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The Sunday Cult film Corner: The Last Broadcast (1998) and “REC” (2007)

04 Sep

Urgh….

So today we have been lying low, most due to the after effects of alcohol and the fun that you have with it. Went to the art show HOMIES IS WHERE THE HEART IS last night. It was really well put together, with just the right mix of creepy atmospherics and audio visual mind bending as an entire house (and it’s two recently discovered sub basements) were turned over to a legion of young local artists. There was also some “Absinthe” cocktails imbibed and i basically ended the night a drooling mess who had the extra annoying capacity for butting in when people where telling me things.

But that was yesterday. Today is a new day with new challenges and fun things to do and see. And as it’s Sunday that also means another fun instalment of the SUNDAY CUUUUUULLLLT FILM CORRRRRNAAAAAH!

And tonight, we have a double bill of features that centre around the nature of “Reality” and the medium of film. With the advent of digital recording,and the prevalence of 24 hours rolling news, often in many cases the media has become the message instead of the medium. Both tonight’s films show how a film can show and warp our reality of events as they happen.

The first film THE LAST BROADCAST is a 1998 low-budget horror directed  Stefan Avalos and Lance Weiler. The film is tell of a documentary film maker  who is investigating the strange case of the “Fact or Fiction” murders where a team from cable television show Fact Or fiction were murdered in local woods investigating a local legend known as the Jersey Devil. As the documentary unfolds, we see that the person who was tried and convicted for the crimes may have been falsely convicted and that the real killer may still be out there.

If the Last Broadcast, with its faux documentary vérité style, dark woods, and occult references sounds familiar, then that’s probably because it shares many similarities with the more well-known Blair Witch Project. However, TLB predates Blair Witch by at least a year and has a much more thoroughly thought out message in telling us how media and moving images can be changed and warped to alter our perceptions of events. In many ways TLB is more closely linked to the spin-off background documentary, The Story of Black Hills Disappearances.

The second  film tonight takes on the idea of media and REC, a 2007 Spanish horror film directed by Jaume Balagueró and Paco Plaza. REC tells of a TV reporter and her crew who are filming a documentary series about the night shift of a local fire station. They follow the crew to a call out to a housing block where a woman is stuck in her flat. However once inside they find things are far more serious as the woman attacks them and the building come under an armed quarantine. As other people fall “ill” and start turning into violent “Zombies”, the TV crew, firefighters and the residents find themselves in a fight for their lives.

REC was a low-level Spanish film that received a lot of attention and PR via torrent downloading and word of mouth. And it’s not hard to see why, they shaky hand-held first person style has numerous visceral shocks as the creatures literally get right into your face. the use of News TV crews and the premise of making a documentary, again takes us into a more grounded feel for reality. In some ways it’s has a passing resemblance to Ghostwatch, which sees a TV crew undertaking a live outside broadcast looking for ghosts. You definitely see parts of the likes of “Most Haunted” with it’S use of night vision cameras.  It also has a more than passing resemblance to the 1st person shoot ’em ups such as Doom and Duke Nukem. Very scary and very realistic.

 

So if you fancy getting some true down to earth shocks and thrills. Then put yer feet up and watch these two films. With the lights off. Go on, i dare you!

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2011 in Film

 

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