DVD Shopping Bag: The Bay (Mania.com)

By:Robert T. Trate
Date: Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Source: Mania.com

The Bay had a quiet release. Fitting, as movies that deal with this kind of horror also have a quiet beginning. The town of Claridge, Maryland is getting ready for the big festival. The mayor is kissing babies, the locals are participating in crab eating contests, and a local journalist (Kether Donohue) is getting her big break. A cough here, a scratch there, and a quick up chuck and The Bay takes off. 


Director Barry Levinson (Rain Man, Young Sherlock Holmes, Wag the Dog) takes his turn at a Blair Witch style of horror movie. In short, Levinson uses handheld amateur footage to tell his all too realistic tale. A storyteller of his nature does bring a certain class and preparation to the film. Films of this nature are usually made by inexperienced filmmakers; young filmmakers hoping to slide by the audience with the understanding that this is “found footage”. The Academy Award winning director of Rain Man isn’t going to have that luxury. In all honesty, it was Levinson’s name that actually got me to watch the picture. I was reminded recently that a director by the name of Alfred Hitchcock went off to a do a black and white horror movie once, all because he wanted to do something different and hoping this, too, would be something different, I gave The Bay a shot. 


The film is narrated by our young journalist, Donna Thompson (Donohue). She has finally come forward to tell her story about the day’s events. She has gained access to all the mobile devices, home videos, and surveillance footage of that dreadful day. It is her desire to not only piece things together, but give the day’s events a structure. This eye witness account works on multiple levels.  Thompson is also a participant in the outbreak and her own camera man falls to the plague of The Bay.


The film meanders for the first 20 or so minutes. After all, how many Blair Witch style films have there been since 1999? The genre has even expanded to now include superhero tales, as well. Levinson is quick to reveal the first real horror of the film. It is the water. Quickly, we see how much the water is involved in the residents’ lives. The film is called The Bay, so, of course, it plays integral part to the story. It isn’t until we see a home movie of a fishing charter that The Bay’s true villain reveals itself. These “Isopods” are creepy crawlies that literally find their way into your body via the water, and then eat you from the inside out. The film is pretty bland up until the revelation. That WTF?! moment not only gets your blood running, but breathes new life into the film. 


Donohue’s character is essentially the main character. However, her retelling of the tale negates any fear we have for her situation. Obviously, she makes it. It is the little girl texting with her friend, the people secluded in the hospital wing, and the couple on a boat cruise with their newborn that tug at your heart. Their performances aren’t riveting, they’re just easily connectable to people we know and ourselves.


The film doesn’t deliver horrors in the typical horror movie sense. The horrors, here, are both the documentation and the realism behind it. A nuclear spill here, the over saturation of chemicals there, and a faith in technology lead to the disaster suffered by the people in The Bay


This film is not one for the personal library. The ending really lacks any horrific touch. The only character we have been with the entire time leaves us just as quickly as she arrived. Her testimony is horrific, yet, for some reason, she remains unscathed. This film had too many sad stories to not end on one more. Anything would have been better than what we were given. The Bay is a notch up for “found footage” and experimental filmmaking. The story is solid, it just lacks that final punch it was building to.

 

 

Top 5 Picks of the Week:
1. The Blob (Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray]
2. Killing Them Softl
3. Ministry of Fear (Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray]
4. Willow (Blu-ray / DVD Combo)
5. Who Framed Roger Rabbit: 25th Anniversary Edition (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo in Blu-ray Packaging)

ACTION / ADVENTURE / KUNG FU/ THRILLERS / WESTERNS

The Devil's in the Details Starring Ray Liotta, Emilio Rivera, Joel Mathews

The Devil's in the Details [Blu-ray] Starring Ray Liotta, Emilio Rivera, Joel Mathews

Dirty Dozen / Green Berets [Blu-ray]

Disclosure / Fatal Attraction [Blu-ray] Starring Michael Douglas, Demi Moore and Glenn Close

In Their Skin Starring James D'Arcy and Selma Blair

Killer Biker Chicks Starring Brenna Lee Roth and Sara Plotkin

Killing Them Softly Starring Brad Pitt, Scoot McNairy, Ben Mendelsohn and Ray Liotta

Kiss the Girls / Along Came a Spider Starring Morgan Freeman

Pressed Starring Luke Goss, Michael Eklund and Tyler Johnston

Time to Kill & The Pelican Brief [Blu-ray] Starring Matthew McConaghey, Denzel Washington and Julia Roberts

ANIME

Bleach Uncut Set 16

Dragon Ball Z Kai: Season Four [Blu-ray] Starring Sean Schemmel, Christopher R. Sabat

Dragon Ball Z Kai: Season Four Starring Sean Schemmel, Christopher R. Sabat

Hardcore Hospital

Mail Order Maiden 28

Maria Watches Over Us, Season 4 (Litebox)

Penguindrum Collection 2 [Blu-ray]

Queens Blade Complete

Shingu: Secret of the Stellar Wars Complete Series (Litebox)

Trigun: Complete Series Box Set (Classic) Starring Johnny Yong Bosch, Jeff Nimoy, Dorothy Melendrez

Vampire Princess Miyu TV Complete Collection

CARTOONS

Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman [Blu-ray] Starring Kevin Conroy, Hector Elizondo, Kyra Sedgwick and Kelly Ripa

Brother Bear / Brother Bear 2 (Blu-ray + DVD) Starring Joaquin Phoenix, Jeremy Suarez, Jason Raize

Faeries Starring Kate Winslet

Happy Feet / Happy Feet 2 [Blu-ray]

The Hunchback Of Notre Dame / The Hunchback Of Notre Dame II (Blu-ray + DVD) Starring Tom Hulce, Demi Moore, Jason Alexander and Mary Kay Bergman

Mulan / Mulan II (Blu-ray + DVD) Starring Ming-Na Wen, Eddie Murphy, Miguel Ferrer and Pat Morita

Rise of the Guardians - Limited Edition Easter Gift Pack (DVD +2 Hopping Toy Eggs) Starring Chris Pine, Alec Baldwin, Jude Law and Isla Fisher

Rise of the Guardians (Three-Disc Combo: Blu-ray 3D / Blu-ray / DVD / Digital Copy + UltraViolet) Starring Chris Pine, Alec Baldwin, Jude Law and Isla Fisher

Rise of the Guardians - Limited Edition Easter Gift Pack (Blu-ray / DVD / Digital Copy + 2 Hopping Toy Eggs) Starring Chris Pine, Alec Baldwin, Jude Law and Isla Fisher

Rise of the Guardians Starring Chris Pine and Alec Baldwin

Scooby-Doo & The Legend of the Vampire [Blu-ray] Starring Frank Welker, Nicole Jaffe, Heather North Kenney

Superman: Brainiac Attacks [Blu-ray] Starring Tim Daly, Powers Boothe, Dana Delany and Lance Henriksen

Watchmen: Comp Motion Comic / Watchmen: Tales of [Blu-ray]

CLASSICS

Ben-Hur / Ten Commandments [Blu-ray]

Casablanca / African Queen [Blu-ray] Starring Humphrey Bogart, Katharine Hepburn, Ingrid Bergman

Zulu Dawn (Blu-ray / DVD Combo) Starring Burt Lancaster, Peter O'Toole, Simon Ward and Bob Hoskins

Criterion Collection

Ministry of Fear (Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] Starring Ray Milland

Ministry of Fear (Criterion Collection) Starring Ray Milland

The Blob (Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] Starring Steve McQueen

HORROR

Curandero: Dawn Of The Demon Starring Sergio Acosta, Gizeht Galatea and Carlos Gallardo

Grave Encounters 2 Starring Richard Harmon, Sean Rogerson, Leanne Lapp

Grave Encounters 2 Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack Starring Richard Harmon, Sean Rogerson, Leanne Lapp

Monster Starring Miroslava, Carlos Navarro and José María Linares-Rivas

Savage Water + Death By Invitation Starring Shelby Leverington, Aaron Phillips and Norman Paige

Spiders (3D/2D Blu-Ray) Starring Patrick Muldoon, Christa Campbell and William Hope

Spiders Starring Patrick Muldoon, Christa Campbell and William Hope

Taint, The (Blu-ray + DVD Combo) Starring Drew Bolduc and Colleen Walsh

Till Sunset [Blu-ray] Starring Giles Alderson, Eleanor James and Shane Sweeney

Underground Lizard People Starring Caitlin Gold and Jared Cohen

MODERN CLASSICS on BLU-RAY

Green Mile / Forrest Gump [Blu-ray]

Hitchcock (Blu-ray / DVD Combo) Starring Anthony Hopkins, Helen Mirren, Scarlett Johansson

Saturday Night Fever / Grease [Blu-ray]

SCIENCE FICTION / FANTASY

Blade Runner: The Final Cut [Blu-ray] Starring Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young

Life of Pi [Blu-ray] Starring Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Tabu and Gérard Depardieu

Life of Pi [Blu-ray 3D] Starring Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Tabu and Gérard Depardieu

Life of Pi Starring Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Tabu and Gérard Depardieu

Mystikal Starring Garate Iban and Ceballos Savitri

Storage 24 Starring Noel Clarke and Colin O'Donoghue

Storage 24 [Blu-ray] Starring Noel Clarke and Colin O'Donoghue

Who Framed Roger Rabbit: 25th Anniversary Edition (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo in Blu-ray Packaging) Starring Bob Hoskins, Charles Fleischer, Christopher Lloyd

Willow (Blu-ray / DVD Combo)

The Yakuza and the Mermaid Starring Peter Hertsgaard, Georgiana Avram and Takumi Mitobe

TV LAND

Father Dowling Mysteries: The Third and Final Season

Law & Order: Criminal Intent: The Final Year Starring Vincent D'Onofrio and Kathryn Erbe

Hercules: The Legendary Journeys: The Complete Fourth Season Starring Kevin Sorbo

The Mob Doctor: The Complete Series Starring Jordana Spiro, William Forsythe and Floriana Lima

Ripper Street Starring Matthew Macfadyen, Jerome Flynn, Adam Rothenberg

Ripper Street [Blu-ray] Starring Matthew Macfadyen, Jerome Flynn, Adam Rothenberg

Xena: Warrior Princess: The Complete Fourth Season Starring Lucy Lawless

BOX SETS

Alfred Hitchcock: The Classic Collection [Blu-ray] Starring Ingrid Bergman, Cary Grant, Claude Rains and Joan Fontaine

 



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