Originally titled El bar, The Bar is a 2017 Spanish mystery thriller set in downtown Madrid. The ensemble cast consists of some typical character tropes, like the harmless crazy guy turned heel and the first shot of the final girl. But eventually the twists push the likable characters to desperate measures and the plot into atypical territory.
Of course the last 20 minutes are unnecessarily drawn out, and the decisions are silly. The antagonist has somehow become a god among men and the Hollywood-esq third act stakes seep into what was a fairly enjoyable story-driven film.
With a bit of script doctoring and a revised third act focusing more on low, slow intense hide-and-seek survival than bang-crash choreographed action, I actually think The Bar would make a decent American remake.
What made The Bar better than average was that I couldn’t actually predict what would happen next; sometimes because the decisions were inconceivable. But I was along for the ride and figuring out the mystery.
With a 6.3 on IMDB and 83% on Rotten Tomatoes I give The Bar a solid 7/10.