In all honestly I have not seen my fair share of Zombie movies to judge whether I am fan of this type of horror or not. But after watching Rec, I would probably say that more than the ghost type of movies, zombie movies are just my cup of tea.
For one thing, liked how the film adapted the sort of raw and handheld camera technique that movies such as The Blair Witch Project try to achieve, like the cousin of the Paranormal Activity movies which use the CCTV camera technique to enhance the feel of the film. The way the illusion was made that scenes were captured with just that one camera and the overall shaky and very chaotic movements that come with the running and climbing and panicking of the cameraman makes me feel more inserted into the whole picture. This really gets not only my attention and my full reaction whenever the scenes would try to elicit that horror in me. I also liked how the film mixed in just the right amount of gore and startle tactics as opposed to the subtle sort of chills one gets with other types of more psychological thrillers. Moreover, the way the make up was made was also quite good, seeing that what puts me off with other horror movies is the way the make up would seem so obviously fake, and I guess the way the zombies would eat the flesh or bite the characters were more natural.
Maybe this is just the Health Sciences major in me, but I quite liked that it wasn’t so supernatural and that they attributed the events to something health related like a virus instead of some sort of curse. There were parts of the film that gave me flashes of Contagion, the film about the unknown virus that became a worldwide pandemic. And again the way it is weaved into something realistic like a disease that could spread makes it more interesting to me.
Looking back however, I guess the zombie movies would not rank as high on the scare meter for some people, specially those who consider zombie movies too overrated due to its rampant usage in media. And maybe that’s also perhaps why something more supernaturally terrifying like a ghost haunting could be more effective in horror for some. Perhaps audiences like to look for things that cannot necessarily be explained or something that cannot have a scientific rationale like a virus causing people to be flesh-eating zombies. In this case, stories of hauntings by spirits or demonic possessions might provide the audience with the sort of chills or nightmares they expected to after watching a film and not just the occasional startle, scare or surprise. Rec however still gets great credit to me thought because it really was intelligent in its use of techniques that was able to make the film equally if not more frightening to me than most of the horror films I’ve seen so far in class.