NOT ZOMBIES, BUT CLOSE
Film Review by Fiore
Ready for another zombie apocalypse movie? Technically, HERE ALONE doesn’t qualify. A raging virus has infected most of the world’s population, but rather than raising the dead, it turns the living into rabid cannibals. No need to worry about destroying the brain, or the old double tap rule. These crazies are just looney people, like Vancouver fans after they lose the Stanley Cup, and can be killed any which way.
The conflict in HERE ALONE is not man vs. zombie, but rather an introspective look at relationships in dire circumstances. The relationship of man and woman, and father and daughter are highlighted. It’s an interesting tale, but like so many films this year, it is one filled with really dumb moves and idiotic thinking by the main characters.
Ann, played by Lucy Walters, has a pretty nice set up. After the virus claimed her husband, seen in flash-backs and played by Shane West, and her little daughter, she establishes a lone existence with bare creature comforts, safe from the ravages of the infected.
One day, while returning home from a food run, Ann stumbles across Chris, played by Adam David Thompson, and his teenage step daughter, Olivia, played by Gina Piersanti. It’s the freaking apocalypse, so Ann should have enough sense to leave the pair to their own fates and continue with her life. But, no, she must help. She brings the Chris and Olivia back to her little retreat, only to discover they are more of a threat than the rest of the infected world.
1.1 KEY SCENES TO LOOK FOR:
1. THE FOOD RUN ORDEAL
2. THE KILL SHOT DILEMMA
HERE ALONE is written by David Ebeltoft. If the story transpired in any other setting, it would not be as effective. While I may disagree, and find incredulous, the actions taken by the lead characters, especially Ann, Ebeltoft appears to encapsulate the pretzel logic of the feminine mind. The film is directed by Rod Blackhurst.
There is nothing particularly creative in HERE ALONE. The infected are made-up like most zombies in apocalypse films. the cinematography is yeoman, and appears shot on poor stock, or in low res. Sound is consistent, so overall the film delivers what it should on the technical side.
Let’s take a look at the report card for HERE ALONE:
ACTING = C
CINEMATOGRAPHY = C
SOUND/MUSIC = C
EDITING = C
LIGHTING = D
SCRIPT = C
SFX = C
ACTION = C
The whole concept of a zombie apocalypse plays so much better without zombies, but rather virus infected people, who are still very much alive, regardless of how looney they are. The story, and human interaction are what makes HERE ALONE watchable. It is not particularly complimentary toward women. At one crucial moment, Ann must decide which kill shot to take. It is the running theme in HERE ALONE; choices between life and death; between the faithful and the faithless. It causes one to wonder how Ann ever had the wherewithal to make it this far on her own. By film’s end, it is apparent she chose unwisely.