Oh look… Another found footage film. I can’t even remember how many we’ve seen this year alone. The trend just won’t die, and occasionally we’re reminded why.
The best way I can describe this film would be if Indiana Jones was a character in The Descent. We follow Scarlett Marlowe, an overly educated treasure hunter of sorts. Supposedly she has two PhDs and can speak four languages. Why? Seems a bit overkill, but I get it. You want me to know how damn smart this lady is. Miss Smarty-pants then proceeds to take us on a crazy ride of riddle decoding, a la The DaVinci Code. Don’t be mistaken: this is an awesome combination.
There’s quite a bit of historical accuracies sprinkled throughout the story. There is a legend of the Philosopher’s Stone, parts of the city did collapse in 1774, and the catacombs are a very popular place for urban explorers. This helps the film feel authentic, along with the well acted characters. When shit hits the proverbial fan, and boy does it, you believe their terror. I actually spent the last 15-30 minutes of the film standing. There was some serious anticipation of what would happen next.
As Above So Below literally takes you on a ride to Hell. There’s a few unanswered questions, but I’m not sure that a second viewing wouldn’t hold the answers. There’s a lot going on at times, and the chaos provides a sense of unease. Found footage is definitely saturating the genre, but this is done right.