Thursday, 24 April 2014

‘V/H/S 2’ (2013)

I watched this the other night, a night when Elana would only stay asleep if I was holding her and walking backwards and forwards. Half three in the morning isn’t a great time to be awake but it’s the best time to be watching horror films, even if they aren’t actually that good.
Okay, that’s not entirely fair on ‘V/H/S/2’, a collection of four short horror features connected by a story of private detectives that come across a stash of old video tapes and watch them in order to try and solve a case. The framing narrative is rather weak and doesn’t seem to have a lot of point to it other than to get us to the videos themselves. There are a couple of moments that are meant to make you jump but they are signposted so clearly that they do anything but… On to the films themselves and it’s a case of ‘six of one and half a dozen of the other’. Two aren’t up to scratch while the other two are very well done indeed. I would say that though as one of them features zombies… ;o) Here are the films then…

‘Phase 1 Clinical Trials’

A man is fitted with a camera in his eye and ends up seeing a lot more than he bargained for... While there were some moments that really made me jump I couldn’t get away from the fact that I’ve seen this all before  (in ‘The Eye’ which was brilliant, give it a go) and that sense of tiredness in the concept overshadowed the moments of genuine fear.

 ‘A Ride In The Park’

A man goes for a bike ride in the park and is attacked by the living dead… Now I know I keep saying that I’m getting tired of zombies and I am, the whole thing has been done to death. I really got a lot out of ‘A Ride In The Park’ though, with its slow build-up of tension showing off some un-nerving moments and exploding into a bloody climax with some surprises. I also loved the way the helmet-cam gives you a little insight into what zombies get up to when they’re not chasing the living. Okay, the answer is ‘not a lot’ but even so, I just loved the way it was shot.

‘Safe Haven’

The highlight of the film for me, if you can call a story of suicide cults and demon births a highlight… It was though, the directors hold nothing back and you’re literally assaulted by a full on stream of shock  and gore that you can’t take your eyes off. Every time you think it’s done, something else happens and I couldn't help but watch. Absolutely amazing (if you could call it that, you know what I mean…) and one that I can’t stop thinking about.

 ‘Slumber Party Alien Abduction’

This is a tough one to call. ‘Slumber Party Alien Abduction’ has loads of genuinely creepy moments that are spoiled by the aliens being announced by a deafening horn. It makes you jump once and then it gets tiresome very quickly. By the end, I was severely tempted to mute the TV and see if that made things any better but the film ended soon after that. ‘Slumber Party Alien Abduction’ could have been brilliant but, sadly, was too damn noisy to do the job it could have done.

‘V/H/S 2’ was really hit and miss then but when it hit the spot it was superb (which just made the ropey bits even more irritating). I’ll have to go back and give ‘V/H/S’ a go now, has anyone seen it?

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