Carriers

So, what about the monsters that go unseen? No, not the Invisible Man.. but the fears and terrors that are invisible to the naked eye. Disease. Germs. Viruses. Plague. It’s rare that we ever see it coming, at least not until a member of a surviving party starts to get sick. Fever. Chills. Bruises. Then it spreads, claiming each one of our friends and loved ones until there’s nothing left. Zombies are scary, but a man-made microscopic creation? Well, there’s really nowhere to run from that.

“The rules are simple. At least that’s how my brother sees it. One, avoid the infected at all costs. Their breath is highly contagious. Two, disinfect anything they’ve touched in the last 24 hours. Three, the sick are already dead, they can’t be saved. You break the rules, you die. You follow them, you live. Maybe.” ~Danny Green

SYNOPSIS

Original Movie Poster

An air born virus has claimed most of the world. Hundreds of thousands are dead and those who are still alive are trying to avoid getting infected while trying to scrounge for supplies and a place to regroup. Daniel and Brian Green are brothers travelling across the deserted roads of the southwestern United States towards Turtle Beach, a once treasured family getaway location. Along with them are Brian’s girlfriend, Bobby and Danny’s friend from school, Kate. The four of them face off with others looking for food and shelter, and battle with the desire to help others and the selfish need to survive. Suspicion and betrayal are a constant theme throughout the film along with feelings of isolation, fear of death and the loss of those we love the most.

THOUGHTS

It's the End of the World as We Know It

I think what surprised me most about this film were the actors that were in it. Chris Pine (Star Trek), Christoper Meloni (CSI: SVU), Kiernan Shipka and Mark Moses (Susie Draper and Duck Phillips of Mad Men). Low grade horror movies so rarely feature one talent, let alone a whole host of it. Maybe calling it ‘low grade’ is a bit of a low blow – the movie doesn’t suck, not in the least. Slow at times, it accurately captures the desolation that would follow a worldwide epidemic. It rides the highs and lows of a group of people trying to find a safe place to start again.

Survival of the Fittest

The script is well written. There are several scenes that captured human connection in difficult times quite remarkably. One in particular involves the little girl, Jodie (who is infected) and Bobby in a car divided by plastic sheeting and the woman is teasing her about her favorite television show. It’s a warm and personal exchange which makes it all the more devastating when the group decides to leave Frank (Jodie’s father) and her at an abandoned high school and venture back out on their own for fear that they would catch the virus from the child. The acting is also above-average, but that could be expected with the cast chosen for the roles. It centers in particular on the two brothers, how they grew up together and relied on each other throughout their whole lives – which is why they’re heading towards the vacation resort in the first place.

Daddy and Daughter

The relationship between Brian and Danny parallels that of the typical older/younger brother dynamic, but its so believable that it transcends cliche. The same can easily be said for the endearing family love between father and daughter in Frank and Jodie. In the end, we want the characters to survive, to find peace and a place to settle down because we care about them. So many horror movies fail to realize that it is important for the viewer to give a damn about the people in the film so that when they die, it has more of an impact and yes, a lot of them do die in this movie.

Gore is practically non-existent and I’m alright with that. Not every movie needs to have blood spurting out of every orifice to be worthwhile. There are some really nice effects when we see some of the infected – blood shot eyes, darkly colored veins – everything grim and bordering on non-human for those who have been ravaged by the spreading disease.

VERDICT

A solid movie. While it lacks the typical monster jumping out from the closet and blood and gore, it’s a devastating examination of what could happen with an outbreak. It leaves enough out to make the audience curious, and doesn’t drown us all in scientific jargon.

Netflix Rating:
My Rating: ***1/2

For people who are into the ‘End of the World’ themed films, this is a good choice. I’d like to thank Erica for the recommendation.

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2 Comments

  1. Dustin
    Posted March 5, 2012 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

    What I really enjoyed about this movie was the absolute lack of white hats and black hats. The cast are all at different points of descent through out the movie and it makes the film more enjoyable. Great movie and good review.

  2. Kim Brown
    Posted March 5, 2012 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Dustin! Glad you enjoyed it.

    I totally agree – the lack of a black or white perspective certainly adds a level of realism to the film, whereas so many post-apocalyptic/zombie/plague invasion movies have the very distinct ‘hero’ role filled out.

    If there’s ever a movie you’d like to recommend for me to review, please send me an email at:

    kim@geekin-out.com

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