[REC] 3: Genesis (2012)Directors: Paco Plaza
Starring: Leticia Dolera, Diego Martin, Ismael Martinez
Plot: A couple's wedding day turns horrific as some of the guests start showing signs of a strange illness.
Continuing the [REC] series, we move on to the first one so far that I haven't seen before. I liked this one but for different reasons than I liked the first two. Whereas the original and its first sequel are identical in style and atmosphere - found footage, creepy dark building, lots of suspense - part three does away with all of that.
For the first time the action ventures away from the claustrophobic apartment building to a much larger and more open wedding venue, where couple Clara and Koldo (dig the dude's name, sounds like a Star Trek bad guy) are celebrating their nuptials. One of their relatives works at a vet's clinic and was bitten by a sick dog - you can guess where it goes from there. Switched-on viewers will of course figure out that the dog in question was the one owned by the family from the first movie.
With the change of venue comes a complete switch away from found footage style. I have to give points for the way this is done, tongue in cheek. While the switch to a straight-up movie is a bit jarring at first, I think it's the right decision. Going for the same look and feel as the first two movies would have just felt redundant by now. There's also a lot more humour involved, at the expense of suspense, but again I don't have a problem with that. The characters are likable and the laughs are done well.
What this movie isn't short of is gore, which is turned up to the Nth degree. We get an infected person chainsawed in half, a tongue ripped from a victim's mouth and a lot more grotesque set pieces. There's also some hokey romance stuff thrown in, but without giving anything away, the ending more than makes up for it.
Essentially, [REC] 3 feels like it belongs to a totally different series. In fact, while watching I began thinking that it might be one of those classic "shot stand alone and renamed into a sequel of a popular series to cash in" cases, until things started tying into the first two flicks. But while I loved parts 1 and 2 for their suspense and scares, I enjoyed part 3 equally for its gore, action and complete fun.
Part 4 awaits next - will it continue to switch things up or move back into more familiar territory? I can't wait to find out.