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Jeruzalem on VOD and DVD

Sunday, 03 April 2016 23:00

Jeruzalem - out now on DVD and VOD“Jeruzalem” is a found-footage horror movie about the opening of one of the gates of Hell. Two American tourists on their way to Tel Aviv are persuaded by a handsome historian to take a detour to Jerusalem, just as the ancient city is about to mark Yom Kippur, also known as the Day of Atonement. Their holiday is interrupted by some disturbing goings-on and rapidly descends into a supernatural nightmare.

Rather than using traditional video camera or mobile phone footage, this time events are witnessed through Google Glass-style smart eyewear that Sarah (Danielle Jadelyn) is trying out. As we follow her and friend Rachel (Yael Grobglas), facial recognition, Facebook posts and other social media windows pop up in ‘our’ field of view, helping to drive the story forwards and also add some occasional humour.

Directed by Doron and Yoav Paz (aka The PAZ brothers), the film is one of the better examples of found-footage horror. Sarah and Rachel come across as fun, likeable characters and critically I found I did care a little about their survival. There are only a few key roles which helps to keep the focus tight and personal.

The imagery is largely stable and clear, avoiding the most common pitfalls of the genre. Some scenes are very dark but they are intelligently handled rather than frustrating.

The ancient buildings and stony, claustrophobic street locations featured in the movie lend it a sense of history and religious weight, making a refreshing change from a modern metropolitan zombie outbreak. The sound mixing also plays a key part in convincing us that Sarah and Rachel are trapped in the middle of a bustling old city, the broadcasts of religious services giving way to air raid sirens and the panicked screams.

The special effects are generally quite decent and wisely confined to chilling glimpses of creatures lurking down corridors and fleeting close-ups. The monster designs will not win any awards for originality but then that is not really the point of the film.

“Jeruzalem” should appeal to fans of the “[Rec]” horror series and atmospheric, non-found-footage movies like “The Mist”. I enjoyed the film and it did make me jump a few times.

The DVD release does not include any bonus content. Given that the crew apparently made the movie under false pretences (they had a permit to shoot a documentary), some stories about their guerrilla film-making might have been fun.

"Jeruzalem" (2015) is out now on video on demand and DVD, courtesy of Solo Media. The main feature has a running time of 94 minutes approx, carries an ‘15’ certificate and retails for £12.99 on DVD, or less from www.culttvstore.com

 

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