Director – Lex Ortega (The Dreamcatcher)
Starring – David Aboussafy (Frankenstein Created Bikers), Laurette Flores, and Aleyda Gallardo (Soba)
Release Date – 2015
Rating – 3.5/5
Unearthed Films are hit and miss with me. I’ve spoke with owner and operator Stephen Biro several times over the years and he is easily one of the nicest guys in the business so when I say something about the films he releases I don’t mean any disrespect. I love horror but not all horror films find their way with me and at other times I just don’t appreciate a movie the way it should be appreciated. That doesn’t make me an asshole or mean I hate horror. It does mean that I have a different taste in horror than most people. There has been several horror films from Unearthed that I really enjoyed and wrote a good review for. Sadly, there has been just as many that I didn’t care for and wrote a negative review for.
Recently, Stephen reached out to me about checking out a new film Unearthed was releasing soon. The film is titled Atroz and was a new one to me. I’m always humbled when a director or distribution company reaches out to me to view their work so I jumped at the offer. Thanks Stephen for letting Horror Society and myself check out the film.
**Spoiler Alert**The film begins with the police arriving at the site of a crash where a woman was struck by a car and two men were intoxicated when it ran off the road. The police go through the vehicle and find a camera. They start looking through the video footage and find some disturbing stuff on film. On the video they find the two men torturing, raping, and murdering a prostitute. This leads to an in depth investigation that leads to even more death on camera.**Spoiler Alert**
When I was asked to check Atroz I didn’t know anything about the film but a quick search showed me that the film was a Mexican horror film. This made me start thinking about all the horror films I have seen over the years and how I could count on one hand all the Mexican horror films I’ve actually seen. Now, after seeing Atroz, I have to say that the bar has now been raised pretty fucking high.
The acting in this one is iffy to say the least. Its extremely hard to judge the cast when you don’t understand what they are saying. your focus is taken away from the cast and aimed at the sub-titles. The viewer misses out on crucial moments in the film and how the cast handled the scene. The scenes you are able to actually watch the cast and not read are pretty lackluster. The cast goes through the motions but you don’t feel their impact. That is one of the downsides of watching an international film.
The story for this one is not that original or clever but does set the viewer on edge. The film goes over a wide range of disgusting acts and situations that could be considered too extreme for the pop horror fan. The film plays with the audience by switching between found footage and the typical film style. This helped hold the audience members who dislike found footage while delivering the story. Sadly, the story is a little difficult to follow. At one point I thought it was an anthology before I realized that it was a flash back sequence. Also, some of the situations we witness unfold on camera are not fully explained. The story needed to be a little more linear.
Finally, those of you looking for gore will find it here. The film features several scenes of explicit torture and murder. Some are bloody and gory while others are more emotional. The effects we get are top notch and really surprised me. The effects artists deserves some praise. Overall, Atroz is a dangerous piece of indie film making. This is not for those of you that are not accustomed to extreme horror or have a weak stomach. Die hard gorehounds need this in their collection. Check it out.