives, he inspects the injured, just to have the injured come back into conciousness and become as violent as the old lady. The health inspector locks the infected in the back room and is then forced by Manu to tell them what the hell is going on. He explains that a vet had a dog brought in with an unknown illness. The dog showed an extreme viciousness and attacked all the other pets at the clinic and that within minutes all the other animals showed the same king of aggression and the dogs collar led them to this building. It just so happens that the sick little girl had a dog taken to the vet a few days prior. This casts huge suspicion on the little girls illness even though her mother vehemently protests that it's only tonsillitis. Soon the girl starts puking blood and eventually becomes a screaming banshee and runs upstairs. While upstairs looking for her, they are once again attacked by the old lady who is finally taken out by the fireman's sledgehammer . Also while upstairs, the infected manage to break out of the back room and start attacking everyone. Everybody that gets attacked and bitten, becomes another bloodthirsty "infected". One of the last remaining uninfected residents explains that there might be a way out through a sewer drain in the buildings basement... all they need is the key. After scouring the concierges apartment for the keys, they soon learn that Manu is nowhere around, and without his protection, Angela and Pablo are on their own. The option to go down to the basement becomes impossible because everyone, including Manu, are all infected. They instead run upstairs to the attic apartment which we were told earlier was owned by a man from Madrid, but who hasn't been there in years. With this in mind, it's assumed that no one is in the attic. Upon looking around the apartment, it's apparent that some sort of scientific testing has been conducted, and strangely the entire place is filled with religious artifacts. Many news articles cover the walls. Upon reading these articles with such titles as "Vatican investigates the possible possession of a Portuguese girl" , "Portugal is moved by possessed girl" and "Hospital denies releasing Medeiros girl who disappeared during the night". A tape recorder is found and when Angela plays it, it turns out to be a diary left by the man from Madrid, about a possessed girl that he was testing and experimenting on. Apparently, he was trying to use here to create some sort of vaccine to combat demon possession. He goes on to say that the virus has mutated and has become contagious (explaining just what the "infected" are infected with). He also says that he must leave, and that he plans to seal the girl inside until she dies of starvation, which instantly eradicates the idea that they may not be alone in this apartment. Determined to escape, the inspect the attic space for a possible way out when something hits Pablo's camera, breaking the light. He turns the night vision on and to his horror see something moving in the darkness. It soon becomes visible as an emaciated girl carrying a hammer and clad only in the most disgusting underwear in existence. Roaming around in the dark, the girl (obviously still possessed) cannot see Angela and Pablo. That is until Pablo accidentally knocks something over making a noise. He is instantly attacked and drops his camera. When Angela finally finds his camera, she uses the night vision and sees Pablo being eaten by the possessed girl. She screams and is subsequently attacked, drops that camera and falls to the floor with the camera pointed in her direction. She slowly crawls toward the camera and just before reaching it, is dragged away by her feet, screaming. The End. It's truly a frightening movie, and about 2 years later was remade into an american version called "Quarantine" starring Jennifer Carpenter. A good remake (with a few more believable explanations) but Rec is still far superior. A sequel to Rec has just been finished and should reach american theaters in a few months. The sequel is supposed to take place a mere fifteen minutes after the first movie ends.