20 items from 2014
It is unusual to be anticipating a third sequel to a horror franchise quite this much. However the [Rec] series from directors Paco Plaza and Jaume Balaguerno made the most of the hand held camera horror trend with two tense instalments investigating a quarantined apartment block. A third film followed with Plaza going solo with a prequel, breaking free from the first person format and ending up with a decent, if slightly less fearsome film.
Now the end is properly nigh with Balaguerno’s solo effort, the final chapter in the series, [Rec] 4: Apocalypse. This new poster isn’t exactly what I expected, looking a little too Wild Things for me, but as you’ll know (because you’ve seen the trailer) our heroine of sorts Ángela Vidal (Manuela Velascoa) is taken on board a ship as everything landbound goes to hell in a flesh eating handbasket.
Here’s your poster, »
- Jon Lyus
In an odd turn of events, this list has a number of films that don’t have English-language titles. They just go by whatever the original title was. Good for us. What we do see in this portion of the list is a few movies that weren’t really created specifically to be horror films, but their themes and visuals made it so. In addition, we have some heavyweights of non-horror cinema creating horror films that push the genre all the more upward. “Thinking man horror,” if you will.
20. Le locataire (1976)
English Language Title: The Tenant
Directed by: Roman Polanski
Roman Polanski has made one of the greatest horror “trilogies” of all time with 1965′s British production Repulsion, 1968′s American production Rosemary’s Baby, and 1976′s French production The Tenant, completing his “Apartment Trilogy.” Unlike the other two, Polanski actually stars in The Tenant as Trelkovsky, a reserved man renting an apartment in Paris. »
- Joshua Gaul
This may well be a record year for Spanish-language cinema, fueled by booming Latin American pay TV sales, buoyant U.S. VOD, rising demand in Asia and Eastern Europe and synergies from Brazil’s 2014 FIFA World Cup.
But back in the Old World, Spanish producers are still struggling to finance their movies, with faltering subsidy and television funding and dwindling revenue streams due to vanishing DVD sales and widespread piracy.
Hedging their bets, Spanish producers increasingly focus on popular genres executed for the widest possible audience.
“What works now in Spain are comedies and romantic comedies,” says Imagina’s Geraldine Gonard. “People need to laugh. But these films are the hardest projects to sell abroad.”
A key test will be Spain’s all-time local blockbuster “Spanish Affair,” sold by Vicente Canales’ Film Factory.
“This is a unique phenomenon, like France’s ‘The Intouchables’ or ‘Welcome to the Sticks’,” Canales says. »
- Martin Dale
A new trailer has been released for [Rec] 4: Apocalypse.
Manuela Velasco returns as reporter Angela in the fourth and final instalment of the horror franchise.
Velasco's character did not appear in the third film Genesis, which dropped the first two films' found footage style and took place at a wedding.
The first two films were directed by Jaume Balaguero and Paco Plaza, while Plaza took the reins of Genesis, adopting a more slapstick style.
Balaguero has helmed the fourth film, which returns to the first two films' main storyline and brings back a darker atmosphere.
It sees Angela getting rescued and taken to an oil tanker base, before the quarantine is broken and survivors are attacked by infected victims of the zombie virus.
[Rec] 4: Apocalypse will be released in Spain on October 31. A UK and Us release date is yet to be confirmed. »
First announced together way back in 2010, the original idea was that [.Rec] 3: Genesis and [.Rec] 4: Apocalypse would film more-or-less concurrently and be released close together. Clearly that didn't pan out, since Genesis arrived a couple of years ago. But here, finally, is a trailer for Apocalypse, picking up Manuela Velasco's story, left hanging at the end of [.Rec] 2.Series honchos Jaume Balaguero and Paco Plaza directed the first two [.Rec]s in tandem, but went solo for the prequel and this threequel, taking one each. Plaza handled Genesis, so Apocalypse is Balaguero's, and sees Velasco's Angela rescued and taken to an impromptu base set up on an oil tanker. Inevitably, however, the quarantine doesn't hold, and the survivors are soon once again faced with infected victims of the franchise's unique, peculiarily Catholic zombie rabies virus.Genesis abandoned the first two films' chaotic handheld found footage style after its first few minutes, »
It feels like we’ve been waiting forever, but Jaume Balaguero’s final installment in his & Paco Plaza’s horror series is finally here! [Rec 4]: Apocalypse looks to be taking the terror out to sea, picking up where it left off with Angela (once again played by Manuela Velasco) awaking on a ship filled with an infected horde. The found footage narrative of the first two (and half of [Rec 3]) is notably gone, but I’m not complaining. The scale of this look pretty big and wild, and I cannot wait to see how it all ends.
Watch the trailer below!
[Rec]4: Apocalypse kicks off at the point where Ángela Vidal, the only survivor of the terrible infection, is evacuated from the building. When the situation finally appears to be under control, chaos prevails once again and the seed of evil takes on new and horrible forms.
- Justin Edwards
Hey wait, they're still making these? In case you missed out on the barely there sensation, in 2007, Jaume Balagueró and Paco Plaza turned horror heads with their riff on the found footage genre, "[Rec]." It was reasonably effective take on the style, and it caused enough of a stir that two years later Hollywood dropped a remake that no one really cared about. But the original franchise kept going with "[Rec] 2" dropping in 2009, followed by "[Rec] 3: Genesis" in 2012. And now another installment is coming, "[Rec] 4: Apocalypse," with Balagueró back behind the camera for this time since the first sequel, and it looks like not much has changed. This time around Manuela Velasco, also returning from part two, is back in the lead, with the story now relocated to an oil tanker (!?) where some untrustworthy doctors have unleashed the virus packing undead once again. It seems like another excuse to contain a lot »
- Kevin Jagernauth
After showing us a bloodbath of a wedding reception in [Rec] 3: Genesis, the influential Spanish zombie franchise is going back to its roots in its fourth entry with familiar faces behind and in front of the camera. We’ve shown you a teaser poster and a behind-the-scenes video from [Rec] 4: Apocalypse, and now we have the first official trailer for you to check out:
“Angela Vidal, the young television reporter who entered the building with the fireman, manages to make it out alive. But what the soldiers don’t know is that she carries the seed of the strange infection. She is to be taken to a provisional quarantine facility, a high-security installation where she will have to stay in isolation for several days. An old oil tanker, miles off shore and surrounded by water on all sides, has been especially equipped for the quarantine.”
Actress Manuela Velasco reprises her »
- Derek Anderson
Aside from "The Blair Witch Project," no film did found footage horror better than Jaume Balaguero and Paco Plaza's terrifying "[Rec]," which used a claustrophobic situation (a quarantined apartment complex) and a smart gimmick (after hours news report gone wrong) to heighten the terror. A pair of sequels, the first solid, the second less so, followed, and now the series comes to its conclusion with the ominously titled "[Rec] 4: Apocalypse." The trailer shows the return of Angela Vidal (Manuela Valesco), the plucky reporter protagonist of the first film and ensemble player of the second. Having survived the events of the previous films, Angela is brought to a quarantined oil tanker, but the soldiers on board don't know that she carries a strange infection. The film was directed by Balaguero, who ceded the previous installment to Plaza, and it seems to have abandoned the found footage format of the first two »
- Max O'Connell
Followers of the found footage genre may have been disappointed to find that Paco Plaza’s solo outing, Rec 3 Genesis, dropped the form just after all hell broke loose at a wedding. It was a smart move. It seemed to free up the director to tell a far more cinematic story and in doing so expanded the mythology which has proven a very solid foundation for the series.
Splitting up the final two films in the series with his co-director on the first two Rec films (Plaza took the prequel, Rec 4′s director Jaume Balaguerno takes the final chapter) was another shrewd move and today we’ve got our first look at what fresh hell we have in store as the Rec series lurches, bloody-mouthed, to a twitching halt.
We see a familiar face as Ángela Vidal (Manuela Velascoa) is taken aboard a ship to be examined. You can guess what happens next. »
- Jon Lyus
Found footage films get a bad rap - and worse reviews. But the genre combines the vitality of punk rock with the reach of a video viral, and it has earned, if not respectability, then at least a respectful reappraisal. Some found footage (hereafter Ff) films are, admittedly, unwatchable (see The Devil Inside or, better, don't). But others, such as recent West Country-set religious chiller The Borderlands, or Bobcat Goldthwait's creepy Bigfoot hunt Willow Creek (out on May 2), are closer to unmissable.
Beyond an ominous title card, Ff films require little backstory, and the genre has only a brief history of its own. An uncompromising, hand-over-the-camera-lens look at totalitarianism in Vietnam-era America, Peter Watkins' 1971 mock-doc Punishment Park is considered Ff's chief forebear. Ruggiero Deodato's still-troubling Cannibal Holocaust (1979), however, is the most striking early archetype. Following a gonzo film crew into tribal Amazonia, it puts video-nasty atrocities through a film-school filter, »
Let’s be honest here. Out of 10 “found footage” type films, you’re lucky if two or three are actually enjoyable. Why the characters in said sub-genre always seems to have to document Everything might have worked early on, when the style was created, by 2014, we’ve seen so many variations of it, that the films really have to think outside of the box to really resonate. My good friend Natty and I decided to each choose a few of the Pov style films that we actually Do enjoy, and tell you wonderful readers what they are and why we dig them. So, read on!
I know most of you will instantly debate whether or not Matt Reeves’ monster tearing shit up in New York film Cloverfield can be classified as a horror film, I will just say this: this is my article, so there. Cloverfield is not »
- Jerry Smith
Unveiled at Berlin’s European Film Market, Fear Factory’s first slate includes “Shrew’s Nest,” godfathered by Alex de la Iglesia, “Purgatory,” from “The Impossible” producer Apaches Ent., and “Damned Friday,” helmed by [Rec] director Paco Plaza.
Set up at Pokeepsie Films, the new production house of De la Iglesia and actress Carolina Bang, the ’50 Spain-set “Shrew’s Nest” turns on a agoraphobic woman (Macarena Gomez) who cares on her own for her small sister. Years pass until an attractive man (Hugo Silva) knocks on her door, begging for help. Her sister is now not so young. The man may never get out of the sisters’ flat alive. Esteban Roel and Juan Fernando Andres co-direct.
A psychological thriller turning on a baby-sitting gig from hell, »
- John Hopewell
News from Berlin's Efm is that one-half of the directing team of the [Rec] franchise, Paco Plaza, will helm Damned Friday (Maldito Viernes) later this year. Plaza has written it and already teased his fans in 2008 with the release of a mock trailer on YouTube that you can see below. Leticia Dolera, who plays the crazed bride in [Rec]3, will star.Adrian Guerra's Nostromo Pictures will produce with Spanish sales agent Film Factory apparently due to share the screenplay and design while still in Berlin. According to the Variety exclusive, the project is already fully financed and will be the first time Guerra will produce a non-English language film. Plaza promises just one thing when shooting begins in July, "I've shot a werewolf movie, a...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
The immediate reaction we horror fans have to any faux teaser trailer we dig is that we want to see it become reality, is it not? Following in the footsteps of Machete Kills and Clown, Rec co-director Paco Plaza is making such a desire come true. Read on!
A few years back, Plaza directed a 50-second faux teaser for a vampire film called Damned Friday (Maldito Viernes), which spawned a comic book and had many fans begging for a feature.
As reported by Variety, Plaza will indeed be directing a feature-length expansion on the teaser, which begins filming this coming July over in Spain.
The Spanish-language film is set to be shot in color, with Adrian Guerra attached as producer.
"I’ve shot a werewolf movie, a bunch of zombie films, »
- John Squires
Uniting two of Spain’s biggest genre talents, “[Rec]” co-director Paco Plaza will helm “Maldito Viernes (Damned Friday)”, with Adrian Guerra producing.
“Friday” begins filming in Spain in July from Guerra’s Barcelona-based Nostromo Pictures. Film Factory will unveil the screenplay and design at Berlin.
Penned by Plaza and fully financed, “Friday” expands on his 2009 B&W mock teaser trailer, which spawned a comicbook, and had fans begging for a feature.
Leticia Dolera, the chainsaw-wielding bride of “[Rec 3]: Genesis,” is a young woman who struggles with her family and boyfriend before becoming a vampire. “Friday” is a “ ‘Black Swan’-style drama applied to the vampire genre with a really strong central female character taking the audience on a gritty, emotional roller coaster,” Guerra said.
Pic will be a Spanish-language film shot in color, he added. It marks Guerra’s first non-English-language production.
“Some years ago I shot a fake trailer for »
- John Hopewell
Way back in 2010 a new horror anthology called Paris, I'll Kill You was announced. At the time it had a pretty impressive roster of directors on board: Joe Dante (Gremlins) Xavier Gens (Frontieres) Ryuhei Kitamura (Midnight Meat Train) Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo (Inside) Vincenzo Natali (Cube) Paco Plaza ([Rec]) Christopher Smith (Triangle) That is a mighty lineup of cool creatives from all over the globe, each with an undeniable knack for the horror genre. It's too bad, then, that this version of the movie never came to pass. Original producer Darryn Welch hasn't given up on the idea of a Paris-centric anthology, though. He's still trying to get it off the ground with a truncated set of directors and a new title: Fear Paris. Ahead of...
- Peter Hall
After movies like V/H/S and The ABCs of Death, I’m all for horror anthologies abiding by a particular theme. There’s something inherently fun about such a cornucopia of treats, as different directors populate one single film with so many distinctive styles and traits – as long as the segments set the stage for such fun. I’ll always give a horror anthology a try, from Chillerama to The Theatre Bizarre, which is why I’m happy to say we’ve got an exciting anthology coming our way with Fear Paris.
Newly announced, Fear Paris will join the likes of Joe Dante (Gremlins), Xavier Gens (Hitman/Frontier(s)), and Timo Vuorensola (Iron Sky), as they explore the horrific underworld of France’s iconic capital city. Here’s the full press release, accompanied by a tonal teaser below:
- Matt Donato
Directed by Gil Kenan
Written by David Lindsay-Abaire
Release Date: November 14th
Production recently wrapped on the Poltergeist remake with Gil Kenan (Monster House) in the director’s chair and Sam Raimi (Evil Dead) producing. Little is known as they continue to put the movie together in post-production, but we do have a few details, beginning with the cast which includes Sam Rockwell (Moon), Rosemarie DeWitt and Jared Harris. We are also told that the psychic Angina (played originally by Zelda Rubinstein), isn’t going to be revived for the remake. Instead, they are replacing her character with a team of paranormal experts. Based on a vague plot summary, it sounds like the central plot points of the original movie are intact but other characters are added in, such as Carrigan Burke, a host of a TV show called Haunted House Cleaners, who stands in as the movie’s skeptic. »
The big names in horror are often recognized by both the genre community and mainstream entertainment culture, showered with accolades by horror fans and film critics alike. Directors like John Carpenter, Tobe Hooper, and Wes Craven have secured their place in film history, but many more talented directors go largely unsung for their hard work and noteworthy contributions to the genre. To remedy that, we recently kicked off a recurring segment that gives much-needed credit to those groundbreaking horror filmmakers who aren’t always given the praise they deserve. [You can check out part one here and part two here.] Since the first two installments proved popular, we're back with another round, and this time we present not five, but six more of our favorite underrated genre film directors. Mike Mendez Director of The Gravedancers and Big Ass Spider, Mendez and frequent collaborator Dave Parker (Coldwater, The Hills Run Red) helped to inspire the popular Showtime series Masters of Horror, but »
- Tyler Doupe
20 items from 2014
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