Cargo (2018)

Director: Ben Howling, Yolanda Ramke

Writer: Yolanda Ramka (Screenplay)

Starring: Martin Freeman, Anthony Hayes, Susie Porter, Caren Pistorius, Kris McQuade, Natasha Wanganeen

 

Plot: CARGO is a post apocalyptic thriller and an emotional story of a father trying to save his child at all costs.


Tagline – The future is fragile

Runtime: 1 Hour 45 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Compelling Zombie Film

 

Story: Cargo starts as we meet Andy (Freeman), his wife Kay (Porter) and baby daughter Josie who are travelling across Australia to a military base after a zombie outbreak has swept across the country. Using the river their guide, things take a turn for the worse, when Kay gets bitten leaving her just 48 hours to live. When she turns she bites Andy, leaving him with 48 hours to find someone to care for his daughter.

Along the way he meets Vic (Hayes) a man that is using bait to keep his land safe, with not everything being as it seems and it ends up with Andy having to join a fellow survivor Thoomi (Landers) for the right person to look after his daughter.

 

Thoughts on Cargo

 

Characters – Andy is the husband and father trying to find safety for his family, he fails in this attempt with his wife now dead and him infected. He must rush to find somebody in the outback to care for his baby before he turns too, he is a man pushed to limits never imaginable. Vic is a man that Andy meets, he seems like the best possible pick until Andy sees the darker side of his survival. Thoomi is a young girl from the outback that joins with Andy to find a new home for baby Josie.

PerformancesMartin Freeman is brilliant in this leading role, he carries the story with his characters pure desperation to save his daughter. New comer Simone Landers is great too showing as one from the natives in the tribal lands. If we are honest we don’t meet enough of the supporting characters to give a true rating on their performances.

StoryThe story is adapted from a short film of the same name, with the same idea. The simple idea is one man in a zombie outbreak must find someone to care for his baby daughter after he becomes infected, 48 hours is his time limit. When it first got announced this sounded like a breath of fresh area, it does deliver on this because we are happy to follow along on this journey. The only draw back is that we do get to see him have options which might not be the best pick for such a short time limit in search for help. In fairness this is a simple and easy to watch story, it will test the moral discussion about what to do, but isn’t filled with any scenes that feel out of place.

Horror/ThrillerAny film that is set in a zombie apocalypse is going to get the marks for the horror, the undead do have traits we know as well as a few original ideas behind them which adds to certain moments of horror.

SettingsThe film is set in the Australian outback which is something that makes this stand out for the zombie genre, we don’t have big cities, we have large open spaces, which low numbers of the infected.

Special EffectsWhen we look at effects we must be praising them because the practical ones used for the zombie effects and injury effects look spot on.


Scene of the Movie –
The final walk.

That Moment That Annoyed Me I would question how he ended up in Australia in the first place.

Final ThoughtsThis is another good spin on the zombie genre, we often have the desperate attempts to save babies or loved ones, but this time we know his fate and we are gripped waiting to see where it will end up going.

 

Overall: Gripping and Intense zombie film.

Rating

 

 

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War Machine (2017)

Director: David Michod

Writer: David Michod (Screenplay) Michael Hastings (Book)

Starring: Brad Pitt, Anthony Hayes, John Magaro, Anthony Michael Hall, Emory Cohen, Topher Grace, Ben Kingsley, Scoot McNairy

 

Plot: An absurdist war story for our times, writer-director David Michôd (Animal Kingdom) recreates a U.S. General’s roller-coaster rise and fall as part reality, part savage parody – raising the specter of just where the line between them lies today. His is an exploration of a born leader’s ultra-confident march right into the dark heart of folly. At the story’s core is Brad Pitt’s sly take on a successful, charismatic four-star general who leapt in like a rock star to command NATO forces in Afghanistan, only to be taken down by a journalist’s no-holds-barred exposé.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Good War Comedy

 

Story: War Machine starts as highly respected and inspiration General Glen McMahon (Pitt) getting recruited to Afghanistan to see how the war is going over there, Glen brings his trusted men Pete Duckman (Hayes), Cory Staggart (Magaro), Greg Pulver (Hall), Willy Dunne (Cohen), Matt Little (Grace) and Andy Moon (Cyler) to bring the base together fixing the divide and keep the American side of the war happy back home.

We watch how Gen McMahon looks to recruit enough soldiers to make his plan to stop the problems happening in Afghanistan by using the counter insurgence tactics which have famously never worked before. Glen leads his close-knit group around Europe to find the rest of soldiers required from the allies of the United States as he continues his idea of peaceful removal of insurgence instead of just killing them.

 

Thoughts on War Machine

 

Characters/PerformanceGeneral Glen McMahon is assigned to Afghanistan to finish the war against the insurgence, he is respected and gets results by doing things his way. He wants to change things and make it feel like a war over a holiday image he sees it looking like. Greg Pulver is the loyalist man to Glen, he has been by his side from the start and is a loose cannon at times. The rest of the characters do all include the type of figures you would expect all getting the screen time required for the characters importance.

Performance wise, Brad Pitt is fantastic in this leading role showing us he can do comedy through a straight-faced role. Outside of Pitt it would be fair to say everybody else does a good job through this film fitting the chemistry required for the role.

StoryThe story is part parody and part light-hearted humour of how the war in Afghanistan could look like, more politics than conflict. We do also get the reality of war thrown at us and this shows us just what the problem with the war in Afghanistan. The story does feel long in places as this is two hours long but it is worth it for the reality check it gives.

Comedy/War The comedy comes from the reality check of how naïve the war in Afghanistan was, it’s not a laugh a minute it is a laugh of that was stupid wasn’t it. The war side of the film comes from trying to solve the problem without conflict.

SettingsEach setting looks good for the film and shows us just how this was for the soldiers would have come off comfortable for the soldiers over the previous wars.

Final ThoughtsThis is a comedy that is worth watching, it does have good moments on reality but it also has the moments that show how pointless the battle came off as.

 

Overall: One to watch.

Rating