I know this is going to make me sound like a huge poseur, but I definitely saw Quarantine before I saw [REC]. I’ll admit to being a bigger poseur by not knowing that Quarantine was a remake of [REC] until after I had seen it and done some Googling. Obviously I made it a point to see [REC] and figure out which one was better. Both films are very entertaining, with minimal differences, but for a couple of reasons, I found [REC] to have been more successful. One reason was that in Quarantine, we spend about 15-20 minutes getting to know the lead characters as they spend time together at a fire station. The call then comes in about some sort of trouble and then the movie gets rolling. The original [REC] reduces 20 minutes to about 5, and the movie is on its way. You realize that whole “establish an emotional connection with the characters” was just American bullshit that was unnecessary in the first place. I also think that not knowing Spanish made the original a lot more chaotic. Obviously a movie made in Spain with Spanish speaking characters wasn’t some symbolic message, but approaching the movie as an American viewer, I felt that the insanity and chaos was heightened because I could only read the subtitles so fast, and there are multiple scenes of multiple people shouting. I was lucky enough to see the theatrical Midwest premiere of [REC] 2 last week, and I had just as much fun as in the first.
What an ugly little girl. Which reminds me, Wolfgang, how’s your daughter? Not saying she’s ugly, just, ya know, uhh…..
The original was shot from the point of view of a camera guy who goes into an apartment building that has a mysterious infection spreading. It is described as being like rabies, with its victims getting extremely aggressive, even zombie like. The victims inside are locked in by the army, police, and ministry of health. Then hilarity ensues, involving lots of blood and puke and violence. This movie starts where that one left off. It opens with a SWAT-esque team going into the contaminated building with someone from the ministry of health, supposedly to figure out what’s going on and extract survivors. Shockingly, the group is attacked about 20 minutes into the movie, and the person from the “ministry of health” is from a different ministry…like, he’s a priest. Turns out that the cause of these “infections” were traced back to the demonic possession of a girl who was taken to the building and was being studied to see if they could find a biological cure for her possession. They also found out that the host demon could infect other people through saliva and blood, and those individuals could be controlled as well. What then follows is lots of blood, guts, yelling, guns, more blood, demons, jumping, night vision, helmets, and awesomeness.
The demons would have gotten away with it, if it wasn’t for you meddlin’ kids!
I didn’t add in a “spoiler alert” when it comes to the demonic possessions, because it really happens quite early in the film. After having seen the original and the American remake, I was definitely shocked to find out that it wasn’t a viral/biological infection, but rather a supernatural one. I believe my reaction was something like: “Wait, they are saying there are demons infecting one another and running around all batshit insane? That’s………….AWESOME! HOLY SHIT THAT’S AWESOME!”. They really took a risk on making this exorcism/zombie movie combination, but I really think it paid off for everyone involved. The P.O.V. shots were obviously terrifying, and the gore was highly entertaining. I was lucky enough to see this in theaters and there wasn’t a single gruesome death that didn’t result in cheering and applause. If you get the chance to see this film, or the original [REC], or hell, even Quarantine, I highly recommend all three.
Wolfman Moon Scale