I am huge fan of the original horror film “[REC],” which of course inspired the American remake “Quarantine.” So of course, once I heard that they were making the sequel I was up for it completely. The first film still scares me to this day, even though I’ve watched it several times. While I’m not sure I could have the same experience with [REC]2, the movie is still a great horror film.
[REC]2 starts almost immediately after the events that took place in the first film, and follows members of the S.W.A.T. team going to the apartment complex from the first film. Equipped with video cameras, they go in to find any remaining characters, and find the antidote to the virus that is spreading. We also follow a group of teenagers who end up finding their way in too. We see both vantage points, including the horror that both teams face.
The way this film is shot is breathtaking. In the first film, we had only one perspective from a TV camera. In this film, the S.W.A.T. team uses cameras that can link to mini cameras so that when one of the characters is on his own we can see what’s going on. Some may feel this doesn’t keep the realism, but I feel it does. Law-enforcement men take cameras with them all the time, and if you were a kid going into the apartment to see what’s going on, naturally you would have a camera. In terms of a technical achievement, [REC]2 definitely brings it up a level.
In the last film, what this virus may be is merely hinted at. In here, the directors move more into the mythology they created and expand it. We learn, without giving too much away, that the virus is much more than what we thought it was, something that leads back to the Vatican and religion in general.
While I wouldn’t say the second film is as scary as the first, it still carries the creepy atmosphere set up in the first [REC]. There are many scenes were you feel trapped and you can’t get out, and not knowing what’s gonna happen next.
I was very pleased that they brought back Angela Vidal (the main character) for the second film. I felt that the actress did well, and the directors brought her character to the right point, which leads into my next topic:
The ending. I was wondering how the film’s climax would be and if it would top the first film’s ending, which goes down as one of the most frightening things I’ve ever seen. The answer is yes, it does go in the right direction, shocks you, and sets you up for the third film.
The biggest problem that I can say about [REC]2 is that while characters in the first film were well developed and memorable, you don’t get that with these new characters. Sure we fear for them, sure they’re not bad characters at all. But none of them really made me think about them afterward, and the only character that was memorable was Angela Vidal, who was in the first film.
It felt a little too shaky at times for me. While it does keep the film tense especially in it’s more obscure moments, I really wished the camera could stop and calm down at a few points.
While [REC]2 may not be as incredible as the first, it still takes things that were done well in the first film and makes them better. So if you liked the first movie and you’re hyped for the second, you shouldn’t be disappointed.
I give [REC]2 a strong 8/10.