The Girl with all the Gifts

Enterainment, Movie review


A scientist and a teacher living in a dystopian future embark on a journey of survival with a special young girl named Melanie.

Yes, it is yet another Zombie movie, but a satisfyingly good one at that. The world is plunged into an Apocalypse by a highly infectious fungus that attaches itself to the brain of the host and makes it hungry which – well I guess you can imagine the rest.

Despite having seen the trailer in advance I was entirely unprepared for this wonderful movie adaptation brought to the big screen by Colm McCarthy. If that names sounds familiar that is because he has been involved in the with Dr. Who and Sherlock. He sets the movie without any exposition or narration which is not only a nice stray from what most movies do these days but also involves the audience in a much more intimate way. We slowly get to learn why a group for pre-teens is locked up in cells and gets strapped to a wheelchair to be taken to class every day and why the soldiers taking them there seem both frightened and appalled by their very existence.

As the movie progresses you get to experience the terrific on-screen chemistry of three well-known actors: Glenn Close, a scientist striving to save the human race, Paddy Considine, the military component of the team and Gemma Arterton, a civilian and very much the moral compass of the group. But the true star of the movie is the absolute wonderful Dominique Tipper. She delivers such a strong and inspiring performance that in the end you’re hoping that there will be a sequel. (I kinda always want a sequel to any movie I enjoyed…)

There are some downsides to this movie however. While they refrain from brutalising your heart-frequency with jump scares, the soundtrack could be just a tiny bit more subtle about what is going to happen in the next 10 seconds. Even though it was quite beautiful it was a little bit too on the nose.

Something else that has become a terrible trend in recent zombie movies is film makers deciding that they don’t want to call them “Zombies”. This movie is no different in that regard, calling the Hungries instead. Why? Whys is this still a thing?

Also why is zombies the go to item when you want to create world-ending scenarios? Why not global warming horror scenarios? Or a butched election? Or WWIII ending the world as we know it by nuking the hell out of it? Or killer clowns? At least those scenarios would be somewhat realistic.

I’d be lying if I said I love Zombie movies. The novelty and excitement about the genre has worn off like 4 years ago and any attempt since then has been received poorly by audiences. This one however was bomb. Not only in terms of zombie movies but also in terms of horror movies. Just close your eyes and try to remember the last horror movie that did not have some bullshit haunted house, witchcraft or demonic possession as their main plot and relied on jump scares to even be considered a “horror” movie? Human centipede, maybe?

Genre: Drama, Horror, Thriller
Writer: Mike Carey
Director: Colm McCarthy
Cast: Gemma Arterton, Dominique Tipper, Glenn Close, Paddy Considine

4 Stars

Sarah Rosenthal

Sarah Rosenthal

Layout Editor at Insider
I'm a Sagittarius, which probably tells you already everything you need to know about me...
Sarah Rosenthal

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