8 of the best 'found footage' films that you need to watch

  • 8 of the best 'found footage' films that you need to watch

Since the phenomenal success of The Blair Witch Project, movies have been trying to utlise the 'found footage' style to make films seem much more terrifying with shaky camerawork and deep breathing.

But while some may have fallen a bit flat, others like Cloverfield and the Spanish [REC] have captured cinema-goers' imaginations.

So here are some of the finest 'found footage' films that you may not have heard of, but should definitely check out...

Chronicle

A large glowing object gives three teenagers telekinetic abilities, which they initially use to cause mischief and mayhem.

But as their powers grow stronger, they start to use them for darker and more menacing purposes.

One of the surprise hits of 2012, Chronicle beat The Woman in Black and The Grey in the box office, as it took an interesting and exciting new take on the 'found footage' genre.

It secured director Josh Trank the job on the Fantastic Four reboot along with actor Michael B. Jordan who will play The Human Torch.

The Troll Hunter

Norwegian dark fantasy sees a group of students investigating a series of bear killings and discover that the hunter they suspect as a bear poacher actually hunts giant trolls.

The students then join him on a hunt as they must track down several dangerous trolls who have escaped.

The film's special effects are surprisingly good with a budget nowhere near that of a Hollywood movie, and an engaging storyline made this a success in its native Norway, with an American remake in the works - so look forward to that.

Europa Report

A sci-fi thriller which sees a privately-funded crew land on Europa, Jupiter's fourth largest moon to find potential sources of life.

With a series of setbacks and losing contact with mission control befalling the crew, they make a strange and startling discovery.

With an array of actors from around the world, including District 9's Sharlto Copley, despite it not getting a theatrical release and going straight to Video-on-Demand, Europa Report is an intense and suspenseful thriller that wowed critics.

V/H/S

Why have one found footage horror films, when you can have a whole bunch?

With six different segments, each with a different director behind the camera, the stories are tied together as being found on VHS tapes in a creepy decrepit house. 

With zombies, vampires, room invaders, alien experiements and poltergeists - it is a mixed bag of found footage horror.

If that isn't enough for you, two V/H/S sequels have also been made.

The Sacrament

Borrowing heavily from the harrowing events of 1978's Jonestown Massacre in Guyana, where over 900 members of a cult committed mass suicide, a VICE documentary team visit a community formed by a religious leader in a bid to find one of the team's sister.

Members of the drug-free utopian Eden Parish provide interviews how they were saved, but the filmmakers find a group that wants to leave and when the documentary team and dissenters try to escape, things turn ugly.

Produced by horror icon Eli Roth, The Sacrament's pacing may be too slow for some, but for horror fans, the building terror serves to instil a dread-inducing horror.

The Tunnel

The faux-documentary set in the abandoned railway tunnels in Sydney, with a journalist and her video team trying to expose a cover-up about missing homeless people and an aborted government plan to release water trapped in the underground tunnels.

The team are then stalked through the tunnels by an unknown creature while they try to escape from the tunnels.

The Tunnel picked up a few horror movie awards and its use of social media was recognised as the horror was partially crowd-funded and then distributed legally through file sharing site BitTorrent, giving people the opportunity to watch the film completely free.

Look

A different take on the found footage genre, Look is composed entirely of material shot on surveillance cameras and pushes on the public paranoia about CCTV cameras following our every move.

Following the intertwining lives of numerous characters set in a warehouse, gas station, school, a mall and an office building over the course of a week.

The film records the violent and unpleasant happenings in the characters' lives, in this disturbing and thought-provoking drama.

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Comments

Have only seen the first three (Chronicle, The Troll Hunter, Europa Report) but yes, I'd agree they are amongst the better examples of the found-footage genre.

Troll Hunter and Europa Report were great! I'll have to check these others out!