Trailer Review: As Above, So Below (2014)

Paris when it sizzles.

Some archaeologists get more than they bargained for when they explore the Paris catacombs in this trailer.

As Above, So Below is a new found footage horror flick directed by John Eric Dowdle (Quarantine, Devil, The Poughkeepsie Tapes) and
written by Drew Dowdle. The film is the first collaboration between Legendary studios and Universal.

The plot is standard genre stuff as a small crew of young archaeologists visit Paris to explore the catacombs. Things quickly go sour as it appears a supernatural presence lurks there and the team become trapped underground. The entrance to the catacombs is suddenly covered with bricks and the archaeologists are plagued by horrific visions of death and destruction. It is clear some evil force is harassing them and it likes to mess with their heads before trying to kill them. The young academics will have to try and survive long enough to find another way out of that hell and escape to freedom.

Found footage movies are a dime a dozen these days and the subgenre appears to be running out of steam. However, As Above, So Below puts the technique to good use as the film combines found footage with more traditional camera work. The found footage stuff in the trailer appears mainly when the crew enter the catacombs and it gives the viewer a feeling of claustrophobia. The catacombs are full of narrow passageways and tight spaces which makes it a perfect setting for a horror movie. The film borrows ideas from other horrors such as The Descent, Event Horizon and also Catacombs which was set in the same location. It also resembles The Borderlands in some ways as both films utilize found footage camera work and claustrophobic locales. As Above, So Below is an interesting title for the movie as it has mystical significance in certain religions include Paganism.

Perdita Weeks, Ben Feldman and Edwin Hodge (The Purge) play the main characters who go underground and they appear convincing enough. They are also joined by a few other supporting actors who may end up as cannon fodder for the evil that lurks below.

The trailer is fairly workmanlike and generic as it follows all the found footage horror movie tropes. The black guy appears to be attacked first which is a typical horror cliche and the other characters keep on filming when all hell breaks loose.  However, the trailer makes good use of its location and it also contains some startling imagery towards the end. It is a shame that the trailer only becomes interesting during the last thirty seconds. That is a common thing in some horror movie trailers these days though.

As Above, So Below will be released on August 15th, check out the trailer and share your thoughts.

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