Written by: Matt Molgaard
Directed by: Justin Benson, Gregg Bishop, Aaron Moorhead, Marcel Sarmiento, Nacho Vigalondo
Cast: Emmy Argo, Emilia Ares Zoryan, Justin Welborn
There are a handful of genuinely engrossing shorts between V/H/S and V/H/S/2. Not every featured tale is a homerun, there’s no denying that, but there was some fun material to mull over between the pair. V/H/S: Viral offers nothing fun (I don’t even feel driven to write this review), nothing even entertaining, for that matter. Hell, the collection doesn’t even feel cohesive. The unbelievably murky wraparound not only misses in its intent to express a point (which I believe is to hammer home the potential dangers one can face when on the hunt for the next big viral video), it’s also really, really dull. But I suppose that means it works hand in hand with the rest of the included films. They’re all stinkers. Not a certified winner in the lot.
The closest thing to success comes in the form of Parallel Monsters, a story about life essentially intervening on its altered self. That may not seem to make much sense, but to speak too much on the details is to spoil your lone hope for entertainment. We owe Nacho Vigalondo a hat tip for saving this one from being epically dreadful.
Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead deliver Bonestorm, an ambitious little piece that’s missing a pulse despite showcasing loud and wily characters and an alluring premise. A couple skaters are piecing together the ultimate skate vid, which leads them to a hot spot in Mexico. The only problem is, there’s a strange and murderous clan already waiting for them. Gregg Bishop (who directed the awesome Dance of the Dead) brings Dante the Great to the table, unfortunately it’s a picture that feels as though it spoiled long ago, the rotting remains as unpleasant as the most pessimistic may predict.
You won’t find a single character in this film to be likeable. Not one segment illuminates even one endearing personality. It’s terrible to say that, but it’s true. We’re happy to watch everyone die and that’s no way to navigate the course of a motion picture. We want to be attached to someone in a movie. We want to invest in something. it makes for a different connection, adds a certain intimacy to the experience. V/H/S: Viral isn’t intimate, it isn’t entertaining, it isn’t thrilling in any way, and it definitely isn’t a picture that should have ever been assembled. It’s a shame, because Gregg Bishop and Marcel Sarmiento are two awesome filmmakers who pick up big respect from me. This just didn’t happen to be the proper outlet for either to shine.