I love horror movies that are different. I loved the first entries from the After Dark line but then they went downhill. The Ghost House imprint from Sam Raimi then picked up the ball but didn’t go far. Netflix just got a batch of films from the latest horror imprint, Bloody Disgusting Selects. Atrocious is currently available on instant Netflix.
Atrocious (2010) – Rated R for grisly images and language throughout.
“When Spanish police discover a crime scene in which a family has been brutally murdered, they turn their attention to the most riveting evidence — 37 hours of videotape. Soon, new evidence comes to light that there may be more victims.”
I love Spanish horror films. From the beautiful (Pan’s Labyrinth) to the bizarre (The Last Circus), from action-packed ( [REC] and [REC]2 ) to haunting and lyrical (The Orphanage) I find something novel in each of them.
On the other hand I am sooooo tired of shaky cam and the found footage genre. The Blair Witch Project was unique and intriguing but after Paranormal Activity, Paranormal Activity 2, Paranormal Activity 3, Quarantine aka Viral Activity (an almost shot for shot remake of [REC]), Apollo 18 aka Lunar Activity, Cloverfield aka Monster Activity (which I enjoyed in spite of the camerawork not because of it), well you get the picture. It was fresh once but now is just annoying not to mention the lazy way to make a horror film.
While using ‘found footage’ can hide a low budget, you have to have a reason why filming continues as people start dying. This reasoning often becomes so torturous and ridiculous that I want to tear my hair out. In addition to that, ‘found footage’ is a way to fill up screen time with staring at a door, a window, or something else just waiting for an event to happen.
Well Atrocious is not actually atrocious though there seems to be no particular reason for the name (or for that matter the movie). It is just boring. It might be interesting if you haven’t seen all those other ‘found footage’ films but it adds nothing to the subgenre.
When you backtrack the plot after the ending, it makes little to no sense (no spoilers). The situations where people keep filming and the angles when the camera is stationary are ridiculous. Add to all of this the fact that essentially nothing happens in the film until the event in question and you have a waste of film.
My guess is that Bloody Disgusting heard that there was a Spanish horror movie that didn’t have a U.S. distributor so they bought it sight unseen – or perhaps they thought this was the Spanish equivalent of the Paranormal Activity cash cow.