films seen
average score
Spain - 55 years old
Alive and kicking
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Prime Spanish horror director who rarely ventures outside his niche. Balagueró has been looking for his best form after he quit the [rec] franchise, but if you're up for some solid horror cinema, pretty much his entire oeuvre's a safe bet.


[Rec] is an extreme thrill that aptly uses modern techniques to its best advantage, creating a truly creepy and tense atmosphere where so many films before it have failed.

If you didn't like the first film, I can't see how you'll like this one. Stylistically the films are very much alike, though the directors made better use of the style this time around.

[Rec] 4: Apocalypse

[Rec] 4: Apocalipsis
2014 / 96m - Spain
[Rec] 4: Apocalypse poster

I always assumed Rec 4 was going to be the last film in the series, but Balaguero didn't really wrap things up after all, leaving plenty of room for possible sequels to come.

The Nameless

Los Sin Nombre
1999 / 102m - Spain
Horror, Thriller
The Nameless poster


2002 / 88m - USA
Darkness poster

Films to Keep You Awake: To Let

Películas para No Dormir: Para Entrar a Vivir
2006 / 68m - Spain
Horror, Thriller
Films to Keep You Awake: To Let poster


2022 / 100m - Spain
Venus poster

Balagueró latest is a slightly hesitant return to the horror genre. There are a few too many crime elements and the drama is given a bit too much legroom, but once the film reveals its true face it becomes clear why Balagueró was once considered one of the biggest talents in the horror genre.

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Lucia is a dancer in a discotheque. One night she robs the place and flees with a bag of pills. She's badly hurt and she turns to her sister Rocío for help. Rocío lives in a rundown apartment building with her daughter. She wants to move away from the place, but when Lucia arrives on her doorstep, Rocío decides to help her out.

The film builds up towards a lovely finale, only the way there is a little bumpy. The horror setup is cool, but the heist/robbery feels tacked on. I understand it's an attempt at misdirection, and I guess it works, but I'm just not won over by the concept. Other than that, this was another quality film by Balagueró, I just hope he'll be making an all-out, dedicated return to horror in the near future.

Sleep Tight

Mientras Duermes
2011 / 102m - Spain
Horror, Thriller
Sleep Tight poster

Way Down

2021 / 118m - Spain
Thriller, Crime
Way Down poster

A bit of a suprise, this film. Balagueró is a lauded horror director who has stuck with the genre since the very start of his career. But Way Down, despite the potential of its name, has nothing to do with horror. Instead, we get a modern heist flick, not unlike the first Mission:Impossible film.

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The bounty is a set of golden coins that Walter hauled from a sunken chip. After retrieving the coins, they are taken from him by the Spanish government and put in one of the best secured vaults in the world. Walter isn't just going to let this slide though and he assembles a team that'll help him get the coins back.

Way Down is pretty entertaining, but it's clear that Balagueró isn't too familiar with the genre yet. He sticks to what is known to work, but because of that it feels like a pretty basic, predictable film with just a few minor upgrades left and right. The cast is on point, the heist is fun, but there's not enough here that stands out. Decent entertainment.


2017 / 107m - Spain
Horror, Mystery
Muse poster

A story with literary roots that mixes fantasy, mystery and horror elements. It's a pretty conceptual genre film, so much in fact that Balagueró gets a little lost in the plot. It's an interesting story with enough potential to be great, but in the end the film lacks a little punch. Not one of Balagueró's best films, but still a worthy addition to his oeuvre.


2005 / 101m - Spain
Horror, Mystery
Fragile poster