Saturday, September 21, 2013

THE COLONY: The Natural Progression of the Day After Tomorrow

I used to watch The Day After Tomorrow every night. I mean that quite literally. I know that some of you would find it to be a bit of pop-drivel filled with Al Gore's handbook of ideas with little to no scientific fact to back it up. If all that's true, than that drivel terrified me, created an amazing amount of empathy for the characters and drove me into at least one argument in a bar defending the finer points of An Inconvenient Truth despite the fact that I don't talk about politics or global warming in bars. So I love and feared The Day After Tomorrow, a movie that features runaway global warming that triggers a cooling trend that yields a massive superstorm blizzard that freezes a great portion of the planet. That movie ends. Hopeful or at least hoping that we learned something and that the people of Earth would endure the cold, new world, forever changed. That's where a movie like The Colony picks up (though not a sequel). In the cold, with hope and fear, post-freezing trend and where the enemies ain't the polar bears or the wolves, but humanity itself.

Synopsis from Image Entertainment:

Laurence Fishburne (The Matrix), Bill Paxton (Aliens) and Kevin Zegers (Mortal Instruments), headline an all-star cast in this savage and unrelenting thriller about mankind's greatest enemy: himself. As an endless winter engulfs Earth, humans struggle to survive in remote underground outposts. When Colony 7 receives a distress call from a nearby settlement, Sam (Zegers) and Briggs (Fishburne) race through the snow on a dangerous rescue mission. What they find at the desolate base could mean mankind’s salvation—or its total annihilation.

Trailer:


The Colony is a well executed post-apocalyptic thriller featuring the battle to survive against mother nature and against humankind itself. I can safely say that this is a terrifying prospect. In the cold with limited food stores and people are getting sick, restless and power hungry. The Colony plays on the fears of man in a world that is not longer civilized. It also conveys effectively the true struggle of the end of humanities reign supreme, the struggle to survive humanities need to dominate and rule. 

I'll tell you that when I saw Bill Paxton's name on the one sheet I figured we were in for an over-dramatic, somewhat hokey, film with sour dialogue that would be laughable at best and at worst unwatchable. This is not the case (though there are moments where Paxton's voice hints at action movie bravado extraordinaire). His performance is darker than you've seen him in a while and more natural. Lawrence Fishburne plays the lead role in the middle of the downfall of humanity... what else is new? In all fairness he embodies this role well and brings all his Matrix tips and tricks to a group trapped underground in the new Ice Age. 

Now there's a twist that I won't ruin for you, but it has quite a bit to do with popular post-apocalyptic trends in pop culture at the moment. But there's a twist on the twist or least a variation that sort of works. I'll tell you that the ultimate end game to the mystery through which we follow the protagonists is not the highlight of the movie. The desolation is the highlight. The conveyance of winter cold and loneliness and the Hell that man creates in the absence of order. It's not quite as claustrophobic as a movie like The Divide though, and it isn't nearly as depraved. Read that as making it more fan friendly. 

This film is a nice companion to The Day After Tomorrow, and while it isn't a sequel or related in anyway, I'd say that if you enjoyed that picture, you'll like this one. Fans of climate change horror... apply. You like a good post-apocalypse? Apply. If you're ready to see Paxton regurgitate his role in Aliens, it may not be right for you. This is a serious movie. It's ultimately fun and thought provoking.

You can pick up The Colony hits theaters September 20th, and will make its way to Blu-ray October 15th available HERE for pre-order. 

Isn't it time to start planning your end of time, seed stash, water ration planning and infected quarantine room?

-Dr. TERROR


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