Director – John Pogue
Cast – Mercedes Masöhn, Josh Cooke, Mattie Liptak, Ignacio Serricchio, Norie Victoria, Bre Blair, Lamar Stewart, George Black, Phillip DeVona, Julie Gribble, Erin Smith, Lynn Cole, Tom Thon, Sandra Ellis Lafferty
Release Year – 2011
Reviewed by John of the Dead
I don’t normally care for remakes, especially when they are of great films that I adore dearly, but when Quarantine, the American remake of REC, debuted I was pretty stoked to see if we could replicate the awesome experience our Spanish friends gave us. The experience was far from the awesomeness of REC, but overall Quarantine gave me a positive experience in the end, however I expected a piss-poor and pretty pathetic end-result from the DTV Quarantine 2: Terminal, and I am very surprised to say that I was wrong about this one. While this was not an awesome film by any means, it did give me some good engaging horror and a high production value that despite minor faults made for a mostly-enjoyable film in the end.
Soon after an outbreak of a deadly virus leaves a Los Angeles apartment complex under heavy and violent quarantine, a plane flight suffers and outbreak of the same virus mid-flight and is forced to land at a nearby hangar where the passengers are placed under quarantine and forced to take drastic actions if they wish to survive the ordeal.
It should be no surprise that of course I love when I go into a film with low expectations yet come out pleased with the experience, and we can chalk this down as another rare occasion in which this happens.
For starters, I must say that I enjoyed writer/director John Pogue(writer; Ghost Ship, The Skulls)’s idea to not make this a direct remake to the incredible REC 2, but a film of its own that only shares the inception of the virus with the other relative films. I loved the idea of taking the virus to another level (literally) by setting it onboard a plane during mid-flight, which right off the back makes for great atmosphere given the plane makes for a nowhere-to-run scenario, and the tension kicks in early on and in heavy fashion when the passengers are forced to take matters into their own hands to ensure the safe landing of their plane. The first act takes off quick and delivers horror in fairly good dosage, but things really kick up when our protagonists are quarantined in the hangar and forced to fight off the infected as well as the bioterror agents who have no intention of letting them go free even if they are not infected. The rest of the film settles on this location and again keeps up the nowhere-to-run tension with plenty of infected action and pretty gory deaths as well, which aided the film in keeping a solid pace that never left me uninterested in what was going on. The storyline involving the virus is furthered a bit, as it was in REC 2, however Pogue’s storyline advances are nowhere near as creepy as those in REC 2, and also quite cliché as well.
Pogue’s direction was great and much better than I expected for a first-timer as he kept the tension high and executed the horror to fairly high potential. His atmosphere is great and the sets used are positive in making for visually engaging material, and he throws in plenty of live-action gore instead of opting for CGI as most DTV horror efforts do – thanks Pogue. The character performances are so-so, with no one really taking the lead and each of the actors coming off just OK at best, but none of the performances were horrible so I found no major faults in the acting. At times I felt that Pogue’s direction could have been better and made the material more hard-hitting than it was, which is the biggest reason why the film received a borderline-positive 6-rating and not a good/positive 7-rating.
Overall, Quarantine 2: Terminal is a much better film than the piece of DTV crap that I expected, and gave me a fairly good experience due to great tension, plenty of action, and a different environment for the story to take place. Pogue shows that he has directing talent to compliment his writing, with only minor issues keeping this film from a higher rating.