Thursday, September 29, 2011

Those Air Miles Are Running Out Faster Than a Running Not Zombie!

Before I get to Quarantine 2: Terminal, allow me to be confused. Much like REC2 (you know, the sequel to the original film that inspired Quarantine but the sequel of which is not the basis for Quarantine 2: Terminal), the DVD opens with an advertisement for the grandeur of Blu Ray, which seems a little self-defeating when you’re going to watch it, you know, on DVD. 
Moving on, we then get to watch a preview for REC2, which is a sequel to the film that inspired Quarantine but not the film of which you’re about to watch. So don’t worry: you’re NOT watching a preview for the film you’re about to watch but in Spanish. Now if it were Quarantine (1), you would be. But you’re not, so--

Sometimes I get confused by things that don’t need to be confusing. Tyra Banks would say that I overthink. But we’ll get back to Tyra Banks in the middle of Quarantine 2: Terminal, which is a sequel--I guess--to the American film Quarantine, which was a remake of REC, which had a sequel that is unrelated to Quarantine 2: Terminal.

It's really confusing. I know.
Quick Plot: A bunch of stereotyp--er, characters--board a plane leaving LA. Amongst the rather skimpy batch of passengers are
-A crass fat guy who instantly mentions beer
-A video game playing teenagers who’s all “I don’t need YOU”

-An attractive young woman with medical experience
-A crazy old cat lady
-A couple who have accents and a video camera
-A workaholic with a laptop
-A pregnant woman
-Her asshole husband
-A young man with a good enough looking face to successfully flirt with the cute stewardess

After some okay-to-forced airplane banter that establishes every character’s main trait, we catch The Crass Fat Guy vomiting up a storm. Before you can say drink cart, we’ve got rabid fast running ‘let’s argue about whether they’re zombie’ zombies as our plane lands in the titular terminal. Since the other part of the title here is ‘quarantine,’ we then get some government types sealing off the passengers and plucky flight attendant Jenny (Lea Michelle lookalike Mercedes Masohn) trying to survive in a warehouse. 

What else do we get, you ask? There’s conspiracies of course. HAZMAT suit wearing shlubs wheeled onscreen to give us exposition before getting shot. Some in-fighting, some animal attacks. The plucky stewardess rising to the occasion with her hair still shining bright enough for a Pantene commercial. Thermal night vision goggles because I guess it’s some sort of nod to the found footage aspect of its predecessor. 

That kind of stuff.
Like most of the horror fans I know, I rather enjoyed REC and was pleasantly surprised by its recent sequel. Sure, I felt Quarantine was unnecessary, but it was a decent cash-in that worked well enough for Americans with reluctant reading habits. A sequel didn’t NOT make sense, but a slicker version of Flight of the Living Dead doesn’t. 

Excuse me. I have to pause for the next hour to watch the season premiere of America’s Next Top Model: All Stars.

Brittany was unfairly eliminated. Girls screamed a lot. Tyra pulled a Sybil and it was more painful than it sounds.
We’re back to not zombie zombies.

And they run. And they bite. And drool. And stare straight at the camera to make those “garrrowwwww” noises. Because that’s how these things work.
There are few surprises in Quarantine 2: Terminal, though they do eventually come (see my spoiler alerted high point). It’s certainly a competent film, one executed more than decently by John Pogue (the apparent maestro behind the Yale horror Skulls series). The acting is more than passable, the gore gooey and believable, and pacing quite strong. But you know...there are zombies and they attack a diverse assortment of movie types in the exact order you expect. Some of us like that kind of thing. Others yawn.
High Points
What can I say? I do love me a secret subplot involving doomsday cults

Yup, the pretty girl gets it. But her hair made it to the end.
Low Points
When you put a pregnant woman in the victim pool, you’d expect something tragic or exciting or different to happen to her, no? Yeah, but I guess writer director John Pogue did not
Is it a cinematic law that any film involving an airline must use the phrase “put your trays in the upright position” when making a sexual innuendo? Also note that this line is used by female flight attendants discussing oral sex on a cute passenger, but I suppose everything is okay since they follow the comment up with “The cute guy is really smart.” And yes, this does indeed make me think back to the recent Miss Universe pageant, where the plastic correspondents were overwhelmingly impressed to learn that one of the contestants can even PICK UP a newspaper
Lessons Learned
In flight attendant speak, engaged does not equal dead. In horror movie speak, it just means not dead until 30 minutes into the film 

Hamsters don’t have tails...HAMSTERS DON’T HAVE TAILS!
It’s apparently quite simple to pack a gun and ammo inside your baggage when traveling by plane
Time is really expensive nowadays
The Winning Line
Dude 1: Shit!
Dude 2: It’s just blood.
That’s cool right?
Quarantine 2: Terminal is fine. I don’t mean fine in a ‘girrrrrrrrrrrl, you so FINE’ kind of way. I mean it as ‘yeah, ya know, it’s okay, no sweat, it’s fine.’ You know, in other words, the white person way. As zombie films goes, it’s better than your average straight-to-DVD flick, but in no way does it do anything new or special. Even the plane angle was done before--and with more fun--in 2007 with Flight of the Living Dead, and THAT film had the bad guy from Kindergarden Cop in it. The film will eventually make a decent enough Instant Watch, but it doesn’t really deserve much else. 

Unlike Kindergarten Cop, which deserves to be showered in diamonds and anointed as a saint


  1. So this movie is a sequel to the original film and it continues on from it? So confusing!

    As for zombies in specific settings, I won't care about any of them unless someone decides to make something along the lines of Hard Rock Zombies! I love that film so much that I would have it's babies, even though I'm a guy!
    *sings* 'Morte Ascendre Amen'...

  2. No, it's a sequel to the remake and untwisted to the original originals. Got it?

    And regarding Hard Rock Zombies, stove by Enter the Man Cave. Geoff scored an interview with Jesse!

    I also love that movie way more than I should. Big heads! Self cannibalizing little people! It's epic!

  3. This movie is so goddamn awful and barely has a connection to the first film. And the filmmakers chose to completely ignore any of the awesomeness that occurred with [REC2]. That film singlehandedly turned the infection film on its head.

    -End of rant-

  4. See,I didnt totally oppose the IDEA of not sharing anything with rec2 in theory cause ya know, separate storylines. The problem is just that Rec2 is just SO good, and quarantine 2 is lazier than my cat.

  5. I agree. I've had a shitty week at the ol' trabajo so I felt compelled to vent. Blargh!

  6. Huh, you know, I might have had a point, but then I saw something about Kindergarten Cop and now that's all I can think about...

    Oh yeah, I remember posting the trailer for this one and being flabbergasted by how awful and unnecessary it looked, but it certainly looked like it might have some entertainment value to it. And based of your thoughts, it sounds like a maybe when I'm in the right mood I'll watch it kind of a film. I mean, I knew the Day of the Dead remake was terrible based off what everyone said, but did that stop me? Nope.

    Now, as for REC 2, I really enjoyed it, but that second act with the kids was incredibly poor and nearly ruined the film. It was forced, didn't fit and it was extremely annoying. The only good thing about the kids was one of them was in A Christmas Tale (the Karate Kid one!).

    Okay, back to dreaming about Arnold and Kindergarten Cop...

  7. Yeah Matt, it's not the worst film I'v ever seen, and heck, I said the same about the bad (but not as insanely laughable ax folks made it out to be) Day remake. Q2 is much better than that one, but it still just lacks any panache.

    Trying to remember how I specifically felt about the second half of Rec2. I got annoyed with the switch and forced found footageness of it, but it came alive for me again in the final act. I so wish I realized that it had A Christmas Tale alum!

    And yes, you could be just as happy watching kindergarten cop. Mow. And later. And every day ever.

    In fact, Cortez, sorry about the bad week. My advice (medically approved) I'd take fifteen doses of Arnold screaming during a fire drill . It's been known to cure cancer and impotence.

  8. I'll definitely give it a shot, but, I WON'T get my hopes up.

  9. I liked this slightly more than the deadly one i think. There have certainly been plenty worse horror films i've seen this year.

  10. Oh I would NEVER argue that. It was passable for me, just not one ounce special. Sort of like eating at tgif's.

  11. I'm wondering why hamsters are on the plane. Perhaps using up their frequent-flyer miles.

  12. Well the script does explain it burnout importantly, they're an adorable device for furthering the plot!

  13. Wow... this film wasn't on Instant Watch?

    I enjoyed REC and am looking forward to seeing REC2 - which has made me feel like I shouldn't even bother with Quarantine. It would feel like force feeding a 5 year old hopped up on cotton candy peas.

    Maybe that's a little extreme...

    No! I know what it is. I really don't like that Jennifer Garner look-alike from Dexter or whatever the hell her name is and I would just spend the whole hour and a half making my patented screw-face because everything about her makes me homicidal.

    But I would sit through the Lea Michelle impersonator sequel. On Instant Watch.

    Oh, and two more things:

    I HATE Angelea!

    And you are totes correct about Brittany!

  14. Aw, I like Jennifer carpenter. I know I'm in the minority there, but I think she does a brave job on Dexter. But if you saw rec, then there is indeed no reason to seek out Quarantine. It's not bad by any means, but it just doesn't to anything worthwhile that rec didn't do better.

    Yeah, quarantine 2 is at least not a virtual shot-for-shit remake, but it's worthy of an instant watch without effort. I just think Flight of the Living Dead did zombies in a plane better!

    And DAMNIT ANTM is killing me right now. I can't believe they cut Brittany, then followed it up with my next boob job denying, jump suit wearing homegirl. Gah!

  15. Haha! Great review. I don't think I'll ever watch this, but now I can feel like I have! (This was probably more enjoyable.)