Thursday, 25 June 2015
The Lost Future (2010)
There's a TV show called The 100 where a bunch of people try to survive on a post-apocalyptic Earth - but one that has reverted to a lush green wilderness, rather than the blasted desert landscape popularised by the Mad Max films. It's a good show, and I'm pleased to hear it's been picked up for a third season, but it does suffer from the common TV trope that the survivors are rather too pretty - and very much too clean.
To be honest, I mention this mostly so I can recommend you all check out The 100. It's got genuinely strong and interesting female characters, and a willingness to do things a bit out of the ordinary. When faced with a choice between pragmatism and idealism, for instance, the heroes don't allows choose the latter. And when they do, it's not always the right call.
But I also brought this up because The Lost Future is also set in lush, green post-apocalypse, and it also features characters that are too pretty and too clean for the life they're in.
As we learn during the film, a strange, highly communicable disease - being breathed on an infected person is enough to catch it - broke out and all but destroyed civilisation. Those who suffer the illness become bestial, Orc-like creatures who relentlessly hunt and attack any uninfected humans they encounter.
Generations later, a small group of humans survives in an isolated valley. They have however hunted out the terrain around them, and when they venture further in search of food, they bring a tribe of the infected down upon them. Many of the humans make it into a cave and barricade the entrance, but some are trapped outside. And of course they are all - though they don't know it yet - now infected themselves.
Three of those trapped outside the cave go in search of help. They're a pretty archetypal group: the brash son of the chieftain, his beautiful girlfriend, and the weird dreamer who has never really fit in, who carries a torch for the aforementioned girlfriend. His infatuation is quite unsettling in the way it is depicted actually - there's a scene where he wakes up and watches the other two have sex. I think we are supposed to feel sorry for him, but I was mostly just thinking "Dude, roll over and face the other way. You're being creepy."
Anyway, the trio meet up with Sean Bean - who despite trying very, very hard, will not manage to get himself killed for once - and go in search of (a) help to drive off the infected, who continue to besiege the humans in the cave, and (b) a cure for the disease (which does exist, but of course is not easy to get).
Wikipedia tells me that some reviewers have criticised this film for having unfinished subplots, but I'm not sure that's fair. I mean sure, Creepy Dreamer doesn't end up with the hot girlfriend at the end of the movie, but frankly I think that's a heck of a lot healthier than the alternative. I do think there's a more than a whiff of 'leaving things open for a sequel' to proceedings, though.
I was tolerably entertained by The Lost Future. The made-for-TV budget occasionally shows through, and the script is sometimes a bit weak - we've discussed the creepiness already, and it's got a few 'dramatic' moments that don't really work as intended - but the cast are solid and if you watch it as the light entertainment it's intended to be, you probably won't hate it.
You'd be much better off watching The 100, though.