A Movie Review on V/H/S (2012)
V/H/S is a found footage horror anthology created by Brad Miska and directed by Ti West (House of the Devil, Inkeepers), Joe Swanberg, Glen McQuaid (I Sell the Dead), David Bruckner (The Signal), Adam Wingard (A Horrible Way to Die), and the directing quartet Radio Silence. Each director handled their section of the movie, supposedly without any contact or discussion with the other directors. The movie does a great job showcasing the multitude of original ideas and directing talent still left within the horror genre. While some of the segments are stronger than others, they all give us a peak, and a brutal one at that, into various horror sub-genres.
The main story, titled Tape 56, follows four criminals sent to a residence to find and steal a specific VHS tape. Once inside the residence the criminals find that the owner is apparently dead, sitting in front of a bunch of stacked up, working televisions. The group splits up, leaving one man behind to watch the tape left sitting in the VCR, while the rest search the house for the specific VHS tape. The tapes they find (the segments we are shown) are filled with scenes of explainable horror. Between segments we are given a glimpse at the events taking place at the house, as members start to go missing and strange things begin to happen.This main section proves to be just a creepy and unsettling as the segments themselves.
I found that all of the segments were quite successful, although three of them really stood out among the group. The three that proved to be most successful were Ti West's Second Honeymoon, Joe Swanberg's The Sick Thing That Happened to Emily When She Was Younger, and Radio Silence's 10/31/98. Second Honeymoon follows a couple who takes a trip for their second honeymoon which has a very The Strangers-esque feel. This segment provides us with two extremely unnerving and tense scenes that really showcases Ti West's talent as a horror director. The Sick Thing That Happened to Emily When She Was Younger is told through a series of Skype chats between a girl, whose house is apparently haunted and her supposed lover and/or boyfriend. This segments proves to be quite terrifying and shows how the video chat format can successfully work for horror. The video chat format can be seen next in Paranormal Activity 4. 10/31/98 follows four friends who are invited to a Halloween party and end up in the middle of something they would have never imagined. This segment is the craziest, but coolest segment in the entire movie. It wasn't really all that scary but provided you with a ton of "what the hell" moments and was extremely fun to watch.
V/H/S is a unique, scary, tense, and fun endeavor into the world of found-footage film-making, proving to be one of the best, and scariest trips into the horror genre in sometime. The movie hits all the high-notes, and really showcases the talent of some of the very best horror directors out there. I couldn't recommend this movie any more. If you can, wait to see it in theaters when it arrives October 5th 2012, which is the best way this movie should be viewed. I know I'll be checking it out again when it hits theaters.
V/H/S arrived on VOD on August 30th 2012 and will hit theaters on October 5th 2012.
Directed by Ti West, Joe Swanberg, Glen McQuaid, David Bruckner, Adam Wingard, and Radio Silence.
Rated R. Runtime: 115 Minutes