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|Index||17 reviews in total|
In summary, the acting was solid, the story was solid, and there was a lot of tension throughout. I am really surprised by the low rating for this movie. It is not a cheesy gore fest like a lot of movies out there. It uses the unknown and unseen which is often much more frightening. There are a lot of scenes where can only hear what is happening but that creates even more tension. You are along for the ride like the characters in the movie. They don't always see what is happening and you are left to wonder about the horrors of the unknown. Most of the characters are likable and you can feel sympathy for their plight. They don't fight and bicker constantly but spend most of their time trying to figure things out and survive. I thoroughly enjoyed this movie and think anyone who prefers good writing to gore will also enjoy it.
I saw this film premiere at the Edinburgh Film Festival. The film relates the story of a clinical trial that goes terribly wrong when the drug being tested produces horrific side effects. It's so refreshing so see a horror film firmly based on reality with a totally plausible story and no zombies, vampires, extraterrestrials, paranormal activity or monsters of any kind. The atmosphere and tensions in the isolated medical centre are well realised and the film shows little sign of its "micro-budget". Imaginative cinematography and sound design coupled with a very fast edit all help create an uneasy and claustrophobic world. There are slight flaws not all the characters are full realised and the script is occasionally too verbose but the team of NFTS graduates, who introduced Saturday's screening, have produced a very well crafted, disturbing and exciting film.
I wasn't quite sure what to expect from Ian Clark's first feature film, being familiar with his classic shorts, particularly the heart-warming 'Def ' and 'Jenny and the Worm'. This tense, tightly- controlled movie focuses on a drugs trial that goes horrifically wrong, with seven 'guinea pigs' from various backgrounds and professions coming together to test the drug Pro 9. The resulting tragic consequences lead to escalating tension as each participant realises they may be next in line to react violently to the drug. Blood and gore is in evidence here but never overdone. In fact, suggestion is all, and Clark's intelligent script, clever camera-work and the omission of overblown music bullying the emotions, allow the viewer's imagination free rein. Claustrophobic scenes of characters in close-up in tight spaces add to the tension, and although there are familiar and unfamiliar elements from the horror genre this is a new and refreshing angle on a neglected subject. There are some loose ends, there's some less than convincing acting at times, but 'Guinea Pigs' is a fine example of what can be achieved on a low budget. An impressive debut, and an exciting foretaste of Ian Clark's next film venture. I, for one, can't wait.
To be perfectly honest, after just viewing Ian Clark's
(director/writer) The Facility, I jumped onto IMDb to find that the
rating for it was exactly as I predicted. At the time of writing the
film sits at just under 5/10, perhaps not a true marker since it's
largely under seen and very few people have bothered to review it, but
not a surprising score thus far since familiarity of formula breeds
Plot basically finds a group of human guinea pigs enrolling for a two week trial at a remote research centre. They are to be injected with a new drug called Pro-9, and after their two week stay they will pocket a cool £2000 each. The group consists of the needy, the inquisitive, the bold and the stupid, and sure enough once night falls and the lock down commences, some of the participants get a reaction to the drug...
It follows the standard trajectory for such a set-up. Characters are introduced, we get to know them for half hour, you quickly learn who the A-Hole is, and then it's drug reaction time and we are thrust into murder death kill and locked in siege panic. Tis a time for heroes, maybe even some interesting revelations? Who will survive? If anyone? Maybe there's a twist in the tale as well?
For his debut feature film Ian Clark has played safe and utilised the low budget wisely. The pic shows him to have great promise in the horror genre, his keen sense of claustrophobic atmosphere is evident and carries the story well, and he knows how to construct a horror scene. He also gets more than solid performances from his lively cast, where Alex Reid (The Descent/Wilderness) is a reassuring presence.
It isn't over bloody, or even terrifying and full of boo jump shocks, but it tickles away at the nerve that doesn't like to be unhinged, and it has a good ending to boot! If you are searching for something new in the sub-genre of zombie/infected siege movies you will be disappointed, but this is actually better than some of those bigger budgeted sub-genre movies. While it marks Clark out as someone British Horror fans might like to keep an eye on. 6.5/10
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The Facility is about a group of people that are part of a drug trial.
Unforeseen side effects make the first and only night of a 14 days
Yeah, the drug induced guinea pig crazy people thing has been done. Yeah, there's nothing that makes this movie stand out from anything. But..., the simple fact that it was so..., simple, made it believable. I've never been a part of one of those trials but I have been on drugs that cause those kind of psychotically, aggressive, homicidal, suicidal feelings. So I can kind of understand how something like that could happen. This didn't happen. This was just a directors attempt to cause spite for big business pharmaceuticals. Which he failed. Overall, the acting was decent, it was actually a decent little film. It was just too short. This movie had some good things going on. Some good suspense building/built up, then it just ends by the director saying, "No one at Prosyntrex was prosecuted." That was it. I really wanted to like it better, but the way it ended just made it seem like the director just ran out of ideas and said f*** it.
"The Facility" has an eerie suspense in it, at least during the first half. Barnard, Coleman, Reid, Roberts et al are all capable performers and deserve much better scripts. Unfortunately I was able to see the direction the film was going by the time the first three "victims" had isolated themselves and gone bonkers as a result of the "pro-nine" drug they had been administered. It culminates in little more than a bloody mess, and a few brief follow-ups to signal that the 80-minute film is over - apparently it's based on an actual occurrence. I had been hoping for more of the eeriness, for example: when Katie discovers that Adam (Barnard) is actually one of the controls. The concept of people lured to a remote facility in order to earn money and finding out that they are being systematically tortured and left to their own devices is nothing new, but I thought that the first half-hour or so was very well done and suspenseful. Barnard is probably a star in the UK and is very expressive. He was also starred in "Citadel," which is even worse - louder and even less coherent and more gory than this ultimately disappointing thriller.
THE FACILITY is another film about a medical trial gone wrong, in which
a number of diverse characters are locked inside a medical research
institute and tested with some new drugs which have unusual and
unexpected side effects. This film has almost exactly the same story
and execution as the American-made LAST EXPERIMENT, which was also
I think the problem with such films is that they feel very loosely-plotted and predictable. The viewer knows from the very beginning that things are going to go violently wrong so the first half of the story, the set up, is very boring as a result. This film has a cheapness of look that's not helped by the clichéd blue filter used in all of the scenes to make the setting look cold and clinical.
Recognisable cast members are limited to Alex Reid (from THE DESCENT) and that's about it. The characters are thinly-drawn and quite unlikeable and that's even before the story gets going. And once things do kick off, they do so in a predictable way that remains predictable until the end. Sure, there's some gore and bloodshed here, but THE FACILITY is depressing more than anything else and certainly never horrific.
There was a very solid acting group here. Which I think is what draws you in from the beginning. But actors can only work with what they are given. Here it isn't much. You should recognize a familiar face in one of the actors as he just played a very decent agoraphobic father bent on saving his daughter. But there are too many moments in this film that leave you scratching your head and wondering "What? Why did this just happen?" Or worse, "Why didn't this just happen?" Those to questions haunt you through the film until it becomes a race to see if you can stand watching until the end. Honestly it was a good production team coupled with a great acting team wasted on a story that just wasn't there. I guess if you are one of those people that are literally obsessed with medical horror maybe. But even that is a stretch. Avoid this film but check out what else the cast has done. Because I can tell you it is better than this film.
'The Facility' is about a group of middle-to-upper class people who
volunteer to test a new drug called Pro9. If you can get over the fact
that all but one appear far too well-to-do to feel the need to be human
guinea pigs, then you have a reasonable premise for a horror/thriller
Naturally, things go wrong. The drug makes people go crazy and look like they're suffering from extreme sunburn. I'm sure the writer wanted to convey a message about how bad pharmaceutical companies are. However, if that was the 'hidden message' then it's a little too well hidden.
What transpires plays out like a low budget zombie film (almost like a rough prequel to 28 Days Later). When the side effects start to show themselves in the test subjects, they just go crazy (think 'The Infected' from 28 Days Later) and, due to the 'sunburnt-effect' make-up, appear like zombies.
What's left is people running and hiding from their former colleagues all the way through it.
That wouldn't be so bad if the characters were a little more defined. However, half the test subjects are pretty unlikable and the others (even the good ones we're supposed to root for) are just too bland for us to be bothered about. The acting is as good as you can expect, but it isn't the actors' fault that they have so little to work with.
It's not the worst horror/thriller film out there, it just probably could have been a little better.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The facility despite its micro budget and short length proves to be an actual entertaining movie that you feel could actually happen in real life and isn't to far fetched like the major budget movies being released these days.its the story about 8 strangers all going to a medical clinic to do some medical trials for some money and things go horribly wrong very quick.I went into this one expecting one of those terribly acted extremely cheap films made on a shoe-string budget you just turn off after 10 minutes because there down right disgraceful but i have to say i was surprised with this one.All of the cast put in some really top notch performances and really set the atmosphere to the film and the special effects were impressive as well but the script lacked a little and the film failed to make sense in some parts like were are the cellphones? I'm sure they owned them and brought them with them so why not call for help? and despite one of the characters having taken a placebo instead of the actual drug he fails to come up with the idea of leaving the facility and coming back with help and could of saved some lives in the end because there was an obvious escape route and in the film they actually do go outside only to return to the building. the writers could of done more to amp up the script and plot without costing them money but they failed to do so.despite this the film kept me interested and entertained for the 80 minutes it ran for and i enjoyed the old guy who sounds an awful lot like johnny Vegas.nice job well acted but could of been a lot better 6/10
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