Quarantine

Quarantine (2008)
Directed by: John Erick Dowdle

When a movie is being described as a combination of  Days Later and Cloverfield, then you have got my attention. This was the reason I watched Quarantine and it did not disappoint.

For those who know, Quarantine is the American remake of Spanish horror [REC]. I haven’t seen this one yet, so I can’t compare and I don’t want to. I want to judge Quarantine in its own right, not how it is compared to the original. I’ll start by telling what Quarantine is about; that would seem convenient.

In Quarantine we follow a tv reporter who is making a documentary about firefighters. We follow her and her cameraman while the fire fighters are being called to enter an apartment where something seems wrong with one of the occupants. Once they’ve arrived accompanied by two police officers, the woman appears to be very aggressive and attacks the group. Slowly but surely the shit hits the proverbial fan and the casualties start accumulating. To make things worse, the building has been placed under quarantine by the CDC (Center for Disease Control) and that they can’t leave. While being trapped with an ever growing group of aggressive occupants, they find out that they can… just eat them.

The movie starts out slow when they are still at the firehouse. Once they’ve entered the apartment building the action really kicks off and it’s at times difficult to keep track of what is happening. This is mainly because everything is filmed using one camera and we can only see what is being recorded like in Cloverfield and The Blair Witch Project. Personally I do not mind this, because this is one of the reasons I watched this movie. Nearing the end the pace of the movie drops as the tension rises.

What I like about this movie is the way they explain what’s happening. They actually don’t, leaving you to figure out what is happening from the conversations and objects in the background in certain scenes. Just enough information is provided so you can figure out what’s going on, but they’re not spoon-feeding the entire story. I find it very well executed. I also appreciate seeing a different kind of zombie movie. I have mentioned 28 Days Later previously and it can be compared to that. The victims do not die immediately only to be resurrected as undead, wobbling about in search of “braaaaiiiins”, but are infected humans turning aggressive.

At the end of it all, I was positively surprised by this movie. The underlying story was intriguing, the end nerve-wracking and it made me love the alternative zombies more and more.