Tag Archives: Théo Christine



by Hope Madden

Remember Quarantine (or Rec, for that matter)? Remember that moment when you realize you’re locked inside an apartment building, trapped with the ravenous undead?

OK, so that but spiders.

Nice, right?!

Sébastien Vanicek’s Infested (co-written with Florent Bernard) doesn’t steal from other movies as much as it mines the primal fears that have plagued the most effective horror movies from the beginning.

Kaleb (Théo Christine) is a well-meaning dumbass. He lives in a dump of a high rise, but he loves the place, loves the neighbors, and cherishes the memory of his mother. That’s why, unlike his sister Manon (Lisa Nyarko), Kaleb doesn’t want to leave. In fact, he’s made a cozy home in his room for any number of exotic little beasties—the latest of which he just picked up from the super-secret back room of a dodgy shop.

“Careful, it’s probably poisonous,” the shopkeeper calls as Kaleb carries his rubber-banded plastic container and the very poisonous, extremely nasty spider inside.

Jumping ahead, Kaleb does not heed the warning.

Apartment horror can be so creepy when it’s done well: dark hallways, grimy elevators, creepy parking garages, too many floors until safety, and loads of places for spiders to nest. Vanicek makes excellent use of these spaces, and he shows solid instincts for creature FX—when to go practical, when to show little, when to show lots (and lots and lots). But his film succeeds on the lived-in world of these neighbors and friends.

Christine (Gran Turismo) delivers messy, loving authenticity as the guy who cares deeply and screws up everything. Finnegan Oldfield (Final Cut) is even better, and he brings with him a realism and natural charisma that cements the rag tag band of survivors as human beings to root for.

That realism doesn’t extend fully to the arachnid horror. Their reproductive mechanisms, their feeding habits, growth spurts—well, they’re not supposed to be from deep space or a nuclear accident, so the extremes seen in the building definitely strain credibility.

But damn! That doesn’t make it any less creepy! You may find yourself shaking out your sleeves and pulling the drawstring tight around your hoodie. I did. But at least the cockroaches are under control.