[Rec]2 is Jaume Balaguero's & Paco Plaza's answer to Mario Bava's Demons. Simply put. If you enjoyed the cult classics from the 80's Demons & Demons 2 then, more likely than not, you'll really find this film a treat. Now...I use the previously mentioned Bava films in comparison because of something interesting the creators did with [Rec]2. More on this later.
We are picking up right where the first film ended...opening with a SWAT team about to infiltrate the infected apartment building. We still have the concept of recording everything in place from the first film. Only this time it's used more like a "shoot 'em up" video game first person perspective with the cameras mounted on each SWAT team member's helmet. I mention this because it turns into a really effective adrenaline rush at times...especially given the claustrophobic environments of the building. Along wtih the SWAT team, we are introduced to a member of the Ministry of Health sent in to contain a blood sample of the original host of this "virus" that has caused such carnage. Enter a trio of highly annoying bratty fucktard kids who you will enjoy watching get dispatched because of their blatant stupidity. I've read several reviews knocking down this film for certain reasons.
First...the acting is kind of terrible in this film. Like almost laugh out loud terrible. The SWAT team sent in to deliver a can of whoopass to said infected and protect the guy from the Ministry of Health while he searches for his blood sample is pretty damn useless. Might've been more effective to send in the Ronald McDonald Gang instead. But, none-the-less....I enjoyed the film for its content...not necessarily the thespian talent involved. I loved both Demons & Demons 2 and those two films contained some of the worst acting in cinematic history.
By the by...did you know that Ronald enjoys the occasional sucky sucky....?
Anyway...back to the matter at hand. Another reason this film was slammed was for the continued use of the "shaky cam" made popular by The Blair Witch Project. I gotta say...shaky cam technology has come a long way as evidenced by the film Cloverfield. The first [Rec] wasn't too bad in its shaky cam execution and this entry certainly diminishes any feelings of nausea/seizure-inducing the viewer might experience. I watched [Rec]2 in High Definition and was actually impressed at some of the camera work delivered throughout the film.
Some of the main bashing of the film concerns the religious context involving demonic possessions and priests sent in from the church steering the [Rec] bus away from the "infected zombies" premise that the directors/writers established with the first film. Now here is where the viewer chooses which way to go when introduced with the spiritual fork in the road. Personally...I find it way scarier when you think that the one behind all of this evil is the devil himself. I mean...what the fuck?! It's one thing to be battling mindless infected zombies...shoot 'em in the head...procede with your day. With this premise it becomes a bit more dire when dealing with mindless puppets employed by a darker power. I enjoyed the direction this film went. As I said, it took me back to the Demons films I loved from back in the day. The first film teased with this premise towards the end with the newspaper clippings that Angela finds on the walls of the apartment in the attic. I remember first watching that film and sort of feeling like the film went from "ok..what the fuck are we dealing with here" to "holy fuck...all hope has officially vanished"...in a matter of seconds. The same is true here...only now the circumstances become much more hopeless when you realize that if this "thing" gets out...we're all fucked.
Ok...I realize that I'm being a little too dramatic with the "OMG we're all fucked" thing....but, isn't that what a movie is supposed to do?? Get'cha all scurred an' shit?? Well this one did. Bad acting and all. Oh...speaking of which. Does Angela make it back to this sequel? Well, I may be speaking a little bit spoilerish here but, no more spoilerish than if you were to click onto the IMDB site and take a gander at the cast listing of one Manuela Velasco who plays our favorite reporter on the scene at the wrong fuckin' place at the wrong fuckin' time. Let's just say that she actually becomes one of the main plot elements in the continuation of this story.
Well, fans of both films will be happy to learn that the two directors are already working on a third and fourth film in the series. The third entry is said to be a prequel to show where and how this craziness all started. And the fourth one is supposed to end the series taking place after the events of this second film. I for one am kind of excited about this news. I've watched the stupidly stupid Quarantine (dumbed down American remake of the original film) and was about as impressed as a Cleveland Cavaliers fan was watching ESPN last Thursday night. I mean...I guess it wasn't that bad....but, if you're gonna remake a film shot-for-shot...then, why even bother??? It's kind of a waste of money and time. So, I'm happy that the original film makers are making more of these films with exciting new directions and further twisting the premise so it maintains some weight to it. Perhaps Romero should pay attention and maybe take some notes (had to throw that one in there).
In closing I would like to tell you that [Rec]2 is being released in the US this week somewhere near your house and I urge you to seek it out and watch this film. A film like this only comes out a few times during a calendar year and it is your undying duty as the horror gorehound that you are to experience the magic this film offers. It's a zombie flick that's not a zombie flick that is a dash of The Exorcist but, not really. It's Demons for the those that have been holding out for decades for another taste of that hellish fun. See it with your mom....I did.
8 out of 10.
Thanks for reading,
Hey! You put that back in your mouth, Manuela! Silly girl.