Wednesday, June 27, 2012
Exit Humanity (2011)
Wanna know one of the best things that I love about horror? When I've grown tired of a particular sub-genre, ready to write it off with any mention of the word 'zombie' or 'vampire', a film comes out of left field to smack me over the head. This fine period piece zombie epic missed my radar and it was a wonderful surprise. No way this film escapes my year end 'best of' list. It's that fantastic.
Exit Humanity focuses on a civil war vet named Edward (please don't get visions of Twilight in your head) who has to contend with a deadly zombie outbreak. The film does a wonderful job in the early goings, intertwining the histrionics along with the plague and bringing us to the current predicament of our war vet. This man has lost his wife to the rotting hands of the undead and his son is nowhere to be found. He sets out to search for him but becomes painfully heartbroken when he finds that he's become one of their numbers and he reacts quickly by putting him down.
The crux of our story involves Edward as he travels by foot, taking the ashes of his son to a special location that he promised to bring him to one day. His dedication and narration of events (as told through his journal) which accompanies the whole of our film is both heartwarming and sad. Along the way, he meets a man who is fending for himself and looking for his lost sister. They decide to join forces and offer to help each other out.
Along the way, they come across a group of rogue former soldiers and their leader, a General Williams (played by genre vet Bill Moseley). I have to say this is the best performance I've seen from him since, well, The Devil's Rejects. He's not just collecting a paycheck here. He plays the General with such cruelty and lack of compassion and his 'me first' attitude shows with every word that is spoken. We find that the sister is being held by the group and as our story unfolds further, she comes to play a pivotal role in the film. Not only in gaining the affection of Edward, but also becoming the focus of what General Williams and his men are actually looking for.
Make no mistake, even though this is film heavily driven by it's characters, there is plenty of gore here and some really great practical effects. But the story of one man's journey, his goal of obtaining inner peace with what is going on around him, and ultimately his rebirth, is really the main driving force behind the film and what makes it unique. It stands head and shoulders above most zombie films. In fact, this is the film that The Dead wishes it could be.
Check this one out ASAP via various VOD services. Scratch that, pay an extra $5 and just buy it now on sale at Amazon for $10.95. Link
Seriously, this one is not to be missed. I know this term gets thrown around a lot and it's a bit silly, but this one is an instant classic and essential viewing for me. Oh, and I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the cinematography. Absolutely gorgeous.
Cortez the Killer