starring Chris Pine, Lou Taylor Pucci, Piper Perabo and Emily VanCamp
written and directed by Alex and David Pastor
The Japanese title for this is “Phase 6.” It was sooooo boring! Some plague has practically extinguished all human life and a small band of survivors are roaming America looking for sanctuary. No gasoline. No food. No water. No medicine. No cure. No survivors. Think of other end-of-the-world pathogen movies: The Andromeda Strain (1971 original - the 2008 re-make was terrible),The Omega Man (1971), The Stand (1994, a terrible movie based on the equally terrible book by Stephen King), Outbreak (1995), 28 Days Later (2002 British horror, not to be confused with the 2000 American drama28 Days), I Am Legend (2007, a re-make of The Omega Man and better than the Charlton Heston original), and The Happening (2008). I last saw Chris Pine playing Captain James T. Kirk in Star Trek (2009). He’s just the same - all mouth. I’m not overly fond of him.
I wanted more of a story. I wanted to know the background of the deadly contagion. Not provided. I wanted to know the meaning of the Japanese title “Phase 6,”which implies that the film would tell the unfolding story of a deadly disease through its course. Frankly, I was expecting some kind of zombie movie, Phase 6 being the stage where those who were thought to be dead come back to life to add to the horror. But no.
These kinds of post apocalypse stories make one wonder how one would behave if death is all around. Turn on our loved ones and other fellows? Most likely. Keep civility and order even to the end? Hopefully. Crisis can tell us a lot about human behavior and the ways we react when emergencies obliterate familiar rules and temporary societies must emerge in their place. Kafkaesque is one possibility.