Sunday, October 17, 2010
The Echo (2008)
The Echo (USA, 2008) - Color, Director(s): Yam Laranas
MPAA Rating: R
Approx. 90 min.
Z-rating: 9.5 out of 10 stars for being surprisingly creepy
[Note: I would suggest not watching a trailer and going into this movie not knowing what to expect]
One of the posters for this film calls this film the "much-awaited first Hollywood remake of a Pinoy blockbuster horror movie." What I really like about this remake is the fact that it's done by the same guy that directed the original four years earlier. (Sigaw, 2004) So not surprisingly, this is probably one of the better Hollywood remakes that you'll find out there.
Bobby Reynolds (played by Jesse Bradford) is released from prison and moves back into his mother's old apartment. While he was away, his mother went insane and locked herself in her apartment for weeks before starving to death. Bobby desperately tries to reconnect with people from his old life but everyone seems to just want to keep a safe distance. Everyone except his old flame, that is. All seems to be going well until Bobby realizes he's got a police officer living in the apartment next to his. What's worse, this cop seems like one of those assholes on a power trip who comes home and beats on his wife all day. As if that wasn't bad enough, he keeps hearing strange noises coming from the walls and hallways. Things start to get really weird when he starts seeing strange things to accompany those strange noises he's hearing. Bobby begins to think that his mother wasn't insane but that something just made her crazy.
I have to say that I am thoroughly impressed with this movie. The first half of the film is a bit of a slow burn but once this movie picks up, it is absolutely relentless with the scares. I hadn't heard of this movie before it came from Netflix so when I threw it on, having no idea what I was in store for. My first time watching this movie, I had it was just playing in the background while I was chatting with a buddy of mine. Every time I turned to watch the screen, something creepy was happening. I noticed that it didn't matter when I turned around, this movie seemed pretty consistently creepy throughout. So I sat down and gave this film a second viewing, in its entirety, and I have to say that this is one of the most effectively creepy and unrelenting films I've seen in a LONG time. There are a few jump scares in this movie but a lot of the good scares in this film are built up to. A great suspenseful, creepy, and atmospheric film.
Gore: Minimal. There are a couple bloody scenes but, unlike yesterday's extremely violent recommendation, this one doesn't rely on shocking scenes or violence to scare you. This one is genuinely creepy and builds up the suspense slowly. I liked the fact that the bloody scenes were present in the film but were used sparingly and very effectively.
Awesome: Very. One of the best creepy movies I've seen in a very long time. I usually turn to more violent and gory movies for my entertainment because I find mainstream horror so dull that I need something more extreme to get my thrills. This movie was so atmospherically creepy though that the gore played second fiddle those creepy scenes that were set up earlier in the movie. (One of my favorite scenes involves a little girl, a piano, and a song that you hear throughout the film)