The Bay

The Bay Image
Metascore
65

Generally favorable reviews - based on 20 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 49 Ratings

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  • Summary: Chaos breaks out in a small Maryland town after an ecological disaster occurs. (Roadside Attractions)

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 20
  2. Negative: 1 out of 20
  1. Reviewed by: David Cox
    Oct 29, 2012
    100
    Levinson has always been acutely interested in the minutiae of human behaviour, and it's this concern that makes The Bay the triumph that it is.
  2. Reviewed by: Jeannette Catsoulis
    Nov 1, 2012
    90
    This astonishingly effective environmental nightmare is based on reasoning that, if you've been following the science, seems all too possible.
  3. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Nov 4, 2012
    80
    Is it, on some level, '70s-style horror schlock dressed up with contemporary gimmicks? Sure, but don't act like that's a bad thing! It's schlock with honor, schlock with a conscience, schlock that speaks to the way we live now.
  4. Arizona Republic
    Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Nov 6, 2012
    70
    It's a small movie but an effective one, using found footage as a means to an end and not as an end in itself. More like it would be a welcome trend.
  5. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Nov 1, 2012
    63
    The Bay is better than a shallow exercise, but crabby horror fans may have preferred that Levinson took a real plunge.
  6. Reviewed by: Karina Longworth
    Nov 1, 2012
    60
    Despite a handful of legit creepy moments, the film's concern with superficial realism prevents it from really hitting home; its fuzzy, fractured depiction of disaster never comes close to conjuring the "holy shit it could happen here don't touch that doorknob" real-world paranoia of last year's artfully Hollywood-ized disaster film, "Contagion."
  7. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    Nov 1, 2012
    25
    The Oscar-winning director of "Rain Man" - whose last film, the abysmal documentary "PoliWood" never went much further than the Tribeca Film Festival - demonstrates he can make a shakycam found-footage horror movie every bit as fake-looking, clumsy and unscary as your average college student working on a $200 budget.

See all 20 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 18
  2. Negative: 5 out of 18
  1. Jul 7, 2014
    10
    More than just a good eco-horror flick with documental-style direction, The Bay is a fantastic examination of the political intrigue brewingMore than just a good eco-horror flick with documental-style direction, The Bay is a fantastic examination of the political intrigue brewing beneath the "community-interest" campaign while constantly leaving us breathless with some visually impressive elements of horror and shocking discoveries. Expand
  2. Apr 5, 2013
    8
    By far the best "found footage" I've seen in recent years. Realistic and pretty close to what could happen in real life, if we screw natureBy far the best "found footage" I've seen in recent years. Realistic and pretty close to what could happen in real life, if we screw nature too much. The fact that the film had no "main" heroes fighting with zombie hordes or supernatural beings, really added to the whole experience. Expand
  3. Jan 23, 2016
    8
    If you didn't like this movie, your taste is bad. It's a well crafted, scary and disturbing, and Barry Levinson made the film even greater.If you didn't like this movie, your taste is bad. It's a well crafted, scary and disturbing, and Barry Levinson made the film even greater. Blumhouse can't help themselves with these great films Expand
  4. Feb 26, 2013
    6
    It was only a matter of time before the found footage craze drew a bona-fide name-brand Hollywood filmmaker into its ongoing vortex. The storyIt was only a matter of time before the found footage craze drew a bona-fide name-brand Hollywood filmmaker into its ongoing vortex. The story behind "The Bay" is that the US government coverup an--outbreak that wiped out the town of Claridge, MD in 2009. All cameras and footage related to what happened were confiscated by the government, but now someone has compiled and the truth about what happened in Claridge, MD beings to leak out. Although this is placed in the horror genre--containing some tension and gruesome moments-this is comes of more of an eco-scare. The footage is a combination of the news filming of Stephanie and her cameraman, as well as other various form's of camera footage.This combination of POV adds an element of interest and realism to the film, expanding the storyline beyond what could have been achieved by a single camera held by a single individual. The movie jumps around town to give more comprehensive coverage of the crisis--sort of like if "Contagion" was told from a first-person point of view, and isn't nearly as good. The film follows the findings of a pair of marine biologists, who discovers species of benign organisms that appear to be evolving--into something more mischievous.

    Levinson seems more interested in spreading a green message--than terrifying.viewers. There's nothing wrong with that, but audiences lured in by the trailers may be disappointed despite being well produced. The best found footage films "Paranormal Activity" and "REC's", immerse you fully in the hellish situation, and make you feel as if you're part of the terror. "The Bay" simply never does that, but it's an admirable attempt at something a bit different.
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  5. Mar 5, 2015
    6
    Summary: I really liked The Bay, because it looked realistic and its plot is thought-provoking. 61/100 [C+]

    Directed by the academy award
    Summary: I really liked The Bay, because it looked realistic and its plot is thought-provoking. 61/100 [C+]

    Directed by the academy award winner Barry Levinson and produced by Jason Blum, "The Bay" is an above-average, found-footage horror film. First, let me say that the trailer is great, the premise is terrific and Barry Levinson is a very talented director. The entire film feels quite genuine, the found-footage adds lots of veracity and the acting is quite good. I really liked the performance of the news reporter. Moving on, even though its running time is very short (84 min), it didn't deliver enough scares or entertainment to me. Everything was kind of boring, but I give it credit because it looked extremely real the whole time.

    I'm pretty sure that a huge part of the audience that disliked The Bay did not even try to understand the message of the movie. This ecological issue could actually happen in real life! It was so thought-provoking. Moving on, as I said the performances were great, just some extras were kinda weak. Kether Donohue's performance was excellent, she's a news reporter in the film and is documenting all the catastrophe in this little town; her character was dynamic and smart. In addition, she's not the only one important here, throughout the film we can see some scientists talking through Skype about this parasite and all these scenes were quite effective and interesting.

    Do not expect jump-scares or lots of gore. This movie is more about scientists, laboratories, death fishes, people infected in hospitals and stuff like that. The Bay boasts a thought-provoking story about public services, in this case water contaminated, eww. Levinson cares about the human perspective and he gives us some nice camera shots in hospitals and streets. He smartly uses a found-footage style to present us his intriguing tale. Although at times he forgot how to maintain the film entertaining, I was satisfied by the end of it. I remember that I kept looking at a glass of water for minutes thinking... where does it come from? How clean is it?

    It was very thrilling sometimes and it had two or three effective jump-scares, but two of them are in the trailer. A huge part of the scares and surprises were spoiled by the trailer, so please don't see it. Overall, it's one of the most believable found-footage films I've seen, even though it was not as entertaining as I thought. I only recommend it if you like documentaries or movies about ecological issues, pandemics or virus. The Bay is a horror film for a very specific audience, this is not that type of horror movie which you watch with some friends at night. I recommend you to see it alone, and judge it by yourself. [C+]
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  6. Dec 19, 2012
    3
    This movie, like most found footage films these days, has its highs and its lows. Mostly lows. It documents a parasitic outbreak in a smallThis movie, like most found footage films these days, has its highs and its lows. Mostly lows. It documents a parasitic outbreak in a small town. The course of the outbreak is captured and the movie tracks several characters throughout the day. And that's it. Although the parasites are suitably disgusting and some of the scenes are quite tense, it's just not enough to carry a movie. There are no "wow" moments to really speak of. No real sense of creativity. And there is absolutely no payoff. The movie just sort of ends without any kind of resolution or finality. And to top it off, the one thing that I absolutely hated was the narrator. The girl who is supposed to guide the viewers through this traumatic event is about as lifeless as tree bark. Her monotone voice drones on and on and what's worse, she completely spoils any surprise. You see characters on screen then you hear her say "oh by the way, this person died later". Wow, way to build suspense. I say skip this one unless you're really bored and have an hour and a half to kill. Collapse
  7. Feb 15, 2013
    1
    this film gives you no characters to invest in, leaving you no reason to care about the infection or the town and its inhabitants. this isthis film gives you no characters to invest in, leaving you no reason to care about the infection or the town and its inhabitants. this is recycled material, produced poorly. shame, was looking forward to it Expand

See all 18 User Reviews

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