Plot: Alex, a young filmmaker, leads a group of students to investigate the same haunted hospital to see if the film Grave Encounters was real. I love it! Extremely meta.
Type of Horror:
It’s the same, quiet, BANG! Shock horror. Nothing to write home about. You’ve seen it before, but hey, it can still be enjoyable.
So…Grave Encounters is (‘in reality’) a DVD-released film and fans go to check out it’s filmed location. And we’re watching the would-be sequel! It opens with webcam-reviewers both praising and slamming the original – Immediate brownie points. The budget feels higher than the original although almost all of the effects are still in the night-vision mode. (Although in reality it was substantially reduced – $2 million down to $100,000 – I guess they still had all of the props!). The budget is seen with the group have more sophisticated equipment, including a infra-red camera and an iPad to watch the original film on & compare their location – great! There are deaths ripped straight out of the first film, similar encounters that go differently, and the theme of the hospital becoming an inescapable maze is built on – there’s a lovely breather-moment that was appreciated. Last time they couldn’t leave because they locked themselves in, this time it’s because they left expensive equipment around! There’s also some other callbacks to the original that I won’t ruin but are a lot of fun. Much like the original it gets a bit hokey at the end, but just run with it.
Overall: This is going to be quite a divisive film by the whole meta/’movie within a movie’/’that was fake but this is real’ nature of the film, but I loved Scream’s central premise, and Back to the Future too. So despite the ropey acting/effects etc, I quite enjoyed it. If you’re gonna watch this, why not watch both films back-to-back? Go for it! (*prepares for rotten tomatoes to be thrown*)