As Above, So Below – Movie Review
As Above, So Below – R
Release Date: Fri 29 Aug 2014
As Above, So Below successfully blends elements of treasure hunting, found footage and scares into a fast-paces psychological thriller. Found footage is a very loose term nowadays that includes cameras worn by characters rather than specifically being a tape someone found that has frightening things left on it. This movie is certainly a point-of-view found footage style, with the characters each wearing small head-mounted cameras to allow for the multiple perspectives seen throughout.
While there are a few scenes that get into motion-sick running (particular in the opening sequence) the close quarters of the catacombs beneath Paris reduce the frame and make the movie much easier to watch than something like the original Blair Witch project.
Our main character, Scarlett (Perdita Weeks) is seeking out clues and following in her deceased father’s footsteps. Her father pushed her hard to study, and this explains why despite being a relatively young woman she knows four spoken languages and two dead ones. She does not, however know Aramaic and enlists her friend George (Ben Feldman) to accompany her to try and find an undocumented tunnel below the streets of Paris. Also along to help out are her cameraman and three local French catacomb enthusiasts who are familiar with the areas of the catacombs that are dangerous and illegal to enter.
As Above, So Below feels like a very thrilling and spooky Indiana Jones, with Scarlett and Ben solving puzzles and translating Aramaic clues against the clock, traps and suspicious sounds and apparitions. There are a few scenes with blood and graphic violence, but a slasher movie or gore-fest this is not.
The storytelling does a great job of moving the plot forward with plenty to think about after you leave the theater. It’s a movie I’d actually enjoy watching again just to see if there were clues I missed the first time around now that I know how things play out.
Cal, Aaron and I saw it in the theater and has a discussion afterward in the car: