Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes
New York Times:
A low-budget horror anthology with segments both ghastly and moronic ...
All told, V/H/S brings some cohesion to the Wild West of indie horror filmmaking, and seems destined to become a key artifact of a DIY era.
This horror anthology collects six shorts of varying quality, all purported to be found footage. My favorite is Ti West's Second Honeymoon.
Eric D. Snider,
Cinema's first found-footage horror anthology suggests that there's still some life left in these old tropes.
Los Angeles Times:
At nearly two hours, the gimmick punctures a hole in itself, causing ambience bleed-out.
The film also plays to the strengths of the found-footage format, proving that sometimes the scariest things are the ones you can barely see.
All of the short films are genuinely unnerving, and the point-of-view camerawork is, at times, startling.
New York Post:
"V/H/S" puts the majority of today's mainstream "scary" movies to shame; perhaps the solution is to cut them all down to about 15 minutes, and fund them on a shoestring.
Two hours of nausea-inducing shaky cam footage that fails to tell a coherent or engrossing central story.
What's the point? None of the segments is particularly compelling. Strung together, it's way too much of a muchness.
An ingenious hybrid: part Godardian art film, part abstract video experiment, part sleazy shocker, and all self-castigating interrogation of what film-theory types call the "male gaze."
The mostly played-out found footage aesthetic has its limitations, and V/H/S doesn't escape all of them. But the collected directors do manage to make many of those limitations into the films' strengths.
Mainly, the omnibus film feels undercooked, even on the grounds of its forced technological setup.
The segments vary in quality and the whole overstays its welcome at nearly two hours.
In too many of the shorts, bad acting quickly undermines the "authenticity" the aesthetics labor to achieve.
"V/H/S" probably sounded great in the pitch meeting, but it loses all luster through some shoddy execution.