28 Apr “Beneath” by JJ PEREZ
“BENEATH” is a film with a very high emotional impact, capable of dragging the viewer from the first minute to the last. JJ Perez’s filmmaking skills surpass the simple taste for staging. In fact, the Texan author, who also wrote the script, has a deep and broad vision of the horror genre and the result is incredible. The construction of tension is very precise and effective: the film proceeds between highs and adrenaline levels that lead the viewer to a profound identification with the protagonists. But Perez’s narrative structure is not just a script. The director has the refined sensitivity to recognize the most peculiar and specific elements of classic horror cinema and rework them in shocking and personal ways. Perez returns to the use of sound as a form of construction of fear, a cinematic device rarely found in today’s horror films. But not only. Every aspect of the film recalls the archetypes and structures of genre cinema without ever falling into quotationism. “Beneath” is a highly entertaining film which, while frightening and restless, reflects on the cinema itself. This ability to rework classic patterns shows us all the innovation of a young, versatile and dynamic look. The script , in fact, with a contemporary taste for irony does not spare lighter moments and spectacular scenes.
Certainly a fundamental part of the sinister atmosphere that surrounds the film is given by the location. Perez drags us into the depths of a natural cave, between openings and bottlenecks, in a labyrinth with a vague and frightening shape of human bowels. Thus, this journey within the earth simultaneously becomes a descent into the depths of man. The film sheds light on the darkest human instincts with few candle flames, which dominate the fascinating cinematography. Inevitably, the work becomes a frightening metaphor, on the darkest part of humanity, which often collects itself in the deep, and conceals on the surface.
A masterly writing for a film that manages to terrify and make people think.