Remains Movie Review
Directed by Colin Theys
Written by Steve Niles and John Doolan
2011, 88 minutes, Rated 18 (UK)
DVD released on 30th July 2012
Miko Hughes as Jensen
Grant Bowler as Tom
Evalena Marie as Tori
Anthony Marks as Victor
Tawny Cypress as Cindy
Lance Reddick as Ramsey
Thanks to the success of The Walking Dead zombies seem to be everywhere these days. For fans of the genre this abundance of on-screen flesh eaters is undoubtedly a good thing, but for all those looking for a something with a bit more bite, the influx of films tends to blur into one. The made-for-TV effort Remains does a lot with very little while taking some daring leaps in trying to keep this tried and tested movie monster alive... or should we say, dead.
Based on Steven Niles' (30 Days of Night author) five issue comic series of the same name, Remains is a slick horror that uses an interesting motif to kick things into gear. While our boozy anti-heroes Tom and Tori are slacking off at their rundown casino day jobs, the rest of the world is watching history in motion. In a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it piece of exposition we discover that every TV channel is covering the detonation of the ‘Peace Bomb’, a device that aims to destroy the world’s nuclear devices. All eyes are on the initiative, except for Tom and Tori who’re having drug-fueled fun in the bunker-like casino storeroom. They emerge to find that the world they once knew has been transformed into a rabble of white-eyed snarling monsters. Joined by the vulnerable magician Jensen and the not-to-be-trusted Victor, this group of stragglers starts living life to the full in their new casino home, remaining surprisingly calm considering the circumstances. However, as with all zombie apocalypse movies, it’s not long before their safe haven is compromised. When a survivalist military group comes a’ knocking, the group’s safety is put at risk and as people’s true colours start to shine through an escape plan is needed.
With the look and feel of zombie video game cut scene, Remains manages to capture the tone it’s chasing for very little cash. Boasting some budget grizzly gore and modest action sequences, it’s only the questionable explosion effects that’ll remind you you’re watching something destined for the small screen. However it’s the movie’s storyline that raises the most provoking questions. With a plot device reminiscent of a Stephen King short story, having the ‘Peace Bomb’ turn people into zombies feels a little predictable. That said these are no normal undead guys. Niles and director Colin Theys give audiences something they've never seen before: sleeping zombies. They’re also a more vicious, brainier breed, often eating their own kind and getting smarter with each passing day. Undoubtedly, Remains does a good job of creating the world and planting some interesting story seeds but it’s hard not think that part two is where the real fun can be found.
Video, Audio and Special Features:
Video, audio and special features will not be graded as this was a screener.