Wednesday, December 2, 2015

The Colony

On Thanksgiving, Katie had us watch The Colony, because she likes sci-fi movies. The premise is that, in the future, humans invent weather machines. The machines screw up, somehow, creating a horrible ice age. Most of the surviving humans are in underground bunkers, trying to wait out the endless storm.

(The obvious solution to the problem is to disable the weather towers to turn off the snow, but only ONE group of humans thinks of this. This plan works, so good for them. Let's hope they spread that information to the rest of humanity.)

The movie takes place in Bunker 5, which has been ravaged by a flu that killed 20 people. Quarantine isn't working very well, and some people think they should just kill all sick people outright, for the good of the colony. In the middle of this, they get a distress signal from Bunker 7.

Three people make the two-day journey to Bunker 7, and at this point, the movie completely switches genres. It's not sci-fi anymore! Now it's a horror survival film! The people in Bunker 7 are basically zombies, intent on eating our three heroes. There's a huge fight and escape sequence, which ends with the bunker exploding.

The zombies give chase, and there's another huge fight/escape sequence by a bridge. Only one of our heroes survives this. He goes back to Bunker 5, where he has some minor conflict with the "kill all sick people" faction. Then the zombies attack, and we have the largest fight/escape sequence of the movie, which ends with our hero killing the zombie leader in a gruesome way. The end.

In general, the movie has gotten bad reviews. I think it's because of the abrupt and unexpected genre shift. I wanted to see them follow up on the subplot about the one colony that turned off the snow machine. My wife wanted to see more about the moral dilemma of whether or not to kill quarantined people. But those things weren't actually intended to be part of the focus; they were just a setup for zombie attack. Kind of disappointing.

I haven't seen any other modern zombie attack movies, so I don't know how to classify this one, in comparison to them. I'd say the fight scenes were pretty good and suspenseful. The special effects were good; there were only two points where our reaction was, "Oh, that is so obviously fake!", those points being a badly-done CGI shot by the bridge and the gruesome death of the zombie leader.

Overall, I'd say it's an okay movie. I would have liked it better, if it didn't pretend to be a sci-fi movie for the first third. I probably will never watch it again.

1 comment:

John said...

To be fair, there are no zombies in this movies, there are cannibals. Personally I find the idea of live humans resorting to cannibalism to survive, to be much scarier then zombies.