If you come across the IMDb page for this micro-budget Found Footage film, you’d be forgiven for thinking you were onto a right stinker…and you may even opt to overlook it for a few weeks (like I did!).
That’s right – I saved this one for a night where I was struggling to find a new Found Footage experience, because I was 99.9% sure that the micro-budget offering was going to be torture to sit through.
But surprisingly – it wasn’t.
I’ve always had a kind of soft spot for the infected-scientist premise – ever since I watched the original 1958 The Fly, and then the excellent Jeff Goldblum remake in 1986. I wouldn’t say I’m a super-fan of ‘science-fiction body horror’, but certain elements of the despair it brings appeals to me.
Anyway, The Infection has a pretty lonely IMDb page, and it doesn’t look like it’s going to get much attention anytime soon (only 22 people have taken the time the rate the movie, and one of them was me!).
This tends to be happening more and more these days – most people want to watch a film that has had at least a 3 million dollar budget behind it, but that seldom happens in the Found Footage genre.
So it’s micro-budget, there’s only seven characters in the whole film, and about 95% of the film is taken up by scenes with the main character alone…
But it’s actually a half-decent science fiction movie.
When a virologist becomes infected with a new, dangerous bacteria, he decides to quarantine himself in his home and fight to find a cure and reunite with his family.
I’m not going to start pissing in the sand and running round in circles on this one – I feel it’s more important to get right to the conclusion and point out why I thought this film was worth covering on this site.
It’s a 100% fresh take that departs from the overused alien/ghost hunter/cryptozoology tropes – which is always a welcome change in the Found Footage genre. I have nothing against these more common genre routes – it’s just that I like to see something new every now and again!
This type of thing is always going to have some kind of ‘drag’ through it’s screening time – how long can you stay interested in a man basically rotting away, and transforming in front of a camera?
So there are a few stagnant scenes, but that is to be expected (the movie runtime is 92 minutes, and it could easily have been done within 60 minutes!).
I also think it’s worth pointing out that the movie was written, directed, produced, and ‘lead acted’ by one guy – Keros Lowder. Now, he’s no David Cronenberg, and he’s no Jeff Goldblum, but he really does do a decent all-round job of this project.
What about the glaring downsides to this movie?
Well they are exactly that – glaring…but that’s to be expected, right?
The biggest disappointment for me was the final result of the ‘creature’ that our scientist was turning into. I’m not hitting any spoilers here – because it should be 100% obvious to all of you that this is the direction the movie is heading.
Anyway – the creature…
Have you seen those party dinosaur costumes that have those elevated tails?
You know the ones – the tail is suspended to the back of the costume’s neck by a ‘invisible’ thread, so that it sways slightly when the wearer walks?
Yeah – kinda got the feeling that the crew had just gone out and bought one for $20, then adapted it slightly.
Seriously, you’re just as likely to laugh at the end result of the infection as be horrified.
But please don’t let this shoddy FX episode put you off watching the film – if you like science fiction horror, there’s a good chance you’ll enjoy this outing.
Not a bad first attempt by Lowder, I’ll be interested to see what he comes up with next.