Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Atrocious (2010)

One thing that I discovered recently was the virtual untapped treasure trove of horror at the local Family Video store. I remember growing up during the 1980s and the role these stores played in developing my horror tastes, allowing me a chance to see things I had never heard of and take chances on the unknown and strange. Luckily for me, that while these local stores are dying a slow death, we still have one. My first selection from the store this week is the 2010 entry Atrocious.

Plot/ On April 4th of 2010, Quintanilla family was found murdered in their country side house. Police reported the existence of 37 hours of recorded evidence. "Atrocious" shows the real images of such evidence. Quintanilla family traveled to their old farm house in Sitges, where Christian and July investigated about the Legend of the Girl in the Garraf woods. Both of them used to record all day whatever they did. On the fifth day of their arrival they were found dead under strange circumstances.

I always like good supernatural stories. Unfortunately, ever since the Blair Witch Project, the ones shot with hand-cam, first person cinematography have been a mixed bag. This Spanish entry is no different, combining an interesting story with that filming technique. While the direction and scripting create a very eerie and creepy atmosphere, there are some moments where the pacing just does not match that atmosphere. The storyline is awesome, one that actually keeps you wondering and interested throughout (yes, even through the uneven pacing) with just the right ending.  Sure, the acting was so-so, the dialogue OK (dubbing a bit off – but that was expected) and most of the violence was off-screen (although, that did add to the tension). In the end, this was a decent entry in the ever-growing hand camera arena. If you like that type of thing, you should enjoy it.

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