FINAL GIRL explores the slasher flicks of the '70s and '80s...and all the other horror movies I feel like talking about, too. This is life on the EDGE, so beware yon spoilers!

Apr 30, 2008

wait...what?

You might know by now that for months and months I've had a metaphorical anticipation boner for the Spanish film [REC]. Some of you have seen it and have raved about it, which has only made my situation more...urgent.

I was checking out what's up over at Mermaid Heather earlier, and apparently at a Prom Night screening she caught a trailer for something called Quarantine...which seems to be a remake of [REC], yes? Is this news to you as well, or has it been public knowledge forever and I'm woefully behind the curve? That's entirely possible. I'm only cutting edge 86% of the time, and right now most of my cutting edge-ness is being utilized in my hair product choices. Or...is everyone pretending it's not a remake and the amazing, identical similarities are a madcap series of co-inky-dinks?

Why does the Quarantine trailer need all the blah blah blah? Why has it been remade to begin with? Because people hate subtitles? Reading is fucking fundamental, y'all!

[REC]





Quarantine


34 comments:

Bill Walsh said...

Stacie, to a guy who doesn't read, the world is a closed book.

spazmo said...

Don't be so hard on yourself. When you think about it, even the sharpest machete is no more than 50% cutting-edge at any given time.

86% pretty much makes you a lightsaber.

Chick Young said...

Stacie,

My doctoral dissertation canonizes the Spanish horror film (1968-77) with a good deal on recent trends as well. My friend Don May (who is pals with Jaume Balagueró, I guess they got on really well at Fantasia) and I sat down to watch .Rec at the end of March and we were sadly aware that it was being remade and that the NTSC version was being blocked. The film is incredible. Derivative no doubt, but it also shows complete mastery of the genre. Let me know when you see it, I'll be ANXIOUS to read your review. I fucking loved every minute of it - it made me jump (yes JUMP!) on a few occasions. Well, any film that can make an old genre lover like me jump 4 feet deserves limitless praise. I think you'll LOVE every tense and frightening minute of it. All the best, Chick

kelkane said...

I recommend [REC] to everyone I know. It is truely a scary, tense ride.I will keep an open mind about the remake but I am bitter we will never get to see the original on the big screen. It will hit dvd in the early fall. That comes from the directors of the remake who are the guys who did The Poughkepsie(?)Tapes. I am curious to see how their version turns out. Btw, I really like your style of writing. If I like girls, you would be my kind. Take care

Queen Anthai said...

I loved the trailer for [REC] when I first saw it. Why can't I find it on DVD anywhere?

Sam said...

Hey all,

I saw (Rec) at the cinema in London last night and I am SO damn sorry that you guys aren't gonna get to see the original on the big screen. From what I can see, the US version looks almost like a shot for shot (yet faaaaar inferior) remake.

I was almost under my seat from the tension at one point! An absolutely terrifying thrill ride that I can't wait to see again.

Can you not defy your country and arrange a viewing trip en mass to my fair city??

Sam x

Scott said...

It does look like a shot-for-shot remake. Not sure how it can be labeled "faaaaar inferior" (sic) sight unseen, though. Granted, [Rec] is a terrific movie and remakes of terrific movies usually suck, but I for one am willing to wait until I've actually seen "Quarantine" to judge it.

Chris Cooke said...

Hey I saw [Rec] a couple of weeks ago - again as I am in the UK it was great to see it getting a proper across the nation, subtitled big screen cinema release - so it's a pity not to see the original in it's full glory - while Quarantine does appear very, very, very similar the trailer spills the beans on one of the twists for no good reason, which troubles me! Stacie - get ahold of a DVD first of the Spanish original - it's certainly derivative and aware of it's homages, but the atmosphere it creates is controlled expertly by a directorial double act that is truly inspired as two fine directors find a great synthesis of themes and ideas - plus it has a great ending (helped by an understanding of some Spanish it seems)... but it's great stuff. I for one think that watching alone, late at night and on television may complement the way it's been made.

Wes Fierce said...

"American Horror Fans, Hollywood Thinks You're Dumb"

http://thevaultofhorror.blogspot.com/2008/04/american-horror-fans-hollywood-thinks.html

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

I'm looking forward to seeing [REC] although it didn't appear to be released up here in Toronto.

bill s. preston esquire said...

you cant be too hard on them for remaking this, since you can't wait to see "the strangers" which looks like a remake of "them"

christine said...

I didn't know about it either, don't feel too bad (although I am notorious for being late to the party). I knew (rec) wasn't going to get a chance on american screens, I guess now I know why. It makes me made. It's the same deal with the Swedish film everyone and their grandma is raving about, "Let the Right One In". They are already planning a Hollywood remake. Why can't we have the originals? Kinda infuriating.

Stacie Ponder said...

Well, the difference, Bill S., is that no one is copping to The Strangers being a remake. As far as I know, it's not. I think maybe both films happen to be based upon the same true story? It's like The Girl Next Door- two films based on that book/true story that were released almost concurrently, and neither is a remake of the other.

Additionally, Them was screened for critics here (that's how I saw it)...whether or not that led to a limited theatrical engagement, I'm not sure. The film is also available on DVD already and has earned rave reviews.

[REC], however, is being all but ignored by American distributors in lieu of the remake's release- no screenings, etc, simply because audiences "don't want to watch subtitled or dubbed films". I think that sucks.

Piper said...

Effin A Stacie,

I just crapped myself a bit watching REC. And then I got a little unscared watching Quarantine. You're right, why do they have to explain everything? Have they learned nothing from J.J. Abrams?

This has to be a remake. Same tank top. And of course the US version has to have some kind of scary cliffhanger at the end of the trailer reminding us that we are indeed watching a trailer.

Adam said...

According to IMDB (which we all now is a credible source) Quarantine is a remake of [REC]. Damn, that was fast. Pretty soon they'll be making remakes of films that haven't even come out yet. Would that then make them prequels?

Fox said...

Sorry... but what is so unique about *[REC]* that keeps it from being a retread of the Zombie genre already?

Not that I mind retreads, but from *Night of the Comet* to this years *The Signal* and *Diary of the Dead* it doesn't really seem like we're on groundbreaking territory here with *[REC]*.

Aren't all zombie films - at this point - just variations on the same premise?

unclemike said...

I'm probably going to skip Quarantine in the theaters and buy [REC] from amazon.co.uk when it comes out across the pond.

Same with the news about Paranormal Actvity--Dreamworks bought the film, not to release it wide, but to re-make it with a bigger budget. Don't know why they'd spend the money, since the original is supposed to be the creepiest, scariest, most dread-filled experience in a long time.

But I stopped trying to understand Hollywood logic years ago.

Rob said...

The main difference between the two trailers is that the one for "[REC]" doesn't give away far too much. The one for "Quarantine" does. Big time.

Rob said...

Oh, and [REC] is findable online if you look. Try veoh.com. Search for "rec movie horror." The version you will find has hilariously... approximate subtitles, but they're still understandable.

Fox said...

I think it's less to do with Hollywood than with the audience.

True, Hollywood plays a role in breeding and molding movie minds, but when it comes down to it, there isn't a market for a film like *[REC]*. Even arthouses won't touch it.

Outside of NYC, specialty theaters like the Alamo Drafthouse in Austin, and festivals, it wouldn't be worth the reel rental fee for your average theater. Nobody - outside of film buffs - would come.

The oversaturation of horror films in the DVD market doesn't help either. That is a much more profitable trend for the studios than taking a shot at a theater run.

ARBOGAST said...

This whole [REC] business gives one Pause.

Fox said...

ha! ... well played, Arbogast, well played! :)

Old Dark Housekeeper said...

Fox said...

Sorry... but what is so unique about *[REC]* that keeps it from being a retread of the Zombie genre already?

Not that I mind retreads, but from *Night of the Comet* to this years *The Signal* and *Diary of the Dead* it doesn't really seem like we're on groundbreaking territory here with *[REC]*.

Aren't all zombie films - at this point - just variations on the same premise?


Yeah, I feel the same way about baseball...

MaryKate said...

The titles alone imply vastly different movies, or at least different ways to experience the same thing. Post-Blair Witch I'm weary about camera's eye view movies, but [REC] seems to handle it well...at least from the trailer here. Is it not available on DVD in the states at all?

I hate to automatically dog American remakes, but hey, don't fix what ain't broke. (Dialogue spoken in something other than English ≠ broke!)

Heather Santrous said...

Thanks for the plug Stacie. You were already one up on me because I didn't even know about [Rec]. From what you said, you have been talking about it so maybe I just need to pay attention better. Just one question though, does this mean you won't go see Quarantine?

Ray said...

You can't just say that there's no market for [REC], and leave it at that. Studios (smart ones at least) find ways to create interest in movies-appealing to niche audiences, well-crafted advertising, etc. The reason that foreign films usually die at the box office is because studios don't want to spend any damn money promoting them. The same holds true for independent horror like Hatchet, Teeth, or The Signal. All of them had very limited ad campaigns, with no intention of ever expanding their release beyond the usual 'select cities'. And of course, they fail to make enough money, thus justifying the rationale for burying them in the first place.

"Even arthouses won't touch it." Really, a well-made, genuinely scary horror film that actually frightens its audience? I can't imagine why there ,wouldn't be some kind of market for it. The truth is, like someone mentioned with "Paranormal Activity" above, it's being shuffled off to a quiet DVD release so the studio's own (likely inferior) version can get the theatrical release. Hell, the remake of "Paranormal Activity" is even being called "Paranormal Activity". I have heard nothing but raves for that movie, but not only is it never going to see a single theater, but it's getting the ultimate insult-losing its name. Now, most people will never even realize it exists.

Bob Turnbull said...

Sigh, yeah...It's not overly surprising but still a bit depressing.

Here's a great trailer for [rec] I had found awhile ago - it doesn't show anything from the movie, but it makes me want to see it so bad. And it really pisses me off that I won't be able to have that kind of shared experience with others in a theatre...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfgZlMYj_NU

JOSEPH CAMPANELLA said...

Both these movies look equally horrible. I don't know originally whose idea it was to use shitty lighting and shake a video camera and call it a movie, but whoever it was, I hope they get eaten by a zombie. Or at least get their finger cut off by a lawnmower that stopped working, but when they pick it up to fix it, starts working again.

ps. What's with the final shot of the QUARANTINE trailer? What are they doing? Ripping off Gondy films now?

Chris Cooke said...

Hey Fox:

"Sorry... but what is so unique about *[REC]* that keeps it from being a retread of the Zombie genre already?"

Well, for starters: the entire ending and the many twists which I won't reveal here... PLUS - when the film does remind you of a zombie film it reminds you that it's a very. very, VERY good one! and then, like I say, the ending and all the twists come along!

spazmo said...

Watched [REC] this weekend, and was sorry to find myself a tad disappointed. Granted, it was a crappy bootleg version where you could hear random theatre-goers coughing, but still...

Come to think of it - if I could hear them coughing, why didn't I hear them screaming?

Stacie Ponder said...

"Just one question though, does this mean you won't go see Quarantine?"

Hmm. Knowing me, I'll miss it out of pure laziness or brokeness or forgetfulness! I think I'm gonna hold out for the original, since everyone is raving about it. It's good to see Jennifer Carpenter working, though!

I'm a big fan of the hand-held stuff when it's done well, which isn't really too often. Surprisingly, there are a couple of super short videos in YouTube that are "real" encounters with monsters or what have you that are actually pretty good. I like this one. Sometimes I'm so easy to please!

This is the first time I'm hearing about Paranormal Activity, also. Must...check...it out! You guys rock!

I agree, there IS an oversaturation of zombie films (sooooo many low budget ones on the market...), but I'm all for any movie in any subgenre that's scary, and I think that's always going to be possible, even in a glutted market.

Evol Kween said...

European horror often trumps US horror me thinks. But I'll totally see quarantine anyway because it has Dexter's sister in it. Word.

Adeem said...

Nice post but with lots of ghosts. Hey just joking. Your blog has great content to read so keep posting and rocking.

Dale said...

I went to see Quarantine first, because I wanted to see it in a theatre and watching it after the superior original would kinda ruin it for me. Plus, Jennifer Carpenter is awesome on Dexter - as she was here. The last fifteen minutes or so were just terrifying, and I really enjoyed the whole thing. Which should go for [REC] too, and I'm going to see it at some point and expect it to be even better, but still, I'm so glad I went to Quarantine.