[REC] 3: Genesis [Blu-Ray] Paco Plaza

[REC] 3: Genesis [Blu-Ray]Paco Plaza
Changing up a formula is a respectable inclination, but bland and predictable are poor substitutes for mysterious and frightening. This superfluous chapter in the successful Spanish first-person horror franchise jettisons the found-footage conceit in favour of a traditional cinematic shooting style and in the process, reveals which member of the directing team had the strongest sense of vision. Parco Plaza goes this one alone and the absence of Jaume Balaguero (who made the much more interesting Sleep Tight) can be felt in the complete shift in tone. Injecting a sense of humour definitely isn't a bad thing, but other than the early abandoning of handheld footage at the behest of a rational groom who's just had his wedding overrun by zombies, the levity is relegated to slight sight gags like guys battling the undead while wearing old, poorly fitting armour. Before the style switch, the absence of familiar cinematic cues creates a sense of tension that evaporates the minute the film abruptly morphs into a typical undead action survival picture. Both the film's horror and comedy elements fail to cohere due to the constant telegraphing of plot devices and with less attention paid to character development than there is to cheap, eye-catching imagery, there isn't much that sets [REC] 3 apart from the ravenous hordes of mediocre zombie movies. Nothing on the Blu-Ray gives the impression that there was any deeper meaning being missed in this simple piece of brand extension. "Preparing a Bloody Wedding" is an overlong and under-informative behind-the-scenes feature on the film's production; Plaza largely sticks to stating the obvious and there isn't much technical detail. If you get off on watching people make mistakes, there's an "Outtakes" reel, which is more entertaining when the performers are actually funny. The deleted scenes don't offer any additional insights into why this chapter matters in the greater [REC] story, and the film proper certainly doesn't. Unless zombie movies are your mind pizza, skip Genesis and wait to see how the tale wraps up with the next entry. (eOne)