V/H/S (2012) – 3.5/5

Vile, disgusting movie with a few decent scares here and there and some really good setups, but terrible writing that ultimately confuses more than it terrifies. Lots of attractive half/fully naked chicks, though, and a good idea for a film despite most of the stories not making any sense at all. And the visuals were pretty good too at times, even with the super low-budget and occasionally obvious and cheesy CGI.

If anything, though, the film is more a series of tragedies than outright horrors. You often feel more bad for the characters and the various horrible and disgusting things they go through than scared, though the first person nature of the thing certainly adds to the terror of the given situations. And the acting too isn’t too bad either; some of it, at times, is obvious and awful, especially in the “Friday the 13th” homage set in the woods, but most of it is quite realistic, probably due to the said first person hand-held nature of it all.

And it’s more uncomfortable than scary; you just feel bad for these characters after a while, and disgusted at how graphic some of the gore is. Some parts made me feel a little sick frankly, with all the shaking and strange sounds and blood and body parts and graphic imagery all over the place. Geez. Had the writing not been so terrible I might have not actually been able to handle the thing. Luckily, it’s pretty bad, though many of these stories start promising enough. The one with the **SPOILERS** Skype like interface **END SPOILERS** in particular was pretty dang brilliant until the end. What a great, clever, suspenseful use of an otherwise extremely limited form of storytelling, but the ending, god. What the hell happened? They don’t even explain it properly, and what they do explain makes no sense. And this is the case with almost every single other story here except **SPOILERS** the first one. **END SPOILERS** Come on, people; leaving things hanging this much isn’t artistic or edgy, it’s just lazy and annoying.

Overall, not as scary or disturbing as it could have been were it better written. Much better written. And kind of misogynistic at times. Some of the shorts have their moments, like the first one, and the one with the video chat, and the last one with the guys looking for a party. Heck even the main plot was interesting until the end where…what happens? Huh? Really? Is that really how you’re going to end it? Ugh. Such a promising concept for a movie, wasted on terrible, terrible writing. Put some effort in it, guys, come on. You’re supposed to be at the forefront of horror here. And that red-ban trailer you put together was so damn good. Nearly perfect.

Disappointing. Not terrible, but could have been so much better.

 

 

 

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