As Above..So Below

#1

Ok, this is your generic handi-cam scare film with some senseless underworld bits thrown in. Very predictable as hot bods venture into the catacombs in Paris.

However, there is a scene, and part of it is in the trailer, where one of the members gets caught in a tunnel, and he has a panic attack as the world closes in on him. It is an exceptional piece of work for such an ordinary film. I found it a disturbing scene. Not sure how it will translate to the small screen. Can’t really recommend the whole film, but I thought the scene was worth a mention, imho.

#2

What makes it so good? I don’t plan on seeing this anytime soon, so you can totally spoil it if you want.

Have you seen The Descent? There’s a similar scene in that movie. I think there’s even a “guy gets stuck and panics” scene in Sanctum, that movie with the divers in underwater caves. Although given that As Above So Below is a found footage movie, I wonder how much they can do with someone getting stuck in a tunnel. Speaking of which, I think they even did something like that in The River, that crappy found footage TV show.

Any other worthwhile bits in the movie? I imagine everyone gets haunted/killed by something from their past and then the girl escapes at the end. Am I close?

-Tom
#3

Close enough. People live. People die.

the scene in particular is “good” because it is difficult to watch. They are crawling through a tunnel on top of bones and I think it was just well done how when he tries to struggle things tighten up on him, like a Chinese finger puzzle - till he is filled with panic energy but has no way to release it. The mood and environment before it was set pretty well, and the scene is very long or feels that way - Not in a boring way, but in a painful way. Did see a couple of people walk out. In the film they actually get him free so that he can die at a later time.

I think it is disturbing as it is much more realistic than the rest of the film. When Satan ( or what ever) is chasing you it is easier to disbelieve, but when it is a believable issue it can draw you in. It may have just been right time and right place for me.

Do you remember the submarine film “Gray Lady Down” - I think with Heston. There is a scene in that where a couple of guys sacrifice themselves in a flooding compartment so that others can escape. After the hatch is closed and he believes they are dead, Heston makes the mistake of looking back through a portal, only to see they are still swimming around and holding their breath. It was disturbing like that.

#4

My gosh The Descent is just a BRILLIANT movie. The first 45 minutes or so is totally scary/creepy/intense just because of CAVES and claustrophobia, without any aggressors.

My favorite scary movie, hands-down.

But back on-topic, I’m sad to hear that As Above, So Below isn’t the movie it looked like it was going to be in trailers. Yeah, I know, trailers suck and the movie is NEVER what it looks like it’s going to be, but I still get excited about them. Nobody seems to have cared much for that.

That said, I do plan to see it eventually, and I’ll keep an eye out for that scene.

#5

Necro!

Watched this last night after some friends recommended it. I wouldn’t recommend it. I mean, it was an entertaining (and thankfully short) enough ride but it felt messy, like it was going for a few different things that, for the most part, didn’t really work. The sound design was great and I wish it had embraced stillness and quietness and the reality of being down there more. Those tunnels are terrifying on their own without people talking, panting and screaming all the time. The tensest sequence was mentioned above by mok, the rest fell pretty flat. And there’s only so much ‘A way out!’ you can take when they’re lost, cut off and going deeper and deeper into hellish Parisian catacombs.

Watch The Borderlands or The Descent instead.

I always loved this torch review too:

#6

Would be awesome if he recorded and uploaded hundreds of mundane videos just to slip this one in as a gag.

Otherwise, uh.

#7

From the comments:

finds entrance to hell

“The only thing is this flashlight needs a diffuser tip”

#8

There was a lot to dislike in this movie, but I did appreciate that it did not end like the typical found footage movie. Overall, it was okay.

In contrast, I just watched A Haunting on Fraternity Row. What a pile of shit.

#9

I’m not even going to look on IMDb, because whatever this movie is there’s no way it can match up to the one in my head.

“Dude … I think this beer is haunted!”

#10

I wish it had been that awesome. It has a haunted demon cup, and a fratbro drinks out of it.

I’m not kidding.

#11

Yeah, As Above, So Below was bad, but mostly just because of the script. It starts out ok, with a nice Tomb Raider style mini-adventure, and then they put the team together, but once they go in the tunnels it’s just a bunch of random stuff that happens with no narrative continuity that I could figure out.

I did have to grudgingly like the very end though.

#12

The guys who did this movie did a miniseries about the Waco standoff between the FBI and David Koresh. It’s well made and Taylor Kitsch is absolutely fascinating as Koresh. But because of the source material – a book written by a follower of David Koresh and another book written by the FBI negotiator whose efforts failed – it’s a gross misrepresentation of what actually happened. The follower of Koresh has a vested interest in whitewashing what the cult actually did, and the former FBI negotiator seems intent on blaming his failure on his superiors.

It’s good storytelling, and a really compelling watch, but a disservice to the people who died at Waco and the people who tried to keep them from dying.

I do like the Dowdle’s zombie infection in an airport movie, Quarantine 2, and their “people trapped in an elevator” horror movie, Devil. Too bad they ended up doing found footage in a bunch of dark tunnels.

-Tom

#13

I saw Devil! Actually pretty good!