It may sound like a J-horror film, but oh no, it’s Austrian!
Sometimes it feels like certain parts of the world cling to past decades. Japan must be in the 80’s. Mexico in the 70’s. And Austria…definitely the 90’s. Dead in 3 Days looks, sounds, and moves like a late 90’s teen slasher. Everything from the alternative rock music to the past-coming-back-to-haunt-you setup make the film a pretty standardized horror movie, but this tried-and-true formula is tried and is true for a reason. It works.
The only part where you are not so pleased with the teenagers is a scene in which they hold an MTV-music-video-style party inside a bronco. Smoking weed, drinking beer, and some girl is even doing coke—all while the vehicle shoots down the road. Come on guys. But the filmmakers handle it pretty well, because you’re thinking oh great, they are going to hit someone and we’ll get the I Know What You Did Last Summer story all over again. And they do hit something. But it turns out to be a small deer. They sober up pretty quickly, watching the poor animal suffer because of their actions. It’s probably my favorite scene in the whole movie because it’s a nice way to play with our expectations and an ominous foreshadow to the rest of the film. It sets the tone perfectly.Speaking of foreshadowing. We're not emphasizing this fish tank for any partiular reason. Really, we promise.
The deaths are nothing special. Sitting down to write this review, I had a tough time remembering all of them (I watched it about a week ago). But, in true 90’s fashion, it’s not really about the gore. It’s about finding out who is killing them and most importantly, why they are being killed. I won’t give away who the killer is, but I will say that the killer, when the identity is concealed and when it is revealed, is genuinely creepy.
Overall, the Dead in 3 Days is a good watch. Director Andreas Prochaska seems fairly new to the non-televised feature film and he’s done well with this one. The technical elements of the film are nothing to shout about, but none of them work against the movie by any means. I can’t say that I’m dying to see the sequel, but if the opportunity presents itself, I won’t look the other way.