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Thursday, December 11, 2014

Movie Review: V/H/S: Viral

Are you ready for another anthology? In November 2014, we got another installment to a well known found footage flick.

Directing this 81 minute horror/thriller anthology is Nacho Vigalondo (Parallel Monsters), Marcel Sarmiento (Vicious Circles), Gregg Bishop (Dante the Great), Justin Benson (Bonestorm) and Aaron Scott Moorhead (Bonestorm).

Some of the cast is: Emila Zoryan as Iris, Justin Welborn as Dante the Great, Emmy Argo as Scarlett, Dan Caudill as Detective Gregory Hugues, Gregg Bishop as Documentary Director, Gustavo Salmeron as Alfonso, Marian Alvarez as Martha, Xavi Daura as Oriol (1), Esteban Navarro as Oriol (2), Nick Blanco as Danny, Chase Newton as Jason and Shane Bradey as Taylor.

While trying to capture the chaos of a police chase, people hurry to film everything in hopes to make
the next viral video. What happens next, no one saw coming...

Back in 2012 a found footage film was made that found an audience, which meant... sequels would be born. Now, like a lot of anthologies, not every segment was great, but as a whole the V/H/S (2012) film was good. Then came the sequel, V/H/S 2 (2013), which was s-o-m-u-c-h better. V/H/S/ 2 was darker, the stories had more of a sick twist, yet the one thing that I liked about the first one, the sequel kept and used even more so in the stories... imagination. So, when I heard there was going to be another sequel I was all for it. Since they had stepped it up on part 2, I thought part 3 was going to be awesome! Well... I was wrong!

Because it's an anthology it has a long list of writers, like Nacho Vigalondo, Marcel Sarmiento, Gregg Bishop, Justin Benson, Aaron Scott Moorhead, T.J. Cimfel, Ed Dougherty (additional material for Vicious Circles) and David White.

Now, I'm not trying to knock any of the writers for their work, but as a whole, V/H/S 3 was actually a step backwards when comparing part 3 to it's prequels. Yes, there was still (some) imagintion to the story telling. Like Paraelle Monsters for instence, it was one of the segments I enjoyed watching. It moves a little slow but the bit of a twist it has pays off in the end.
                                                     

The next one I really liked was Dante the Great, here I liked the playthrough more than anything. It had the splash of blood to keep everything messy, a good storyline and didn't drag at all. They did an excellent job with this one when telling the story.

Bonestrom is another segment that just falls short. It opens with a few skaters pulling tricks, failing, and bitching at/to each other. It was like watching the television show Jackass, minus the laughs. When it finally takes off it tries to make up for all the wasted minutes up till now by cramming in all the violence and gore in one fell swoop. Which comes out looking like a spinning blur of action and blood sprays due to the fact that the skaters are wearing head cameras. This segment is the whole reason I don't like found footage films by the way. I couldn't root for the bad guy enough so everyone would just die and we would move on story wise.

Now, like the other V/H/S films, you have the one story that links everything together. This one is called Vicious Circle, and I didn't care for it one bit. It's this constant bombardment of quick mini clips to "help" show the chaos that's going around on the streets due to the viral video. While I understand where they were going with this one, the playthrough blew. Yeah it has some good gory moments, but gore can't always save a film and here's proof of that.
                                            

For those of you that have already watched V/H/S/ Viral, you maybe not remember the Gorgeous Vortex segment. Well, that's because it was cut from the film last minute. Apparently, they were wanting a "smoother run time", now I'm not really sure what that means, but either way... we didn't get to see it. However, be prepared to turn those frowns upside down because it's going to get added as an extra to the Blu-ray release!

Now, no I haven't seen the Gorgeous Vortex segment... I have however already seen the rest of what V/H/S 3 had to offer, which makes me torn inside a bit. Curiosity makes me want to see the missing segment, common sense tells me I'm not paying to watch that again just for a segment. So, I'll be hoping for a friend to see enough worth in this one to want to own it so I can catch it.
                                               

I do have to give props to the cast. I can't say I have any complaints about the acting jobs.  Even the skater segment made me feel like they were bored and then scared when things went down. Welborn did awesome as Dante the Great, and pulls off a good twisted individual. Also, the special effects in (almost) all the segments looked great. I'm not sure why they used CGI fire in the Bonestrom segment but it didn't blend in very well.

Overall, for the V/H/S fans, I'm sorry to say, this one isn't worth catching. As a V/H/S sequel... I was rather disappointed. For the horror fans that are looking for something new, well, if you can't find anything else, here you go. Because as a stand alone horror flick it wasn't bad, I liked a few of the stories they had to tell. I can safely say, I will not be making room on my shelf for this one.

It's rated R for violence, language and nudity.

 3 stars


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