Director: John Erick Dowdle
Cast: Jennifer Carpenter, Jay Hernandez,
Columbus Short, Greg Germann, Steve Harris, Dania Ramirez,
Rade Sherbedgia, Jonathon Schaech
RunTime: 1 hr 29 mins
Released By: Columbia TriStar
Rating: NC-16 (Some Gore And Disturbing Scenes)
Official Website: http://www.sonypictures.com/movies/quarantine/
Opening Day: 27 November 2008
reporter Angela Vidal (Jennifer Carpenter) and her cameraman
(Steve Harris) are assigned to spend the night shift with
a Los Angeles Fire Station. After a routine 911 call takes
them to a small apartment building, they find police officers
already on the scene in response to blood curdling screams
coming from one of the apartment units. They soon learn that
a woman living in the building has been infected by something
unknown. After a few of the residents are viciously attacked,
they try to escape with the news crew in tow, only to find
that the CDC has quarantined the building. Phones, internet,
televisions and cell phone access have been cut-off, and officials
are not relaying information to those locked inside. When
the quarantine is finally lifted, the only evidence of what
took place is the news crew's videotape.
Recently Golden Village cinemas had been screening two trailers
that look eerily the same. Not similar but almost exactly
same shot for shot trailer. The only difference was that the
leading lady and the entire cast were different and it was
in a different language. One of them was for [.REC] and the
other one is for this movie Quarantine. It shouldn’t
be too difficult to figure out that the latter is the Hollywood
remake. However, the eerie bit is that has the Hollywood Remaking
machine been churning out products faster now or are the original
foreign language films slower in reaching our shores?
any more digression, let’s focus on this remake which
had seen more thumb downs than up when compared to the original.
Hollywood remakes (particularly the horror genre) had been
dismissed from the day the project had been approved, as a
pale inferior product compare to the original one. A couple
of factors such as the Hollywood version normally overly simplified
the film subjects or events to cater to those Americans who
are too lazy to read subtitles or think for that matter. A
lot of intricate matters had been watered down to satisfy
the lowest denominator which to movie lovers is not exactly
a good thing.
such pre judgments are sometime unfair for a film product
before it’s given a chance to present itself and for
that matter, I am pleased to inform that this review is untainted
from the original film, [.REC].
start with what was impressive in this 'third' shaky cam film
after Blair Witch and Cloverfield.
certain action sequences, the 'reality moments' captured by
the shaky cam were quite remarkable. It makes one wonder how
they did it. On moment, a deranged lady come charging out
of nowhere and in one shaking follow through shot, we see
that woman plummeted to her painful death. It’s kinetic
shot that really wonder what kind of editing was done for
that kind of shot and it was really effective mean to translate
the horror over the screen.
about all the good stuff I could remember about Quarantine.
again, it’s excessive shaky cam that made me and those
around me turn our heads away from the big screen. I know
the purpose of the shaky cam cinematography was to capture
the essence of being in the mess but over doing it can also
achieve the opposite effect. If the camera man started his
shaky cam during the chaotic moments, it’s understandable
but for the shaking to start when he was supposedly recording
for TV broadcast program, it makes one wonder how much useable
footage could be handed over to the TV editor.
the explanation of the cause of ruckus happening in that building
was rather silly. Sometime the reason behind all the haunting
shouldn’t be spelt out clearly as the film makers didn’t
have the time during the movie to back the reason up properly
and if the viewer don’t buy the reason, the whole affair
could come across as a ridiculous time waster.
also the manner how deadly infection is handled. If you could
look beyond all the scares and thrill in this movie, the poor
handling of the duration needed to infect the victims would
stood up as a sore thumb. Without giving too much away, just
take note how long the first few victims took to get infected
and how long the others took near the finale. To sum it out,
logic in this movie became illogical when it’s time
to throw everything in for the big finale.
the casting of well known American artists in this small budget
flick was a big detraction for such shaky cam flicks. As a
low budget flick that has the reality feel to it, when the
easily recognizable Greg Germann (Richard Fish from Ally McBeal)
appears on screen, the whole debacle felt very made up. Gone
are any suspension of it could have happen to normal people
like you and me.
it a good idea to screen both the original movie and the remake
in between such short time span? The only people that probably
would catch both movies are film bluff who wants to compare
the differences between them and those who can’t be
bothered to check or read up more. Anyway it’s horror
so it should do fairly well in the Singapore market as it’s
obvious that most Singaporeans can’t get enough of their
horror fix. But if you want to save that few bucks in the
midst of recession, skip this or wait for the rental. Quarantine
will translate equally 'well' on the big and small screen.
(Like any Quarantine, this is one you don’t
want to be stuck in)
Review by Richard Lim Jr