Even if you’re not into horror movies and don’t really keep an eye on what’s new and happening in the horror film world, you may well have seen something about Veronica anyway. It’s taken the internet by storm since arriving on Netflix, it was released in Spain in August last year but since dropping on Netflix it’s been dubbed The Scariest Movie Of All Time. Before viewing I would be very cautious in falling for something that’s been hyped this much but I do always want to see just how scary things dubbed as scary really are.
Director – Paco Plaza.
Writers – Fernando Navarro and Paco Plaza.
Stars – Sandra Escacena, Bruna Gonzalez, Claudia Placer, Ivan Chavero, Ana Torrent, Consuelo Trujillo, Angela Fabian and Carla Campra.
Run Time – 105 minutes.
Tagline – Someone Answered Your Call.
Veronica is the oldest daughter in her family, sadly her Father is no longer around having died and her Mother is always working late hours. Leaving Veronica to practically raise her little brother and two little sisters all by herself, a huge responsibility for a 15 year old to take on. Still she gets the job done, getting them ready for school taking them there, picking them up, getting the meals ready, tucking them into bed, pretty much Mothering them all.
She also has some sort of fascination with the occult that leads her along with her best friend Rosa and the uninvited Diana who seems to be replacing her in Rosa’s life to do a Ouija board to speak to her Dad again. As with all horror films these boards cannot be trusted and things rapidly go wrong, Veronica collapses straight after doing one and things freak out Rosa and Diana. However it’s only Veronica that begins to experience strange events.
She is warned in typical horror style by a blind Nun dubbed Sister Death that she will have to protect her family as something from the other side walks with her. Most of the haunting/demonic stereotype crop up here, doors slamming shut, hot water burning her siblings, strange dark hands emerging from the bed to strangle her. Whilst these are mostly things that have been seen before they are all superbly done, add to them some events that are not so common and the director successfully creates a pretty creepy atmosphere inside the well designed apartment they live in.
Veronica must research more into what the hell is going on and where else would you go but to the blind Nun. She’s not really that much help but she does give Veronica one clue that could save her and her family. Veronica races for help but ultimately it’s down to her to rid her home of whatever it is that she summoned through the board and save her family. The film is supposedly based on true events but then again so are quite a few films in this style. The ending is great and I didn’t see it coming at all, although I am not a fan of any film or TV that shows us something then flips things to the three days earlier like this movie does.
- Being based on true events the film is set in 1991, I’ve seen a couple of reviews slating the score but I loved it. The sharp tones really did give it the feel of something that could easily have been filmed in the late 80’s to early 90’s.
- There’s some creepy moments inside the apartment as the haunting builds up.
- Sandra Escacena who plays Veronica is making her acting debut in this film and she really is superb all the way through. The supporting cast are also all very solid especially the younger actors who player her brother and little sisters.
- Pacing is perfect, things build at a nice speed leading to the ending which I loved.
- Some stereotypical haunting movie scenes in there.
- Could have picked a better character than a creepy blind Nun to help her out, soon as she was on screen I just knew she would be the one to help out.
- As I mentioned I’m not a fan of the storytelling technique that revolves around showing a scene then darting back into the past. I can see why it’s done but I’d rather things were just built up to that scene instead.
This is a very decent film although I can see how someone who watches these types of films would view it as stereotypical. It does not live up to the hype but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth watching, do people really believe the hype surrounding films and TV on the internet any more? I’d say watch it and make your own mind up as to if it’s overrated. I enjoyed it and it kept me gripped from start to finish, having being directed by Paco Plaza who directed the first three REC films it was obvious it’d be well directed and it was.
Overall Rating – 7.5/10