may contain plot spoilers
often heard people say, ‘when you’ve watched one zombie film,
you’ve watched them all’, but the REC
films stand firmly above this stereotype. The third instalment of the
series, in particular, sets off from the rest, bringing broad
daylight into its armoury to make the threat feel eerily real. Though
certainly not the most frightening of all zombie movies out there, it
offers the viewer plenty of gore, flesh tearing and an underline of
The makers of REC³ made a fantastic choice by inviting Pablo Rosso back for a third time to be responsible for the majority of the cinematography. His perspective through a camera lens truly brings the characters to life. Though the acting isn’t fantastic, the leading lady (Leticia Dolera) was in my opinion the highlight of the cast. She exhibited perfectly the transformation from a delighted just-married woman to one which fears for her life, whilst still having the emotional attachment to her family members. One of my personal favourite comedy characters was ‘John Sponge’, a children’s entertainer who’s caught up in the horrors after attending the wedding reception. He becomes frustrated when several characters confuse him for Spongebob and sharply explains that there are copyright issues and he’s not allowed to be called that. Plus, who doesn’t love watching a middle-aged balding man in an oversized sponge suit charging into battle with a fully loaded shotgun?
The contrast between the religious Spanish wedding ceremony and the satanic threat of a zombie apocalypse make REC³ stand out from the rest. Initially we see the wedding through the eyes of Koldo and Clara’s family, giving the viewer an emotional feel for the characters. The pleasantries are all interrupted and the horrors of their family being torn apart by the zombie virus (literally) quickly come into play.
From here onwards the bride and groom are separated and nail-biting tension is created by the uneasy atmosphere and the distant groans of once-beloved relatives. If the zombie outbreak isn’t enough, we soon learn that the attendees of the wedding are being inspected by government workers, much like specimen in a laboratory. The fact that they are inevitably trapped in this cruel environment, with the threat of the zombies ever-present, makes the film endlessly tense and eerie.
The real highlights of the film for me were the gore, the plot and the characters. As this is a Spanish film the subtitles did become a little aggravating at times, but if you’re tolerant of subtitles (or can speak fluent Spanish!), I’d thoroughly recommend giving REC a try. The third instalment is a little different from its predecessors but is still worthy of its title of a rom/zom/com. Definitely not up there with the big boys of the zombie genre like Dawn of the Dead or even Shaun of the Dead, but certainly notable.
Overall I rate this film 4.5/5
Review by Jade Earley