Z is what you get when you throw every horror cliché you can think of into a film. There is enjoyment to be had, but not in the way the film was hoping to.
There is absolutely no style or flare to this film that feels unique or fresh. The film dates itself by the amount of inspiration from other horror films in the same vain. Every scene and character feels borrowed. At points in the movie, it almost feels like a parody of Paranormal Activity 3 because of how many similarities they share. To top all of that off, the film is also presented very blandly. Absolutely nothing exciting is ever happening behind the camera.
If you’ve seen Paranormal Activity 3, then you’ve seen this film. Z follows a boy and his imaginary friend, who is later found out to be a little more than imaginary, with sinister intentions. The film really struggled to ever capture my full attention because everything just felt so familiar. There is a mystery element to the film, but the characters and story that are presented were just so uninteresting that I never cared enough to get invested enough to build suspense.
ACTING | CHARACTERS | DIALOGUE:
Every. Single. Character. Feels. Plucked. Out. Of. Another. Film. We have the creepy little boy who talks to the supernatural, we have the mom who is of course the person to bring up said supernatural being, who then is made out to be crazy by a nonbeliever husband. These characters are horror film stereotypes to a T. All of the performances are serviceable; I don’t think anybody is bad in the film. It kind of felt like everyone was sleepwalking through the dialogue in every scene… Just bland like everything else in the film.
VISUAL EFFECTS | MAKEUP | DESIGN:
MUSIC | SCORE | SOUND DESIGN:
The use of music and sound effects in this film is by FAR my biggest problem with it. There’s not five minutes that go by without a huge bang or swell that makes the film once again feel like a parody. There’s absolutely no subtlety in the scares because of the sound editing. You see every scare coming from a mile away because of the same music swell used every few minutes to try and build tension, accompanied by huge bangs for some jump scares.
The only thing that’s worth touching on here is the visual effects. There’s not a whole lot used in the film, but when they are, it’s rough. You see said imaginary friend a few times, and it’s always brief but it just looks like a brown glob trying to look demon-ish. So instead of feeling frightened, you’re stuck trying to figure out what you’re looking at.
"Z is what you get when you throw every horror cliché you can think of into a film."
Z is bottom of the barrel horror, bringing absolutely nothing new to the genre. It genuinely feels like this film belongs in the 2000’s along with all of the other movies it borrows from. It’s absolutely crazy to me that films like this are still being made in 2020.