6 Films To Keep You Awake
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The box art for Lionsgate's release of 6 Films to Keep You Awake gives zero indication as to its country of origin. I assumed at first that the set was just six horror films Lionsgate had acquired that they didn't think would survive a standalone release. When I discovered the films were Spanish in origin I assumed that 6 Films to Keep You Awake was the Spanish equivalent to the After Dark Horrorfest. A little more research revealed that the collection is more comparable to Showtime's Masters of Horror television series. Given the pedigree of the participants, and the short runtime of each film, I found myself looking forward to this experience.
The Baby's Room
A couple and their newborn arrive at their new home, a beautiful old house that has been renovated to meet their every need. However, there is an entity living in the baby's room, which can be heard over the baby's monitor, and later seen on a closed circuit camera. Is it human, a ghost, or are the tenants simply going insane?
Álex de la Iglesia's name alone was enough to make me want to watch The Baby's Room first. Iglesia is one of filmdom's best kept secrets. As a director he always brings an original and humourous flair to his projects, mixing the best elements of energetic directors like Sam Raimi and the Coen Brothers, while never stooping to style over substance shortcomings. Even in the case of this rather seriously minded and relatively realistic horror film, Iglesia is sure to inject his special brand of realistic levity. The dialogue is witty, and the thickly drawn characters act like real people would in a really bad situation.
The Baby's Room is, unfortunately, not an original story by any stretch of the imagination.Read more ›
Watch out for Spain in the future.
Here's the scoop. A couple, with a newborn, buys a beautiful but old house. They plan to restore it but almost immediately things start to feel wrong. An audio baby monitor reveals a presence in their son's room. An upgrade video monitor shows the intruder. Locks are replaced, alarm systems installed but the intruder is still present. Nerves are frayed, hubby's work begins to suffer. He starts to uncover an uncomfortable history in the house and plans to set things right. But of course things are never that easy.
I be likin' this director Alex de la Iglesia. He handles his work well. I usually find jump scares to be cheap, but he has one here that is too cool not to like. He also throws some physics in in the form of quantum theory (Schroedinger's Cat) to explain the parallel worlds. This is shot and cut well so the watch is real smooth. And at a svelt 77 minutes, it won't tax your attention span. The "Twilight Zone" type ending might annoy a few, and, as the problem existed in the house long before these folks got there, there is nothing to really explain how hubby ended up in both worlds. But this is still a heck of a watch.
If you like a more thoughtful type horror flick, this should do you.
Bad news - While considerably better than Hollywood's current formulas, it would appear that Spanish films also have formulas and therefore, watching several close together becomes repetitive.
Thankfully that saves me the trouble of reviewing each individual movie, so I'll skip forward to the ones I found memorable.
"The Baby's Room" essentially is about an old house, in which the occupants, having recently moved there, start hearing mysterious voices and later, images of a mysterious man watching their baby. Is the house haunted? Actually it becomes very weird.
"To Let" features a couple in search of an apartment. However, the place they're checking out might not be quite as harmless as it seems, as the owner clearly has issues. This film has much faster pacing than the other films in the collection.
The above two were very good with setting atmosphere!
Aside from lacking variation in general - even with their varied themes many similarities are present in these films - there isn't any significant downside to the collection. I'd suggest spacing out watching these because, despite providing what's lacking from most big-budget horror films, watching these shortly after each other will feel repetitive.
I give them a collective score of 20/30, which should be 3.3 stars which should round down becoming three stars, however with four decent films and three good ones, the collection feels better than the combined sum of its parts.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Love foreign horror films!! Great story lines on each of the films. Not the usual cliché films stories.Published 1 month ago by Oz
Babies Room is the best movie in this collection, no matter how many times I watch it I still love it.Published 14 months ago by lauren
I originally bought this dvd set just to show my boyfriend the movie- A Christmas Tale becase no matter how hard I tried to "find" it I couldn't. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Ame
One of my disc is missing because there is a duplicate of one of the disks inside so there are five disks because one is a repeat. Read morePublished 18 months ago by Charlotte Sometimes
I am a huge fan of horror films, and constantly search for any that I have not seen. Apparently, fourteen Spanish-speaking fans have seen these, and I bought it based on their... Read morePublished on March 29, 2014 by Doctor Dean
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