As Above, So Below – 2 out of 5
When the trailer for this one came out, my first thought was that this was just another generic “found footage” film that was, realistically, going to be no different than the hundreds of other ones that have been released. However, I was a little surprised to find myself thinking that this film actually had a decent story working for it and actually held some real potential to be a great film…so, what went wrong?
|It's not a spoiler to say he dies. Some horror film clichés won't go away...no matter|
what year it is.
Scarlett (Perdita Weeks) is a young alchemy scholar and she is out to find a special stone that her father died trying to find. Somewhere deep in the catacombs of France, among all the bones and underneath the streets, lies the philosopher’s stone—a stone that can turn lead to gold and grant eternal life. With the determination of Indiana Jones out to stop Nazis from getting such power, Scarlett enlists the help of a former love named George (Ben Feldman) and a group of French residents that are extremely knowledgeable of the catacombs. However, once she finds what she is looking for, Scarlett is horrified to discover that the group may have stumbled upon the gates of Hell.
|"I'm excited to toy with things I don't understand!"|
I admit I had very low expectations going into As Above, So Below but was thrown back by how much I was getting into the story. The concept of the group Tomb Raider-ing their asses accidentally into Hell while on a mission to collect an ancient stone was actually kinda cool and the actors who made up the cast were very excellent and did their jobs well. Additionally, it was neat that this production was the first to get permission to film in the catacombs and that locale is both interesting and creepy as shit. There were only two things that really held the film back for me.
|I would say those glasses held the film back but that would be a lie.|
That shit is steampunk as hell!
|Good thing they got the devilishly handsome Frenchman|
who has intricate knowledge of the catacombs and not
some fugly turd.
|"This stone should heal you...shit, this isn't the right stone. This is a kidney stone."|
|Man, who would have thought that exploring around an|
area where so many bodies were buried would have
ended so badly?
|Okay...that is a bit creepy. I give the film that.|
|Well...he did say he'd be right down...|
I'll be here all week!
|Scary woman in the film or a dead-eyed audience member who just walked out|
from seeing the film?
While I liked As Above, So Below, I was also greatly, greatly disappointed with it. It had all the potential to be an absolutely amazing horror film that could have made great use of its premise to craft chilling scares but, instead, it settled on being a run-of-the-mill, generic horror film that is almost completely indistinguishable from the other crap “found footage” films that get churned out every year. It’s really time to retire this gimmick and get back to proper horror film movie-making.