Friday, June 27, 2008
P2 is a scary, torture type film, with lots of tension and lots of sick visuals.
The plot revolves around a young woman who's working on Christmas eve, and gets stuck inside the corporate building where she works. She's relegated to the inside of the parking lot where she is drugged, assaulted, and nearly killed by a psychotic parking attendant.
The film takes its name from the level inside the structure, Parking Level 2.
I first saw the trailer for P2 while watching some other movie, and swore that I would see it. However, I never really got around the watching this movie when it was out. I then, by accident, remembered to pick it up on a whim. It was a surprisingly tense ride through torture.
The movie has some really slick visuals, even thought it takes place underground in a parking garage. The camera work is slick, and the foley sound is great at times, and misses only on a few occasions. The attendant reminds me a lot of Joshua Jackson of Dawson's Creek fame, and it makes me wonder if he wasn't the person that the part was written for.
The main character Angela, makes one heck of an effort to avoid being murdered in the parking structure, and barely misses any help she can get. The typical horror elements are found here.
The Cellphone that doesn't work.
The dumb police officers who leave without noticing blood splatters.
The Surprise corpse.
The near miss of being rescued by a pedestrian or a cab driver.
The car that won't start.
When you stop counting the obvious, you get to see some really cool puzzles.
For instance, Angela is trapped in an elevator and Tom (the parking attendant) begins to pour water onto it, as the elevator fills with water (from a firehouse that is in the building) she has to open the doors and let gallons upon gallons of water out, and the impact is just immense on this one.
In another scene, Tom drives a man whom he's tied onto an office chair straight into a wall and his entrails burst open and he dies a horrible, gorey death. The gore was quite a surprise, considering that this film didn't really seem to be going in that direction. I would have presumed this film a pg-13 movie, but it worked in the gore into a palpable burst of emotional release, and anguish that was...dare I say...tasteful.
Here is a trailer for the film P2:
Some people call this sort of genre, Torture porn. I'm not a big fan of the term, but we have seen movies in the past that deals with a woman in despair, running from psychopaths, and barely making it at the end. These woman are dropped into these situations with little to no background story or characterization. Most of the time, the psycho's don't get a backstory either, they just simply write it off quickly in a snip of dialogue.
I don't mind the scenario, but it did get me to thinking about past movies. Whatever the case is, this genre is horror/terror, and regardless of whether it's a kid terrorizing adults, adults terrorizing other adults, teens getting killed for having sex, or something else, it's a genre that has taboo written all over it. So P2, even if some call it Torture porn, is a step above some of the other films in the horror genre.
This movie moves quite well, considering that there are only so many things that can happen inside the parking structure. You do sense an urgency of madness and despair from the Tom, the parking attendant, and his anger rises to a boiling point towards the end of the film.
If you watch this film for nothing else, you have got to watch it for the game of chicken that ensues in the film, it is well done, and you might not guess the outcome.
There is no nudity, which is definitely not a plus.
Angela shows some major cleavage, but we never see nipples when she's freezing, or even when she's completely soaked from the elevator scene. The director and photography guy really tease you in this film, and that can be maddening to some. It's definitely noticeable, that's for sure.
Overall, P2 is an above average film. It does its job so well, but doesn't break new ground, nor does it strive to be greater than a horror film. It has thriller elements, but the sheer brutality and sounds that wait for you in this film are worthy of the R rating.
Other recommended "torture porn" films:
Captivity via Amazon.com
Vacancy via Amazon.com
Hostel II via Amazon.com
They Call Her One Eye via Amazon.com
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