Thursday, March 20, 2014

Best Friends Forever (Horizon DVD) - The Kinder Gentler Post-Apocalypse

Here’s a new one… an endearing, loving post apocalypse movie. Well, not entirely, but at least there’s a sense of true hope, passion and real devotion to friendship. Best Friends Forever a road movie featuring two young women on their way cross country to Austin, Texas. The movie features more peril than promise for our protagonists, but somehow they seem to weather the odds of a post nuclear world only to discover they have their own relationship as their potentially most lethal adversary. Horizon Movies has put out a comic book based adventure tale that feels fresh and good humored with loveable characters that are worth following.


Harriet (writer/director Brea Grant) is a perpetually perky comic-book artist who has hit a dead-end in Los Angeles. She drags her party-girl BFF Reba (co-writer Vera Miao) along for a road trip to Austin, Texas. Just as they pull out of town, a series of atomic bombs explode across the U.S., and the duo's priorities have to shift from boys and beer to surviving the apocalypse.


It seems that we’ve hit on several feminist pieces of literature in the last week or so with The Punk Singer documentary, and now this feature. Best Friends Forever is a really hip story written to feel more real than some of the more fantastical P.A. films as of late. The emphasis is away from zombies on back to basic nuclear terror. I suppose the actuality of the looming resurgence of the Cold War with Crimea was predicted by our internal horror clocks again just as we’ve seen with other inspired and somewhat predictive fictional works. The focus should not be placed on the end of times, however because Vera Miao and Brea Grant are the attention getters. These two have written, directed (Grant) and starred in a film that finds the real enemy during the great end of times, humanity. While this is inevitably true of most P.A. movies, these two have forced the “enemy” into a more emotive form, one that is not true villain sometimes in the form of hitchhiking travelers or broken down motorists, other times, a more personal enemy. The internal struggle and focus on deceiving the self, takes this out of the ordinary end of times rhetoric and places it in a separate, more human tale. Horizon is marketing this as a “post-apocalyptic Thelma and Louise” which is absolutely true save that I would add, “young” to modify Thelma and Louise. This is not a mid-life crisis movie. This is a crisis of the heart. A younger person’s crisis.

I was not completely taken with the overall picture quality, but I realize that this production’s budget was on the slim side. It is watchable and the story more than makes up for some less than stellar visuals. Note: 16x9 1.78:1, Stereo audio. The disc contains a nice assortment of extras that provide breath and width to the overall feature with commentary provided by Brea Grant, Vera Miao and Michelle Lawler, Behind the scenes footage, Best Friends Forever Remix, Kickstarter Compilation Video, Art of Best Friends Forever (the cover art is particular fun) and trailer. If you enjoy Best Friends Forever as much as I have then this is a nice way to build up your fanaticism.

-Doc Terror

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