Official Selection, Sundance 2012
Official Selection, SXSW 2012
“One of the scariest movies I've seen in recent memory” — Drew McWeeny, HITFLIX
“Chillingly showcases the breadth of interesting ideas still available to explore within the genre” — Todd Gilchrist, THE PLAYLIST
“A great midnight movie experience” — Ryland Aldrich, TWITCHFILM
The film that had not one but TWO audience members fainting when it launched to mass shrieking acclaim at Sundance earlier this year is finally getting a screening in Quebec! The latest in an ongoing wave of both sledgehammer-strong anthology horror features and subjectively-shot found-footage chillers, V/H/S ranks among the best of the pack in both camps, which should come as no surprise given the incredible array of talents involved in its making.
The film collects six of the indie film universe’s most celebrated figures and gives them free rein to tear loose with super entertaining, strategically lo-fi terror trips that will overdose you with double-pronged slams of fear and fun. Adam Wingard (A HORRIBLE WAY TO DIE) delivers the wraparound, which sees a gang of delinquents breaking & entering a mysterious place, videotaping their petty crime. There they find a corpse seated in a chair, along with reams of VHS cassettes. Each tape the curious criminals investigate unleashes another segment of the film. Ti West (THE INNKEEPERS) delivers a tale of a vacationing couple (Sophia Takal and mumblecore icon Joe Swanberg) whose choice of hotel is less than fortunate. David Bruckner (THE SIGNAL)’s entry, cleverly shot from the point-of-view of spycam glasses, sees a group of drunken male teens renting a room to party with a pair of girls they picked up in a bar. One of the girls is decidedly… unusual. Cult collective Radio Silence’s segment takes place on Halloween night, with a group of friends botching the address when they go to a party, stumbling upon festivities of an altogether different kind. Glenn McQuaid (I SELL THE DEAD) pits a pack of camping teens against a virtual (literally!) killer. Swanberg returns and teams with screenwriter extraordinaire Simon Barrett (YOU’RE NEXT) to drop us into a jaw-dropping skype conversation between a couple having a long-distance relationship that gets stranger with every passing minute.
V/H/S is a grunge-blasted rollercoaster of ingenuity and scares. What’s especially impressive about the film is the absolute uniqueness of each segment from the others, in spite of them all using the POV aesthetic for storytelling, right down to the way in which cameras are incorporated into their narratives. Co-produced by Bloody Disgusting founder Brad Miska (also involved with this year’s UNDER THE BED), V/H/S will twist your tapeheads tight.
— Mitch Davis