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A cross between a comedy & a thriller
Screaming_egg15 July 2018
Movie is a hilarious wanna be thriller that couldn't decide if it wants to make us laugh or anticipate how the story will evolve! The movie tries to be serious at some point but fails gloriously! Overall, good choice for a non-sense night!
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Thoroughly Mediocre
seochikyo24 September 2017
Warning: Spoilers
This movie was okay.

The first 1/3rd of the movie was very well done. There's confusion about why the characters are in the situation that they're in, and the acting is done well enough that that feeling is conveyed to the viewer.

The second 1/3rd of the movie starts to get pretty predictable. It becomes obvious that they're being quarantined and it starts to become a movie about human nature and how people react when it comes to survival. It still was enjoyable, it just took a very predictable turn.

The last 1/3rd of the movie was pretty unforgivable. None of the characters acted rationally.

Why did Trini kill herself instead of just waiting to see if the disease would actually make her sick, when she decided that she wouldn't take one of vaccines, of which NONE of them were sure would actually work? And when none of the characters exhibited any signs of sickness despite being trapped in there for hours?

Why did the crazy homeless drunk guy follow them into the sewer when he had already injected himself with the supposed vaccine, when the reason they were all going down there was because Elena said "you have to come down here if you want the vaccine"?

Why did the crazy homeless drunk guy want to kill them all when it was only Nacho who tried to steal the gun he was holding?

Why did Elena and Nacho carry their vaccines around with them the whole time, instead of just injecting them into themselves immediately when they found them? Was it only to set up for the scene where Elena drops hers as they're about to escape on the ladder? Causing Nacho to be the hero by giving Elena his vaccine before he fell?

Why did Elena and Nacho run past the crazy homeless dude, WHILE HE HAD HIS BACK TO THEM, when his only weapon was a steel pipe? Could they not have just tackled him into the water and overpowered him, taking away his only weapon in the form of a pipe? Nacho has at least 30 pounds on that dude ...

Anyway, the premise was good if not overdone. The execution just failed in the latter half of the movie in my opinion. It was still enjoyable though, I just don't think I'll ever watch it again.
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Brutal yet Humorous Psychological Thriller
ashlyn-m-gehrett25 May 2017
I'll preface this by saying this is probably not a film for everyone, but I greatly enjoyed it. The essential plot idea is there are several strangers in a bar in Madrid when a shooting happens right outside the door, and they find themselves trapped together for reasons I won't spoil.

What follows is a tense psychological thriller about human nature, and a what-would- you-do-if-it-happened-to-you type of story line. It's written well, with moments of humor that land incredibly well without breaking the line of suspense being pulled tighter and tighter as the story goes on. It's definitely brutal at times, make no mistake there, but I was caught up in it and along for the ride to the very end.
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No horror but boy what a rush!
gothic-fiction16 August 2017
Such an amazing, beautiful and complex way of telling a story, of showing emotions, fear, love and that magnificent instinct to stay alive no matter what.

Very few flaws in this one, mostly a perfect ride, with many bumps and quick turns, an idea executed with such skill, you won't believe it till you'll see it. I was on the edge of my seat, waiting to see what happens next, the element of "new" being always present here, keeping the viewer's interest to the top. Except the ending, which you can anticipate it easily and perhaps dislike an element or two, The Bar is another Spanish thriller masterpiece. Glad I got to put my eye on it.

Thus and furthermore, highly recommended. If you wanna see horror, scares, but presented in a different way, then go for it. You won't jump but surely enough you'll sit quietly in your seat, drawn to it more and more.

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Like Quarantine On Steroid
ddangtruong2315 May 2018
After the first 10 minutes, I thought I was watching a rehash of Quarantine (or its Spanish counterpart, REC), but boy, was I wrong.

Like the two aforementioned movies, El Bar also puts a bunch of random characters in an enclosed space then kills them off one by one. But unlike the other two, the main danger in El Bar doesn't come from external forces, but rather from the characters themselves as they start going insane and turning against one another.

Once that happens, El Bar reveals itself as a really tense and well-written psychological thriller. There's truly never a dull moment with this movie as it keeps reeling you in with new twists and turns that are both bizarre and wicked yet strangely logical. The thrill is then heightened with a amazingly fast-paced style of directing that keeps you at the edge of your seat.

The best thing, however, is that unlike many similar psychological thrillers, El Bar doesn't feel pretentious. It doesn't take itself too seriously and doesn't try to take on more than it can. The director obviously just wants to entertain. Any conclusion, if there was ever any, is up to the viewers. And this movie sure as hell is entertaining.
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Devilishly entertaining and twisted thriller/drama/comedy in which a group of strangers become involved into incredible incidents
ma-cortes27 April 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Black comedy , amusing situations , and rare roles by offbeat filmmaker Alex De La Iglesia . Roaring and bustling film by the king of black comedy , Alex De La Iglesia . Outrageous movie with odd characters , surreal imagery and twisted plot . Alex De la Iglesia is an excellent and outlandish Spanish director , he had much success as "Accion Mutante" , " El Dia De la Bestia" , "Perlita Durango" , ¨Crimen Ferpecto¨ , ¨La Comunidad¨ and several others . De la Iglesia is back with a tragic action/comedy/drama about a group of strangers are trapped inside a bar . They are the followings : a beautiful young woman called Elena (Blanca Suárez) , a 30-ish publicist agent and bearded hipster called Nacho , (Mario Casas) , a middle-aged man who wears a strange briefcase called Andrés (Joaquín Climent) , the old woman and bar owner named Amparo (Terele Pávez) , the barman (Secun De La Rosa) and a religious fanatic beggar , Israel (Jaime Ordóñez) . Later on , an ill man shows up in the bar , he has a weird and rapacious virus and , then , things go wrong . After that , the hate between them grows as fast , and as much , as their strong facing off and there takes place murders . The peculiar members of this freak group are now forced to face the wrath themselves . It all ends with a breathtaking and operatic duel in the bar , basement , and sewers . Black humor gives way to suspense , closely followed by embarrassing events that doesn't take long in coming to a head in undisguised pandemonium happened in the sewers . Here Alex deals with a homage to dark humor and a typical Spanish story in which there are comedy , tongue-in-cheek , killings , noisy action , drama and results to be pretty entertaining . It's an exaggerated thriller/drama/comedy giving the perfect tone through the entire film , you can either follow it or just wander about the ridiculousness of every single minute . Some may regard this kind of dramatic comedy dull or dumb , but the truth is its the most simple , minimalist , rawest, and pretentious comedy you will ever watch .

This is a full-on surreal Psychotronic black-comedy that blends thrills , suspense , tension as well as an intriguing script full of dark humor , drama and exciting situations . Packed with scenes of absurd nature , this story is a fantastic farce , as we follow the ridiculous situations of a varied group of quirky characters whose destination is dictated for their survival . The narration is so filled with colorful characters with a very peculiar community of selfish individuals , nutty comedy , crazy violence mixed with humor or with surreal elements and an underlying sense of tragicomedy , and it is so excessive and plenty of surprises , one can't help but keep watching , much as it is over the top in many an occasion . The film works on various levels , including good acting , and it is constantly reconfigured , however contains some embarrassing , contriving moments and also certain excess . Alex De La Iglesia has created a picture here that in all honesty is very difficult to categorise in terms of genre , as there's a little bit of action , quite a lot of comedy , a good deal of suspense and a host of extreme gruesomeness ; but it does not fit into any one genre very well at all , in truth this is one of the things that makes it nice . De La Iglesia reigns in his style this time around and delivers a utterly watchable takedown of ambition , obsession and egoism that certainly delivers a few madly inspired moments . ¨El Bar¨ captures the essence of the best Álex De La Iglesia, a film maker who, at this point in his own story , is respected and admired worldwide and has the most committed fans in the film universe . Acting personnel all do excellent work in bizarre roles . Excellent actors , but special notice needs to be made for Jaime Ordóñez as an unscrupulous waif ; furthermore , Terele Pavez also being quite ridiculously role throughout . Interesting screenplay Alex De La Iglesia and Javier Guerricaechevarria who usually work united . Atmospheric as well as glamorous cinematography by Angel Amorós with a good camera work . Suspenseful and thrilling musical score by Carlos Riera and Joan Valent , the soundtrack flows great with the film in every way , and creates fantastic atmospheres in every moment.

The motion picture was well directed by De La Iglesia . He's a cool director has got much success as ¨Accion Mutante¨ ,¨Dying of laughter¨ or ¨Muertos De Risa¨ , ¨Baby's room¨ , ¨Oxford murders¨ , ¨Balada Triste De Una Trompeta¨ and ¨Perdita Durango¨ is probably the weirdest Javier Bardem film ever made . Alex won several Goya prizes (Spanish Oscars), and a turning point in his meteoric career ; from then on he became his own producer , beginning with '800 bullets' (2002) through the Pánico Films company . He also made the successful 'La Comunidad' (2000) ; however his movies have not yet reached box office in USA , but he has strong followers , as his films have a kind of comic edge to them . Nonsense , ridicule , laughs , absurdity , disturbing scenes .. and many other issues ; you can find everything in this flick . 'El Bar' obtained the unanimous praise of both the critics and the public and results to be a lot of fun , especially for those who enjoy surrealist humor . This is without a doubt a thrilling and enjoyable movie to be enjoyed for dark humor buffs and Alex De Iglesia fans.
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What a gem
joaosantos2014 January 2018
I had no idea what i was in for. What a journey, psychological thriller with amazing actors, especially the drunk guy. At times it became a dark comedy. There is never a dull moment in this movie about the choices one makes to survive, how your human nature and self flaws makes you act and react to others. I absolutely loved the movie, the pace, the acting, the rush, the trill, i got involved in their actions. The story is gripping and engaging, don't let you be put down for being a foreign movie. A must see movie.
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No real pay off.
captainsilverink24 September 2017
Warning: Spoilers
The film itself is relatively funny, even if it is pretty over- acted.

Almost all of the deaths occur off-screen, probably for budget reasons (though this is subverted later on while we believe Israel to be dead due to the offscreen nature of the deaths)

If their gun spends that much time underwater, it shouldn't even be a threat anymore. The last 20 minutes hinge on this gun even though logically it shouldn't work. To be fair, it probably shouldn't work, and still be loaded after the building got torched either.

The same thing applies to the vaccine for that matter

There's no real explanation as to why any of this is happening either. It's supposedly ebola but they don't really elaborate on it, the film ends as if it never happened, so I still have plenty of questions.

I wouldn't recommend watching unless you just want to kill an hour and a half.
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Surprised it doesn't have a higher rating
cristina-679-503815 September 2018
The movie is really good, intense and interesting. The questions you or the characters have are only answering half way through and it works. You form your own opinion based on what the main characters do or see. The cast is perfect, they really do play their roles brilliantly. It's not just a thriller, it's a survival movie, a hint to a love story and a presentation of how the Government lies the general public.
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A Wild Ride...I Could See Pissing Many People Off...
meddlecore14 October 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Well, what to say about Alex de la Iglesia's latest black comedy thriller...other than, it's a wild ride, that I could see it pissing a lot of people off, because it purposefully leaves a whole load of massive loose ends wide open.

As if to's more about the journey, than the destination...or starting point, for that matter.

And it starts off with a bang. Well...two, actually.

And it only get's weirder from their.

At first no one knows what's going their paranoia kicks in. And, inevitably, they start to turn on each other. This portion of the film is a bit of a mystery...that is saturated with dark humour.

But twist after twist is introduced, taking you on this journey through extreme you try and figure out what the hell is going on (alongside the characters...who are great, by the way). But you never do! Making the whole thing about trust vs paranoia, and where that will get you.

On this ride, you will experience laughter, anger, frustration, discomfort, tension, fear and disgust.

And, as with all de la Iglesia flicks, it's pretty dialogue heavy...with action reserved for the second act.

But it is downright hilarious...conspiracy theories turn to germophobic paranoia, when a diseased man is found in the bathroom, dying from some unknown virus, with a syringe in his hand- having just injected himself with the antidote...only...too late.

His dying words are, "don't touch me"...but it's likely they are all already infected anyways...and there are more bodies than syringes with the, drama ensues from there.

If you enjoy films based around a twisted sense of humour, that like to f*ck with your head...then you will certainly enjoy this film.

But you really have to keep an open mind- and get rid of your expectations- or you will get caught up in traditional complaints that don't really apply here...and it will ruin your chance to enjoy the film.

With that being said, however, I thought it was a hoot! Got me riled up and right into; made me laugh; made me angry; and triggered my germophobia (meaning i'd have probably been dead pretty early on haha).

Fans already familiar with Iglesia will enjoy this the most...but anyone with an open enough mind can hop on for one helluva ride.

7 out of 10.
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Good start, dreadful finish
mrpti6 March 2018
I don't write reviews often, but felt there was something to be said about this stylish, yet very dumb film.

The film orbits around a group of people trapped in a bar for completely outlandish reasons. The dialogue starts off well, even coming across as very organic. But very quickly the downward spiral begins: characters start making very idiotic decisions, and engage in increasingly cartoonish behaviour.

There is little else to be said other than the last hour of the film is quite annoying to watch. All conflict feels forced, the characters start to slot into stereotypes, and the jokes fall flatter.

I don't think I would watch this again. 3/10
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Only certain people will enjoy
elliotte28 August 2018
The movie tries to be a mix of black comedy and thriller, but nothing about it is really humorous and the attempts to be funny does not let you take it seriously. So I did not laugh, did not smile, and did not care for any of the characters. To top it off, the movie ends without you fully knowing what actually happened.
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Good mystery horror movie
ZeroSpoilers22 September 2017
El Bar is yet another good Spanish horror/thriller movie.

It doesn't give you much scares and is a bit predictable, but the plot is good, well explored and the characters/actors did a good job.

It was a simple story but at the end something kind of felt to be missing. There's no satisfying pay off to the story but the ride is good and fun.

Worth a watch
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Depressing to see how far people go to save their own live at the expense of others. Very tense 1h45min story with many unexpected turns of events
JvH4812 March 2017
Seen at the Berlinale 2017. Turns out to be a knockout competition, something like And Then There Were None (aka Ten Little N****rs) by Agatha Christie. Since the whodunit becomes clear after 15 minutes, further proceedings are very different from said book in all respects, except for the fact that someone dies at regular intervals. Key question: How far will you go to save yourself at the expense of others, especially when those others are strangers. And is the choice very different when it involves someone who nauseated you at first sight, or had some prejudice against for whatever reason?? We see it all happening, in many variations, in this tense thriller. There are a few comedy elements to alleviate the tension from time to time, but the depressing core conclusion is that humans are self-serving by definition, and only care for others when they expect to get something in return.

The starting point is nothing out of the ordinary. A random collection of people, most of them strangers to one another, who happened to pass by and came into the bar for a variety of reasons. They suddenly find themselves against a common but initially unknown enemy. Our religious upbringing taught us that everyone is basically good, and prepared to help others in need. But our natural attitude changes in reverse as soon as we feel threatened. So this becomes the very opposite of a "All for one, one for all" story. Of the most remarkable observations in this movie is how drastically people change when they get hold of a loaded gun. We see that a few times, each time with other people, but the net effect is similar for all of them, even for people who we thought to be above sheer egoism.

There is no need to spoil what is going on and what will happen after that. Trust me that subsequent events are unpredictable, and makes one wonder if even a single one of the bar visitors will survive. And to test your own conscience: if there would be one survivor, who would you prefer to be the lucky one, versus who would you consider not worth living any further and better die in the process?? Prepare yourself for a very tense 1h45min. The whole running time is full of surprises. There is no time to consult your watch, as not a single minute is wasted. The final question is left for the viewer: would you have behaved much better than anyone in this group??
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Billed as a Dark Comedy but actually a dismal suffocating Black Nightmare
alexdeleonfilm21 February 2017
Warning: Spoilers
A Spanish competition entry at Berlin, 2017, THE BAR, (El Bar) directed by Black comedy ace Alex de la Iglesia, is set completely in a bar in central Madrid then in the city sewers underneath. This is a black comedy -- at least it starts out that way -- but ends up as a most unfunny horror film with a prolonged nightmare coda in the shitty sewers of the city. At the outset two bar customers are strangely shot down leaving the bar and then their bodies disappear along with a pool of blood on the pavement just outside the entrance. The remaining customers within, including a very pretty young woman are freaked out and afraid to leave, especially when it turns out that there is some sort of deadly virus out there. This then becomes a nightmare something like Buñuel's "Exterminating Angel" as the people within become more and more animal like and start killing one another off, or trying to. The escape through the sewers reminded me of Wajda's Kanal but without any rhyme or reason. Pure bludgeoning of the senses. Little else. Mr. de la Iglesia made one of the funniest black comedies of all time, "The Ferpect Crime" (obviously imperfect) back in 2006. I was strongly looking forward to more of the same here in Berlin but stopped chuckling after the first ten minutes and was basically in agony for the rest of the picture. To be avoided like the plague and there actually is some kind of unidentified plague threatening the world in this suffocating appalling story.


Trapped like rats in Alex de la Iglesias' Nightmare Madrid BAR
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European comic book story line
ectech-9333720 August 2018
I like this flick because it reminds me of the comics I used to read back in Europe; milo manara, caza, fluid glacial ....if you grew up on marvel comics you will never understand....but that's just my
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A sufficiently-engaging epidemic thriller laced with dark comedy! [+63%]
arungeorge135 August 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Alex de la Iglesia, whose 'Witching and Bitching' I found absurdly enjoyable, joins hands with 'Cell 211' writer Jorge Guerricaechevarría (with whom he earlier collaborated on 'W&B' and 'Oxford Murders') in cooking up a fresh tale injected with adequate doses of black humor and suspense.

This is a story of a few individuals who are put through an extremely unpredictable situation that investigates the depths of so-called virtues human beings assume and opine they possess. A case of Ebola quarantining leaves a young woman (out to meet her online date), a lingerie sales agent, a retired cop, an advertising nerd, a bartender and his employer (a ballsy old lady who runs the bar), a supposedly-gentle old woman (soliciting loose change), and a scraggy homeless man all stranded inside a tawdry pub in downtown Madrid.

One of the patrons walks out into the busy street and immediately gets sniped, followed by another who attempts to help out the former. Shocked by the sudden turn of events, the remaining (alive) guests hole up inside the bar to gauge the situation and soon come to the realization that they could be (infected) victims of an epidemic. What follows is a scenario where human virtues of trust, patience and self-restraint are put to test. The homeless man frequently yells Biblical lines indirectly signifying the 'onset of the apocalypse' and lets out a wily grin every time people lash out at each other.

The way Iglesia and his co-writer builds an aura of suspense very early into the movie comes across as refreshing. The bar serves as a platform where individuals from different strata of life with varied outlooks collide resulting in squeamish consequences. It soon becomes evident that the zombie-looking corpse holds bigger secrets than anticipated. When the majority of the characters are pushed to the basement (at gunpoint, citing the reason of likely spread of infection) Iglesia cleverly asks the question of who commands who, given an intimidating weapon in hand.

Some of the escape-schemes which the characters resort to, are outlandishly far-fetched (but manage to evoke laughs nonetheless), while some don't seem to make sense at all (#1 None of the characters' phones either have coverage or enough charge at some specific point - the probability of which is unfathomable! #2 The characters do not consider widening the sewer hole when the slender young woman is forced to jump in, thereby hurting herself, but does so a little later when the plump men and old lady have to follow). The psychotic bum is the most animated of the lot and steadily contributes to the already boisterous disposition of the flick.

The writing goes a little overboard towards the climax when the action shifts to the sewer located beneath the bar. Its a cat-and- mouse game of sorts where sanity conveniently takes a backseat. The ending is a sort-of dampener too, but its pessimistically appropriate given all what transpires.

Verdict: Mostly engaging and suspenseful while it lasts, but lacking memorable moments/characters (maybe barring that hideously deranged bum!)
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The Bar 2017
pseudonaja-124903 December 2017
The movie seemed decent for a while, but just got worse and worse to extremely silly in the sewer-scenes(even started fast-forwarding during the last 20 minutes), and then it ended without any answers given.

Mediocre acting. Plot decent, but nothing new. Bianca Suarez was hot.

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Not bad
fil-nik093 September 2017
I don't know exactly what I expected of this movie... I chose to see it as I mostly like Spanish movies as they are kinda weird and original. This one can be said it is weird and original, but something was missing...

First half of the movie I had a feeling I am watching a piece of theater. Also, I had a feeling I am watching some of those Spanish telenovelas. I see people say it is dark comedy but I did not find anything funny or laughable - well, maybe some unprobable scenes.

The last 20 minutes of the film are the most interesting.

As for the theme of the film, I think it is told in a rather not good way. And also, the people are reacting way too ...dramatic in non believable way...

I get what they wanted to say with this movie - but I do not think they said it well.

6 from me.

p.s. The intro to the film was kinda creepy.
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Stupid stupid stupid
thebigboone15 December 2018
This must the worst film I've seen In a few yeyears.
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Pretty Bad
darkdaxtervc28 September 2017
Warning: Spoilers
I don't understand why people are rating this so highly. All of the characters are absurdly stupid and uninterested, aside from the homeless man. Time and again, he proves to be the most intelligent, the most helpful, and the most compassionate of the lot despite being crazy. They made countless bad decisions, every single one obviously made to force the plot in a direction. They should have shot Trini right away. All she ever did was cause problems and make things go from bad to worse. Instead they tried to redeem her character: a waste of time in my opinion. Every person is cliché, and unless you count unintentional humor, this movie was not funny at all. They all deserved to die. I'm happy the hot girl survived, but the homeless man should have too. Also that's not how Ebola spreads, so the whole pandemic and militarized quarantine made no sense.

P.S. Nacho is one hands guy. Every single time was creepy and made me hate him more. If she had so much as slapped him once, it would've made the movie better. But I guess it's only bad when homeless guys smell your hair apparently.
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Confined and fine
kosmasp7 August 2017
Well fine may stretch the meaning of the word, because this actually is not being or playing nice. There is something going on and you have no idea what that is exactly. You are left in the dark most of the time and you keep wondering what is going on, who knows what or even is what. This guessing game is or rather can be exhilarating but also adds a lot to the tension and elevates the movie.

You may have issues with movies who play out primarily in one location. But they also give you the creeps and can be claustrophobic. Not to mention it gets tension - for the viewer and the characters involved. I don't even want to go into the story, because you could say it's thin. But the layering and the characters are written so well, this will not feel like boredom, quite the opposite.
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Hollywood calling
plmillernc-970-18968224 October 2017
This is an engaging little movie. People in small bar, drinking, eating, chatting. One leaves and is killed. Who killed him? What's going on?

Fear becomes terror. Puzzlement becomes hysteria. Ordinary folks turn on each other and show that casual interactions tell you nothing about what people will do when threatened. Soon you pick who is the most annoying and eligible for removal but there is a lot of action and cross talk before the herd is culled.

The movie could stand shortening. It does drag several times and could eliminate some of the predictable elements. It has some good acting but at least one character severely in need of a delousing has way too big a part, especially given his fondness for spouting religious verses at the drop of a tick.

Hollywood could run with this story. Two juicy roles for young male and female. Two for two older guys, one with a past, one with hidden proclivity. And a rarity, two roles for older women, with just enough opportunity for some scene chewing histrionics. Small set, low budget, faster pace, great opportunity for young director. Gotta work on that ending, though.

7 for me, It leaves a bad taste in a way, if you know what I mean.
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Good movie, hollowing
Jimmie313226 September 2017
Warning: Spoilers
I did not know anything about this movie. Searching in Netflix found something in Spanish, look at it and it had three and one half stars. So, let's, watched, we did, we were not disappointed, I thought was a very good movie, well directed and edited. I and my wife were glue to the screen. The especial effect were very good, the end when Elena comes out of the sewers is in the center of Madrid, by Callao, that is in the gran via , then she walks on the gran via.
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cshuken14 June 2018
Warning: Spoilers
This film gets stars only for style, direction and acting. The premise that a viral outbreak had occurred appeared as an assumption, and I spent 60 minutes thinking: "They don't know for sure. What's really going on? Why isn't it on the news? What's in those syringes? What if the injection kills them? What if it's all a ruse? How can they possibly know WTF is happening ONLY from the texts on some dead guy's phone?" There was SO MUCH mystery surrounding the abrupt shut-down of the city that all of the ensuing events seemed preposterous and illogical. With just a couple of points of clarification, this film could have been great. Instead, it just pissed me off and gave me a stomach ache.
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