Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Tunnel (2011)

Fear 5/5
Gore 2/5
Entertainment 5/5
Creepiness 5/5

The Tunnel is a found footage flick that has so much anxiety filled moments packed in it you'll be phoning your doctor in the morning for an Atavan or Prozac prescription. The filmmakers also have a bold and unique business and distribution plan (more on that in a hot minute).

Our film starts off with the mention that what we are about to see is law enforcement evidence, it's confidential, and all that jazz. Along with some news clippings, we are introduced to two primary individuals who will serve as the main narrators of our story: a female investigative reporter and her lead cameraman. The clippings and our central characters talk about the area of South Wales (Australia) and how the government is seeking to use an abandoned subway tunnel which now holds water. Their goal is to turn it into a water recycling facility in order to address their current crisis of severely low water levels. But we learn that plans are derailed when efforts to move the city's homeless (who are the current occupants) out of the tunnel but the officials find no vagrants. Why they're missing or can't be found is never fully explained.

Despite multiple attempts to get the real story of why they ditched their plans from city officials, the reporter and her cohorts are left with no sound reasoning. But instead of being resigned to this, they have an instinct to go all Geraldo Rivera a la Al Capone's vault. But instead of finding nothing, they come face to face with a horror far worse than anything they could have ever imagined.

Along with another cameraman and crew person looking to help them out, our group sneaks their way into the abandoned underground tunnel. Right away, the tunnel serves as a restrictive force and would make a claustrophobe squirm in their seat. The early explorations serve as a means to create atmosphere and dread as you begin to wonder what could be around each and every corner. Primarily relying on flashlights and camera lights to help them see their way, the group goes deeper and deeper into the tunnel and through it's intricate offshoots and passageways.

Getting well into our exploration and learning that parts of the tunnel were used as a bomb shelter during World War II, things take a sharp turn for the strange as our 2nd camera guy begins to hear whispers in his headset. Coming across a large bell which was rung to signal imminent danger way back when, our cameraman again hears a voice in his headset when the bell is struck for amusement by the group. Only this time, the voice is really pissed off. When it's played back for us to hear, it's the first 'WTF?' moment in the film.

So of course our action is then turned to 11 as one of our crew members goes missing. It's a find and escape mission from here on out, our narrators guiding us through what happened combined with the actual footage which was captured. When they come face to face with what it is that's down there, it's a curl into the fetal position moment as not only is it terrifying but it's so expertly pulled off as the shadows and night vision camera combine along with the creature's movements. But what is it exactly? You'll just have to see for yourself.

And that's where the cool part comes in. The filmmakers are encouraging folks to download their film for free. Yes, you read that right. You can download it via Bit Torrent absolutely free. Don't believe me? Click here: http://www.thetunnelmovie.net/ After watching it, it's compelled me to buy the proper DVD version as well as a frame or two of the actual film for a $1 each. Interesting business model, eh?

Check this one out ASAP. You really have no reason not to. One of the most terrifying films I've seen all year. For fans of films like [REC] and The Descent.

Cortez the Killer


Chris Hallock said...

Yes! I'm excited! Unlike everyone else, I can't get enough shaky cam (as long as it's well-done). I'll be checking this out soon. Great review, CtK!

the jaded viewer said...

Yeah your review got me interested..now to legally illegaly download this movie.

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed this movie, the narration grated a bit (bout the instincts yada yada) but aside whooot got my heart pounding watching it late at night with only the subtitles on (didnt want to wake anyone -cough-)

Excellent review!
[but as a New South Welshman myself I just wanted to point out that's 'NEW South Wales', not just South Wales :P]

MarkusWelby1 said...

I have been consistently impressed with the unusual films your site picks for reviews. I should be sick of the "found footage" genre, but I'm a sucker for stuff like "Blair" and "The Last Broadcast" adding another one to my must see list.

Planet of Terror said...

@Chris, thanks. I think you'd really dig it.

@Jaded, I think it's right up your alley too.

@Anonymous, yeah the dialogue did drag a bit in parts but when the shit hit the fan, it was balls to the wall, pulse pounding madness!

@Markus, thanks. We strive to make readers aware of some indie, lesser known stuff that is deserving of your attention. Definitely check it out. And it's FREE!

she dizzy reduce said...

This is probably on the top of my "actual horror" list. Most definitely worth a watch.

And your reviews are awesome man. Keep um up.