REC was one of my favorite horror movies of the last decade, so naturally when I heard a sequel was being made I was both excited and worried. I had the same feelings when I heard they were remaking REC for the US audiences, but that turned out fairly OK seeing has how Quarantine was almost a shot for shot remake, except for a few things. I was also relieved to hear that the original directors/writers were back to create the sequel. So based on that information, as well as some of the earlier teasers and trailers, I was really excited to see how they would continue the storyline and how they would re-use the same first person POV style that we saw in the first one.
From here on out there are going to be a lot of spoilers. I don’t really know how to explain how I felt about the movie without them, so if you’re looking for this to be a surprise I would highly advise against continuing.
The movie starts off exactly where the first one ends, the apartment building is filled with infected people and the police, hazmat units and SWAT teams are all assembled outside as they try to figure out what’s going on. The SWAT team is given orders to take a man inside with them in order to retrieve a blood sample from one of the original infected people in order to make an antidote. There is 1 SWAT member that has a camera as well as helmet cams on each of the officers helmets. This was actually kind of refreshing. I liked the way the original used a single camera to tell the story from the reporters point of view, but the addition of these helmet cams gave us a different look at things which was cool. I also liked the fact that the first 40 minutes or so of the movie is from the point of view of the SWAT team, then the second 20 minutes or so shows us the POV of some kids that started off outside the building and managed to sneak in through a sewer. And then the last 20 minutes or so are of both groups as they come together. It was a nice little change of pace from the normal one sided point of view that the original did so well.
Once the SWAT team is inside they are of course attacked by the infected people that are roaming the building from the first one. And here’s where things started to fall apart for me. I don’t know why, but I wasn’t scared when the infected people would pop out of nowhere, it was almost too predictable as to where they would be and what was going to happen. The only few parts that truly freaked me out were towards the end with the chick with the hammer (you’ll know what I’m talking about). There was also a scene between the kids, a firefighter and an infected that kept me on the edge of my seat, but not really because it was “scary”. I didn’t get that same feeling of uneasiness that I got with the first one, maybe it was because the story was pretty much already set and we now kind of knew what to expect, where as everything in the 1st one was new to us as well as the characters so we were all trying to figure out what was going on.
And that leads me to my biggest disappointment with this movie (this is a major spoiler). I was actually so disappointed with this that it almost ruins the first one. So it turns out that the guy that the SWAT team has brought in with them turns out to not be a scientist, but a priest. And you guessed it, the “infected” people aren’t so much infected as they are possessed by some sort of demon. There are even some scenes that could have been lifted directly from The Exorcist. I thought this explanation of the infection was extremely lame and seemed like a cop out. And then towards the end when they are using the night vision on the camera to see things they couldn’t see without it…. even more lame. Everything about the infection and the modified rabies virus from the first one kept the movie grounded in a sort of reality which made it that much scarier, where as the introduction of demons and possessions, and being able to see completely different rooms with night vision, just took me out of the movie completely.
So I still don’t know how I really feel about the movie. I kind of liked how it ended, seeing as how I was already disappointed with the direction they took it. I thought the camera work was pretty good and I liked that they spun it a little differently than just 1 camera’s POV like in the 1st one. But after knowing the outcome of the story now, I would have much rather not watched the second one and just been left with the cliffhanger from the original.
So what did you guys think of [REC]2? Did you like the direction the story took? I’m really curious as to how other people felt about it so please leave some comments and let me know.