[Rec] 2 (2009) – 4/5

Not as good as the first, but still pretty damn good, and scary, and gory. Though the story is a bit ridiculous, it still works in its own way, and man, what an ending. There’s just something about first person perspective in horror films that works really well.

The first 12-15 minutes of this movie are tense as hell. Waiting for something to happen is usually always scarier than having it actually happen, and this being a sequel to the insane first one, you know exactly what kind of horrors are in store for our unsuspecting characters. And when the horrors finally start coming out from the shadows, the encounters are just as intense as you’d expect, if not more so.

The acting in this film is also really freaking good. This is particularly impressive given that most of these scenes were probably shot in single takes, going with the whole hand-held, first person camera motif. But all the characters are solid, especially the main character of “The Doctor” who both looks and acts the part perfectly. These characters are in constant peril, and the film never gives them, or you, a chance to breathe. This is tension done well.

I also loved the look of the film; most of it is dark, with the only source of light coming from the camera, or various flashlights and light bulbs. Yet it works, and it looks beautiful in its own scary, obscure, “anything can pop out of a corner and try to kill you” kind of way.

The only thing that’s lacking is the story, which is essentially an expansion on that of the first. A lot of things left ambiguous in the first are explained here, and though some would argue against them having done so, the explanation they do give makes logical sense, in a silly sort of way. And the surprise appearance of a beloved character from the first film was a nice touch, though, again, I can see why some people would have a problem with it.

Still, if you can suspend your disbelief, especially near the end of the film, you’ll ultimately find it a pretty solid, entertaining, and damn fine scary film. Go see it. But watch the first one first.

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