It appears that it’s become a tradition to put a [REC] movie on this list each year. If you look back at the last two years, I included [REC] in 2010, and [REC]2 in 2011 (together they combine into one of my all-time favorite horror duos.) So it’s only appropriate that I include [REC]3: Genesis in 2012. Although, I’m including it on this list for a different reason that the other two. Mainly, I’m including it here to show how a film franchise can radically change direction, and still be fun and entertaining. Just in a much different way. [REC] and [REC]2 were simply put — utterly terrifying experiences. There was no humor, no light at the end of the tunnel, practically no hope at all. They mixed it up between the two for sure, the first dealing with the virus/zombie angle, and the second bringing in religion, demons, and possession. But regardless of content, the tone of the first two were the same – dark. In [REC]3, the tone couldn’t be further away from the initial two. Here, the tone is almost, dare I say it, light and humorous. It’s true. In [REC]3, which deals with a zombie breakout at a wedding party, the filmmakers decided to give it a much different spin. This movie is practically a comedy/horror film. Because of this, [REC]3 will polarize its core audience. Some of the more “pure” [REC] fans will be PISSED. Yes, there is action, gore, and scares like the first two, but not nearly as much, and not nearly in the same vein. Also, in addition, another HUGELY noticeable change is that about a 1/4 of the way through, they find a clever way to lose the 1st person perspective that gave the first two their stamp. From here on out, it’s typical glossy, 3rd person perspective, Hollywood filmmaking. A major difference to the grit of the first two. Yet, for me, all of these radical changes work. What these experiments do is keep the series fresh. This is something that shouldn’t be dismissed. You just can’t keep doing the same thing over and over. It will get stale. All the series that stick around through the ages change it up at some point. They try something new. Look at the Alien series, people may have differing opinions on whether all those films work or not, but the series lives on. [REC]3 strives to keep it fresh, has some great sequences, finds a way to combine both stories from the first two films in an interesting way, and has one HELL of a memorable ending. Long story short, it was an experiment, but I say hat’s off to the filmmakers. It worked. Now bring on [REC]4. I need to write about it next year.
Oh, and can we agree that’s one of the best posters ever? I dig it so much.