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Apartment 143 – 5

Director – Carles Torrens

Cast – Rick Gonzalez, Fiona Glascott, Michael O’Keefe, Francesc Garrido, Kai Lennox, Gia Mantegna, Damian Roman, Laura Martuscelli

Release Year – 2012

Reviewed by John of the Dead

While waiting for Paranormal Activity 4 to debut I figured I might as well check out another POV film of the same vein that had been sitting on my queue for a while, Apartment 143. An obvious low-budget play on the popular POV films of today, Apartment 143 follows the usual template at first, but actually manages to deliver a much different film than I predicted. It is always a positive feeling to come across a film that you think you can predict and find yourself proven wrong, but I was right about one thing going into this piece…it was not very good.

A team of paranormal investigators take on a case of strange phenomena occurring in a family’s apartment after the untimely death of their mother/wife.

Apartment 143 starts off like they all do, with the crew setting up and venturing off to their next task: aiding a family experiencing weird and haunting phenomena. It does not take long for the first instance of horror to kick in, which alerted the crew early on that there was legitimacy behind the family’s claims of a haunting. The father, Alan White, believes the haunting has to do with the death of his wife, who was killed in a car crash following an argument they had. The crew’s investigation causes quite a stir in the household, as the supernatural presence ups the ante and subjects everyone in the dwelling to its insatiable anger towards them. It is after these extreme hauntings that the story heads in a direction that I did not see coming, and actually aims to find another cause for the supernatural experiences – a cause that is not quite supernatural but interesting nonetheless. Some may not like this turn of events, and I did not like it to an extent because it lessened the horror, but I did find it unique and a breath of fresh air for this convoluted sub-genre. Unfortunately, it was during these sequences that the film dragged a bit and left me slightly uninterested, so this new idea came at a cost due to its writing execution.

This marks Carles Torrens’ first full-length directorial effort, and he did an OK job with this one. The atmosphere was good and the location used for the apartment was creepy and appropriate. He made good use of this apartment during the haunting scenes, which were executed very well and came with awesome sound effects. There are no overly good scares, but there are plenty of scare sequences so I never really found myself bored, just maybe not 100% interested at times. Sadly we do get some CGI scares thrown in, but considering the film’s low budget they were not too bad, but not impressive either. Along with this came mediocre acting performances, but none of them were overly bad so I do not feel like they hindered the film very much, if any.

Overall, Apartment 143 gave a decent effort that could have maybe been a great one, but the film’s faults, namely its writing faults, held it back. Torrens’ overall execution of the horror was fair, but the story dragging did not help this effort at all, and without any solid scares it was hard to see this film as a better effort than the mediocre one it was.

Rating: 5/10

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