Tape 407 or Area 407 as it is also known, is a found-footage horror movie directed by Dale Fabrigar and Everette Wallin. It stars Abigail Schrader, Samantha Lester and James Lyons.
A found-footage horror that sticks rigidly to the formula set out by countless others before and copied by countless others after. On that front, it can at least be praised for being an undeniable found-footage movie. On another front though, one more familiar to regular found-footage watchers, it ticks every single trope box to the point of frustration.
Yes, everything you either love or hate about found-footage is here.
The story surrounds a New York to LA flight that hits turbulence and ends up crashing in a remote area. An area that will be revealed to be a government testing area. Testing what exactly? Well, the few survivors who managed to survive the crash are about to find out.
The footage we’re about to see comes from Trish’s (Schrader) video camera. She was on the plane with her sister Jesse (Lester) and like all camera operators in these movies, has decided to film and capture everything. No matter what and for reasons that make no sense considering the situation they find themselves in.
So, what are they and the other survivors being hunted by? Well, it’s not always easy to make out thanks to the shaky camera work and darkness but they appear to smaller raptor-style dinosaurs. It is as unexciting as it sounds and the arrival of the beasties sends the film careening off a cliff in regards to quality.
The early portion of the movie, the conversations (apparently completely ad-libbed) between characters is actually quite endearing. A chance to get to know everyone and it works well. The latter portion of the movie is the opposite as everyone just screams, shouts and talks nonsense. It feels like two different movies in regards to characters and dialogue.
All of that pales in comparison the film’s biggest flaws though and those relate to the filming style. It really is sickening at times, frustrating to watch and confusing as the camera is passed to character after character. It’s not fun and is certainly not tension building.
Is it the worst found-footage horror you’ll ever see? Absolutely not. The early portion of the film lifts it up a notch or two. However, it eventually just becomes so par for the course, there’s very little to praise. Least of all its ‘shocking’ ending that will likely elect nothing more than tired shrugs.
The Final Score - 3/10