Monday, April 21, 2014

We Are What We Are

I have a hard time finding decent horror movies these days. It gets discouraging, having to go through so many terrible films with horrid acting, bad cinematography, and cliched plots. Even the ones that are done right tend to be predictable.

Take the movie my wife and I watched the other night, We Are What We Are, the 2013 remake of a Mexican horror film released in America under the same name in 2010. The micro synopsis on Netflix said it was a film about a cannibal family struggling to hold onto their bizarre traditions. Right there they gave the first three quarters of the movie away. Before we started watching, we knew they were cannibals, yet the plot was designed to keep that important point a mystery, as if the viewer would be shocked when they discovered the family were indeed cannibals.

That bugged me. A lot. This film is a slow burn. The actors were great, particularly Bill Sage, who played the father, and his two daughters, played by Julia Garner and Ambyr Childers. I was drawn into the film by the performances. Mediocre acting would have been this film's demise, that's for sure. I mean they gave away a huge element of the plot before the damn thing started.

So, after slogging through a film that went exactly where I thought it was going to go, we were rewarded with a tense and brilliant ending. All of the elements of the first three quarters of the film came together, and it suddenly didn't matter that you began to feel that maybe you wasted an hour of your life watching a movie go nowhere. Oh, it went somewhere, and I was left thinking to myself, "What the fuck just happened?" The movie began with a match to a fuse that slowly inched its way toward what would prove to be a hell of an explosive end.

If you have Netflix, give We Are What We Are a shot. If you feel like the film is dragging, well, it is, but stick with it. The end is worth the wait.

Happy nightmares, fiends!

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