Movie Reviews

'SX Tape': A disgrace to found-footage genre

By Loh Yong JianMovies - 30 October 2014 2:46 PM | Updated 2:46 PM

'SX Tape': A disgrace to found-footage genre

Sx Tape trailer

Our Rating

1/5 Stars

There are two guys and two girls trapped in an abandoned hospital with an apparition, and you watch the events unfold from the camera lens of a guy obsessed with recording everything.

This might be a painfully reductive way to describe this horror flick, but it would be hard to imagine anyone working up excitement over ‘SX Tape’.

It is a headless show that struggles to kick up any sort of momentum or tension, and the scares sputter out quicker than you can melt a pat of butter on the stove. It is found-footage genre at its most straightforward and driest form.

There is really no pressing reason to watch it in cinemas or otherwise, despite its perfectly timed release in the Halloween window.

EMPTY CHARACTERS

Things might not have been so had ‘SX Tape’ offered its characters more personality and things to do.

As it stands, you are left to trail the nudity-glazed sexual exploits of a young couple from their apartment to the changing room of a clothing store to their car and finally to the deserted hospital.

For dramatic effect, the female half of the couple, Jill (Caitlyn Folley), happens to be an erotic painter, and her boyfriend and cameraman, Adam (Ian Duncan) is the one who finds the disused hospital. 

By the time the couple decide to explore the hospital as a potential venue for her art gallery, you are no nearer to learning any more of the protagonists than what you already know at the start.

While Jill is bent on touring the forgotten venue, Adam is reluctant, and that is just to embroider the bare dialogue with an overly long debate about whether they should check out the hospital.

During the visit, Jill begins to bleed profusely from the nose after seemingly being possessed and she has to call best friend Elly (Diana Garcia) and her boyfriend Bobby (Chris Coy) to pick her up.

Later, Jill inexplicably agrees to return to the hospital with Elly and Bobby, much to chagrin of Adam.

MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING

Then you wait for the characters to be killed. The only problem is that you need patience – loads of it.

If the found-footage genre is a nod to the resourcefulness of a director who knows how to manufacture tension and scares on a shoestring budget, ‘SX Tape’ is a disgrace to that ability.

Besides the occasional creaks, metal pipes banging against each other and a mysterious hum, nothing much happens in the movie, just several nauseous shots of one character screaming for another character while sprinting down an empty hallway.

The movie is so cash-strapped that a frame of Adam being shot in the leg does not even show any blood, so the subsequent shot of the actor clutching at his make-believe wound looks terribly awkward.

This is the ‘SX Tape’ experience, by and large, though there are some embellishments.

An old case file and a footage of a young woman being molested by a doctor at least rescue some semblance of a motivation for why the victims are being tormented.

But it is not nearly enough for this mercifully cut 82-minute-long potboiler of a movie to exist.

‘SX Tape’ opens in cinemas 30 October 2014


Movie Photos

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Sx Tape
  • Sx Tape

    (2014)
  • Rated
    R21 /
    Genre
    Horror
  • Language
    Eng
  • (2 Reviews)