Writer: Mike Carey (Screenplay) Mike Carey (Novel)
Starring: Gemma Arterton, Glenn Close, Dominique Tipper, Sennia Nauna, Paddy Considine, Anamaria Marinca
Plot: A scientist and a teacher living in a dystopian future embark on a journey of survival with a special young girl named Melanie.
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: The Last of Us Film?
Story: The Girl with All the Gifts starts in a military compound where children are bound to wheelchairs as they are forced to remember numerical sequences, the smartest of all the children is Melanie (Nanua) who in her classes taught by Helen Justineau (Arterton) is always looking for stories of the outside world.
In this world, there is a secret going on with the children who are all flesh hungry when the adults are not wearing protective cream. Once we exit the military compound we learn that there is a zombie apocalypse outside the walls where the children are offering a potential vaccine for humanity but when the walls are breached Helen, Dr Caldwell (Close), Melanie and Sgt Parks (Considine) escape the chaos. The story then follows how the group of survivors must search for somewhere safe before their supplies run out.
Thoughts on The Girl with All the Gifts
Story – When you look at this story you can see the weak point in this film, that is slightly harsh to say but when you follow the story it does feel like it has followed the ABC of zombie survivor film. we do have a couple of twists in the story with the new look of the infected evolved children but otherwise this does have a striking similarity to the Last of Us video game.
Horror/Thriller – When you look at the horror side of the story you might find yourself slightly short of ever being scared in this film which isn’t a bad thing because you are kept on the edge of your seat waiting to see where the story will go.
Characters/Performance – Our main four characters are like what we have seen before, we have the scientist desperately looking for a cure to complete all the sacrifice they have made, the soldier who doesn’t like the idea having the young girl with them, the sympathetic woman that wants the children to be treated like children even if this is slightly naïve about it. It is the inclusion of the young girl that is an evolved infected which feels fresh because while she is immune she is also infected which is new to the genre.
Looking at the performances now we have great performances from Arterton, Considine and Close for their character but it is new comer Nanua who shines as she shows she can keep you with the better-known cast throughout the film.
Settings – When you are looking for beautiful use of setting this could well be one of the best visual representations of the zombie apocalypse genre you will see.
Special Effects – The special effects all look fantastic be it with the creation of the zombies known as ‘Hungries’ or the vast post-apocalyptic world that is created.
Final Thoughts – This is an enjoyable zombie film that does have elements that feel fresh but does have moments you have seen before.
Overall: Good addition to the zombie sub genre.