The Basement is an upcoming indie horror film from Breaking Glass and High Octane pictures. It is a Hungarian/American co-production with László Illés at the helm as a director, writer, and producer. The Basement marks his feature film directorial debut. The film stars a couple of recognizable faces in Caroline Boulton as Suzie and Richard Rifkin as Kranicz, with Hungarian actor, Takács Zalán, walking away with the most memorable character award for his portrayal of the not-so-loveable Kolos.
The film wastes no time setting the pace. Even before we get the opening credits, we are treated to a teaser of what’s to come. Gore, dripping blood and dismembered limbs flung across a room; not what I was expecting but definitely not disappointing. The pace goes from a full gallop back down to a trot once our credits pass and we get introduced to our cast of camera-carrying characters.
Our crew of soon-to-be-slaughtered twenty-somethings has just finished what I believe are their university finals and are having a pretty epic house party. After the police put a pretty blunt stop to the celebrations, the remaining party-goers hold (you guessed it) a seance out of boredom. What transpires after I’ll leave to your vivid imaginations.
The film takes place in Hungary, with the cast being pretty international. Our protagonist’s girlfriend is British, and the cast mostly uses the lingua franca to communicate throughout the film’s entirety, occasionally switching to what I presume is Hungarian when needed. The setting and cultural influences are refreshing and a welcome change to what is usually hyperbolic ameicana.
The film is partially found footage, with the angles switching between the cam and your more traditional shots. This gives a somewhat confusing feel early on, with some scenes having different audio quality and others feeling cheap (especially around the seance), but this altogether vanishes once our crew of casual meatsacks finds their way into the basement. I actually found the camera work, lighting and in particular the music to actually be pretty good.
The film is indie, raw and dark and the acting can be rough at times, but it has great ambiance and atmosphere and a very concrete vision. Its strengths really outweigh the weaknesses and I was really able to enjoy the journey unfold. It worked for me, but it often walked a very fine line. The third act is somewhat of a let down considering the possible directions the film could have taken, but the entertainment value was there all the way until the end, although with plenty of cheese.
In conclusion, this is most definitely a film for indie horror aficionados. It has lots of character, a great score, and is different enough to be entertaining from start to finish. It’s definitely not something I’d recommend to a work colleague looking for his soulless Annabelle clone for his Friday night date with bae. The ending wasn’t what I wanted personally; too many plot holes, but I walked away from this one satisfied and looking forward to seeing what this new director could bring to the table with a couple more titles under his belt.
Catch the trailer below and enjoy something familiar but different.
Site founder. Horror enthusiast. Metalhead.