Who’s ready for an Eli Roth-sized dose of carnage? Well, you better be because based on this first trailer for Aftershock, the movie is going to be light on plot and character development, but absolutely drenched in gore.
The Nicolás López-directed film stars Roth as Gringo, a recently divorced American tourist who buddies up with two Chilean guys so they can show him the way to the best local ladies. They manage to track down a trio of potentials – a Russian model, a hardcore party girl and her über responsible sister – and the gang ventures out to Valparaíso for a big night out. However, their clubbing fun is interrupted by a devastating earthquake. Gold stars to everyone who manages to make it through the initial hit, but, it turns out, the post-quake looters, escaped convicts and aftershocks are just as threatening - if not more so.
The film’s core concept is oozing with potential, so ever since the final product debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival to relatively solid reviews, anticipation has been sky-high. But, unfortunately, hopes are fading fast as more and more subpar promotional material hits the Web. First came this clip from the film’s epic club-set earthquake sequence and it doesn’t look real in the least. In fact, you can practically picture the DP standing on set, physically shaking the camera to get the quake effect. Next up was an unimpressive poster. It’s a movie with earthquake devastation and carnage at the core, but the two images used aren’t striking and don’t even fit together well, resulting in a disjointed final design.
As for this new trailer: First off, when you’ve only got one minute and 40 seconds to work with, you don’t waste it on tacky dialogue like, “Every girl I meet, I have to download some new app.” What does that even mean? The sequence showing the guys having a good time in Chile works well enough, but it would be nice to isolate the main characters so we can have a better sense of who’s who, once everything comes crashing down. And as for the material that follows, without the text explaining, “The only thing more terrifying than mother nature is human nature,” it would be close to impossible to figure out exactly what we’re supposed to take from the post-quake portion of the film.
With a trailer that makes Aftershock look straight-to-DVD quality, I’ll have to hold tight to those positive reviews to keep myself on board until the film gets its theatrical release next year.
And is it just me, or is it the slightest bit insensitive to base a gore-fest on an earthquake that claimed hundreds of lives and robbed 9% of the local population of their homes just two years ago? Hey, I'm all for some campy blood and guts, but I do have a heart.
Follow Perri on Twitter @PNemiroff