What first intrigued me to watch this film was the trailer, and although many people are now sick to death of hand-held camera films, with there being so many out now. I still thoroughly enjoy them, mainly due to the fact that it seems more realistic, and it is good to see what film makers can create on camera in one of these movies, ‘Cloverfield’ set the bar pretty high. However seeing one with a lower budget is sometimes more enjoyable.
Whereas with other films like this such as ‘The Blair Witch Project‘ which was a hand-held camera, and ‘REC’ which was a TV news camera, they stuck to just telling the story through those surrounding that single visual device. The Bay takes this genre to a new level, set in Maryland, USA, the film follows the story of what first seems like an infection, however ends up being something much more horrifying. After the ‘Independence Day’ celebrations, something begins to spread amongst the inhabitants of the town, causing people to become covered in legions, and in some instances, lose their tongues. Not giving any spoilers away here, it turns out to be something in the water, but by the time they realise, it is already too late. What makes the film different is that it is not just shot through the view of one camera, it begins with a news reporter explaining what happened in the town and then she begins to show different footage: from her news camera, a young girls iPhone, a police squad car, a doctor’s surgery room in the hospital and the office of the CDC.
Seeing the film shot from all these different angles will give you the impression that you’re actually watching a documentary rather than a horror film, adding a more real-life feel to it. All that was missing was David Attenborough’s velvety-tone voice over. Making it this way also gave director, Barry Levinson, the chance to show the terror from many different perspectives around the town, and the fear from various people as the outbreak got worse.
One of the creepiest bits has to be a couple of hours after the outbreak has happened. The news reporter and her camera man are standing over looking the pier where the pandemic started, the place has become deserted with no other signs of life visible. As she is trying to report what has happened to this once peaceful town, she stops talking and urges the camera man to listen. All around them in the distance, faint moans can be heard from the towns people in pain. Still at this point, the reason for this catastrophe is unknown, so the characters still have no idea what is happening, for all they know these people could be turning in to zombies.
From the beginning to the end, The Bay will have you on the edge of your seat trying to figure out, in a good way, what has happened to this town. When what is actually happening comes to light, it will definitely give you the chills. It delivered a few jumps, however the primary aspect of this film was the storyline. Mixed in with some great make-up and special effects made this picture an enjoyable watch, and one which hold a good place on my favourite horror films list.
Tagline: Panic Feeds On Fear
Horror Rating: (:-O) (:-O) (:-O)
Star Rating: ☆☆☆☆