There’s an interesting idea of what "REC" is and it plays out on screen in the new "REC 3: Genesis" – namely should a "REC" film only be handheld? "REC" and "REC 2" not only kept the same shaky camera style, but also stayed with the whole trapped in a building storyline. With its new take on the first camera universe visually and thematically, "REC 3: Genesis" could still have been a fitting sequel to the previous two scary and notable outings. But it’s not the old or new devices that scream mediocrity in REC 3 – it’s the film itself.
Koldo and Clara are a couple in love and about to tie the knot. Everyone is in attendance and the ceremony goes off without a hitch. Problem is there’s an uncle who shows up with a bite and doesn't look good. Turns out he’s carrying the sting of the twenty-four hour zombie and looking to convert the partygoers to his cause. The newly wed couple head out to battle the undead and both try to live long enough to see the honeymoon.
I had to make the above a tongue-in-cheek because there’s so much goofy in REC 3 and it’s a big part of it's charm. Director Paco Plaza starts with the "REC" camera conventions by having the footage come through via the taped wedding video, but eventually he wisely abandons it for a steadier cam. It’s a risk that didn't matter all that much given the uneven tone of the film overall. REC 3 is not sure what it wants to be –comedy, over the top gorefest, scary horror film – and in doing so never really excels on any one front. There are memorable moments (bride with chainsaw is a good visual!), good kills and funny bits (the ending walk is priceless!), but REC 3 is a mixed bag if ever there was one and at times comes to a dead halt. Much like a marriage itself, fans have to take the good with the bad on this one.
Scares seemed to be the special of the day with the first two film, but I can respect that Plaza may have wanted to switch things up. Fun and fear are always a good marriage in horror genre, but when both get watered-down, sadly divorce isn’t far behind.
Title: "REC 3: Genesis"
Cast: Leticia Dolera, Diego Martin, Javier Botet
Director: Paco Plaza
Running Time: 80 Minutes
Release Company: Magnet/Magnolia Releasing