Found Footage 3D (2016)

Seen as part of the International Horror and Sci-Fi Film Festival and the Phoenix Film Festival 2017

Note: I saw this flat. I’ve heard the 3D really adds to the movie and as a lover of 3D, I can see how that could be the case. However, a movie must stand on its own 2D feet to be any good, so let’s move on.

Even the best Found Footage (FoFo) movies can be a chore if shaky cam brings on motion sickness, which it seems to do for a lot of people. Same with 3D. Some people enjoy, some just can’t sit through it. How wise then to create a “new” FoFo movie in 3D? Plot paragraph …

A group of seasoned filmmakers travel to a cabin in the middle of frikken nowhere (as you do) to make the world’s first 3D found footage movie. They also film the filming of the movie for a behind-the-scenes feature. Unaware that they are filming in a haunted house things soon go south as an evil “spectre” finds a way into their world by invading their behind-the-scenes footage.

From scene one Found Footage 3D is really, really funny. There are lots of ‘horror’ jokes here for gorehounds with name-checks of our favorite movies, horror tropes, and such. Director Steven DeGennaro knows his genre and his audience so horror fans can expect a lot of laughs.

One scene early on where the crew tries to enlist two locals into acting in the movie is priceless. It is clear early on that this is a comedy with horror, not a horror comedy. That distinction is crucial to enjoying Found Footage 3D.

If you go in expecting Blair Witch you will be sadly disappointed. If you prefer a cocktail of laughs, scares and shocks you have come to the right place.

The cast is small but strong throughout. Carter Roy, Alena von Stroheim, Chris O’Brien, Tom Saporito, Scott Allen Perry, and Jessica Perrin all feel right as their respective characters. I particularly enjoyed Scott Allen Perry as Carl the sound guy who plays the voice of seasoned horror movie reason whenever something spooky happens. It great to find a character in a situation who says what the audience is thinking.

Every rose has its thorn and the thorn for Found Footage 3D is that the most scary it got for me was a couple of fun jump scares. I appreciated the humor but as we all know funny and scary is hard to pull off. As The Night Watchmen, Shaun of the Dead, and any Peter Jackson movie you care to mention, proves it is far easier to be highly successful with funny and gory. Scary takes time. Scary has to build. This is where Found Footage 3D stumbled for me because it jumped too quickly from funny to scary.

I don’t want to rain on the SPX team but the FX seemed to fall at the last hurdle when the spectre is onscreen. Maybe it looks better in 3D but in 2D it looked clunky.

Ultimately Found Footage 3D is a fun ride that every horror fan should see because smart, funny self-aware horror is rare. Just know going in that its mainly big laughs with a twist of scary.

Two word review: Fun Footage.

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