Movie Review: A zombie franchise returns to form with [REC] 4: Apocalypse

Taken as companion pieces, [REC] 3: Genesis and [REC] 4: Apocalypse reveal Paco Plaza and Jaume Balagueró to be very different directors. (In a Speakerboxxx/The Love Below type of situation, the co-directors of [REC] and [REC] 2 split up to direct the third and fourth installments in the zombie franchise.) With [REC] 4, Balagueró returns to the main storyline and to the kind of claustrophobic setting where [REC] really thrives, ditching the slapstick splatter of [REC] 3 without sacrificing zombie gore. As a result, fans disappointed by the series’ brief sideways turn into horror-comedy will regard [REC] 4 as a return to form.

We pick up immediately after the events of [REC] 2, as soldiers enter an apartment building and gun down infected residents until they find and rescue reporter Ángela Vidal (Manuela Velasco). The moment recalls a similar scene where soldiers clear an apartment building in Romero’s …

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