Thursday, January 1, 2015

New Year's (TV) Evil: New Year's Day (Fear Itself)

In honor of the start of the year 2015, I'm joining some other Film Bloggers for some fun.  We are all doing New Year's Eve/New Year's Day stuff like The Poseidon Adventure and others.  I've done most of the interesting stuff- like Terror Train and New Year's Evil- so I decided to get a little creative.  Back in 2007, the success of Masters of Horror on Showtime led to two things: Fear Itself and Masters of Science-Fiction.  Both of these non-Cable Shows lasted more than a Season, but did produce some interesting stuff.  While neither show is remembered that well right now, we'll see if things change.  In the mean-time, let's take a look at Darren-Lynn Bousman's 'New Year's Day' Episode.  In it, a young woman wakes up on the beginning of a New Year to see just how bad things have become.  Who will live?  Who will die?  To find out, read on...
At around 4 am on New Year's Day, this young lady (the daughter of Greg Evigan) wakes up.
She hears glimpses of bad news, but only a little with the power out.  She sees blood on the hallways and...that can't be good.
As her bad morning unfolds, we get flashy flashbacks to the previous night.  She was at a Party (naturally) and she ran into some awkward company (read: her ex).
Speaking of awkward. the late Cory Monteith is here in one of his pre-Glee roles.  He's not bad here, really, but...can you blame me?
Ultimately, our heroine makes her way to her friend's house, but things get weird.  Why the gun?
As it turns out, she was infected from the get-go!  They just lied to us by only giving us her P.O.V.  Alright then.  The End.
Sadly, it is easier to see the problems here instead of the good points.  Let's begin with those though.  I liked the general idea of the Story and you do sort of feel for the heroine.  It is nothing ground-breaking, but it is solid.  Now here's where it all falls apart.  First- the constant mixing of Flashbacks.  Look- the day before is a bit important, but it gets almost equal time as the Horror of the Present.  The problem is that there is not enough build-up in these parts to make it worthwhile.  It just short-changes the Main Story.  Secondly- the flashy Editing Techniques.  I don't dislike all of these modern Editing flourishes by any stretch of the imagination, but this one goes overkill on it.  Flashy strobe lights and super-quick cuts are par for the course here.  For me, they are just too damn big of a distraction and make the Story hard to follow.  If you like all that stuff, you won't have my issues.  This is obviously only one of the Episodes of Fear Itself, so I'm not exactly giving up on it just yet.  While there are no real losers here, there is one clear winner...
Despite an interesting Story, this one falters by succumbing to too many stylistic tricks.  Too distracting for me, at least.

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