With the spooky season imminent, and Halloween creeping up on the horizon, it’s time to prepare yourself for the arrival of a whole heap of horror movies. Speaking of which, step forward No One Gets Out Alive – a new horror-thriller from director Santiago Menghini.
No One Gets Out Alive stars Cristina Rodlo, Marc Menchaca, Victoria Alcock, and David Figlioli. The movie is available to stream on Netflix from today, and is a beautifully shot little movie designed for those who love small-scale stories of terror.
Based on the book of the same name by Adam Nevill, No One Gets Out Alive tells the story of a young woman called Ambar, who moves into an inexpensive apartment, while making her way through life. Ambar has little in the way of family, recently spent time looking after her sick mother, and is trying to make ends meet while working a low-paid job.
Things are tough, and they certainly don’t get easier when Ambar is conned out of her savings, and loses her job on the same day. But Ambar soon comes to discover this is just the tip of the iceberg, when she begins to experience something sinister lurking in her apartment block.
No One Gets Out Alive is a harsh, wintery tale, shot with low lighting, a bleak outlook, and an ever-increasing sense of dread. The film is part horror, part dark thriller, with a dash of social commentary, and includes one or two brutal moments for good measure.
It’s not nerve-shredding stuff, big on gore, but there are plenty of unsettling moments dotted throughout the film, with some designed to bring quick jump scares, and others looking to get under the skin. The focus of the film is on the horror of humanity, the harshness of life, the pain associated with grief, and the terror lurking in the shadows.
At the centre of the story is Ambar, who gets caught up in various problems. She’s a likeable character, and you can’t help but root for her, especially as she becomes surrounded by a great deal of darkness. Her story is one tinged with heartache and sadness, and both actress Christina Rodlo and director Santiago Menghini go to great lengths to put her through the wringer.
During the course of the movie, Ambar is emotionally battered and bruised, and is also spooked out by strange phenomena. This phenomena takes the shape of some very creepy looking ghosts, which are perfectly realised on screen. They are shot in such a way to send a shiver down the spine, and fill out the film’s supernatural quota.
Although it should be noted that while there is a significant supernatural element to this movie, this isn’t entirely the film’s focus. Things are going bump in Ambar’s apartment block, and we do get to see this played out, but the story is not quite so clear cut as it first appears, so don’t think this is all about ghosts and ghouls – and I consider this a good thing.
For me, No One Gets Out Alive works best when it is focusing on Ambar’s plight, rather than just the horror stuff. The trials and tribulations she goes through are what held my attention the most, and made this movie interesting.
Overall, this film works pretty well, although I do believe it could have benefited from a few extra minutes on the run-time. No One Gets Out Alive seems to rush to the finish line when it doesn’t need to, and one or two plot threads are left up in the air.
A spot of dodgy CGI towards the end of the film is also a slight misstep, which feels somewhat out of place. A practical effect instead of CGI would have been better suited, and certainly would have helped to maintain the terror at a key moment.
But these are slight issues, and certainly don’t detract from what is an accomplished horror film. No One Gets Out Alive is atmospheric, and offers just the right number of chills when needed.
It’s not something that is going to knock your socks off, but No One Gets Out Alive will make you feel a little uncomfortable, while holding your interest throughout. It’s the sort of film that is best enjoyed when the nights draw in and the temperature drops, and could be one to watch as we near October 31st.