Saturday, January 28, 2012

Horror Film Review

Phase 7 (2011):  Horror flick from Argentina (deal with the subtitles).  It's less 28 Days Later and more Contagion, meaning that instead of worrying about zombies, the humans need to worry about each other.  That this movie comes from the producers of Paranormal Activity was not a selling point for me.  The opposite, in fact.  Nevertheless, I reserved judgment.  Some day, I may learn.

So, married couple Coco and Pipi (I'm not making that up) are on a trip to the grocery store when people flood into the place and start clearing the shelves.  The couple are oblivious.  They also fail to notice the unusually high  number of emergency vehicles on the road while driving home.  They finally get a clue when someone calls and tell them to turn on the TV.  A viral pandemic is sweeping the globe, prompting the country to upgrade their emergency condition to Phase 5 (they do jack it up to the highest level, Phase 7, eventually).  This is similar to the DEFCON system our military uses (you've seen Wargames so you know).  Anyway, Coco and Pipi's apartment building is quarantined and that's when the trouble really begins.

One neighbor is Zanutto, an older guy who at first seems normal enough but ends up crazier than a shithouse rat.  Another neighbor, Horacio, is a paranoid survivalist nut who, as it turns out, is the best person in the world to have across the hall from you.  When Zanutto snaps and begins taking out his fellow tenants with a double-barrel shotgun, Horico recruits Coco to help track him down and take him out.  Pipi isn't happy about it.  Actually, she's not happy about much at all.  She's quite annoying, acts as though everything that's going on is a personal inconvenience.  If she wasn't pregnant, I'd root for Zanutto and his shotgun.  Anyway, Horacio has a well-stocked hideout somewhere in the country and an insanely tricked-out truck to haul folks there.  That's about it.  Oh, except for President Bush (the first one).  They show him on the TV giving a speech about a new world order.  I still don't understand why that was included.  Maybe they think the U.S. is behind the epidemic.  Beats me.  And honestly, by then, I didn't care.


Acting:  No so much bad as overwrought and hammy.  In a movie like this, less is best.
Story:  About as original as the ninth Friday the 13th sequel. 
Direction:    Huh?
Production Values:  It cost about half a million bucks to make.  What the hell did they spend it on?  Maybe these are A-list actors in Argentina.  The apartment complex is dreary and depressing.
Gore/FX:  Oh, right.  They did shell out some dough for a handful of excellent kill shots.  Zanutto's first kill is so unexpected and over the top, it left me speechless.  I gotta admit, it was pretty cool.
Scares:  Nah.
The Ending:  Predictable.  Lame.
The Verdict:  Should you see Phase 7?  If zombies had been involved, I'd say sure, what the heck.  Since there aren't, go watch Quarantine again.

My Rating:  2 out of 5 stars.

No comments:

Post a Comment