Oh my, aliens are invading us again! Taking shelter in our bodies, snatching us from our conscious and stealing the power from our society and the world!
Well… not quite actually, Viral (2016) it’s an infected-outbreak kind of story. The title and synopsis could trick us into thinking it has something to do with a “virus”, but doesn’t go in that direction either. What would happen if we got infected with an abusive, fast and hungry parasite (worm) that not only harvest in us but can control us to some extent too…? (Sorry Alien, you just kill your host) Not an easy thought to ponder every time we think of our health but it’s sadly possible in lots of scenarios, not a matter of creativity, it is indeed a real constant threat in life but obviously not so exaggerated (as far as we know).
This film poses an interesting idea (even thought is not the most original concept), a worm like viral parasite is getting stronger and wider over town but nobody in our stellar cast of teenagers are actually paying attention to the news and all warnings on the media, so the grim scenario is getting closer and closer to affect the school and the surroundings of Emma (our lead) her sister Stacey, plus her love interest Evan.
Not really scary or tense along the line, it grew a little bit of suspense in the first 30 minutes but then it got to a smaller and condensed direction. Not quite a “coming of age” feels to the narrative of characters but it did have items of the recipe. Rebellion mostly, with a hint of “holding to family values and dreams”; was a constant matter throughout the movie, I was glad we didn’t have a lot of parties and sex to derail us from the core road but it did manage a good use of the “viral” sense. With the closed up camera shots on the kissing and sex vibes between people around all environments it was a good way to remind us how easy we can get infected, and the fact that vulnerability to these threats live in the closeness we have to each other physically… something to consider but not actually portrayed as a critique.
So, the film does nothing good to build up what happens in the second and third act; it gets boring when its apparent ambition goes south and stays in a single point circling around till the straightforward plotline, takes off. Fear doesn’t star in the script.
The poster, which I actually liked in the first place, was misleading too. Colors and style told me I may be about to watch something on the line of “stylish” thriller with sci-fi elements, but neither, not even close. Anyway, that’s only a perspective I would have liked to see.
We have movies to run for us the many limitless possibilities there are about subjects that worry us in reality, so we can wonder more about the scenario that we’re fonder of and press on with our theories about it. That’s the beauty I find when I choose films that try to open the doors of the unknown with aspects that challenge what we think we know.
Just as easy a gossip, meme, scandal, or else gets viral in a matter of minutes, unavoidable in hours and massive in a few days, an outbreak of a parasite could get up to the same speed or worse. Take care people, and choose better movies but don’t let it pass the chance to check out stories that actually call your attention just because you read a bad review about it. Remember: “What is the most resilient parasite? Bacteria? A virus? An intestinal worm? An idea. Resilient… highly contagious.” – Dominic Cobb ·Inception·