Director: Stephanie Joalland
Screenplay: Stephanie Joalland
Starring: Dakota Blue Richards, Jack McMullen, Karl Davies
Producer: Sean McConville
Running Time: 83 min
BBFC Certificate: Unknown
Dakota Blue Richards plays Sarah, a young girl trying to survive in the aftermath of an alien invasion with her blind brother Tom (Jack McMullen). Into their lives comes Jude (Karl Davies) a man looking for sanctuary being chased by a group of pursuers who are after revenge and more.
This is the debut feature from Stephanie Joalland, with a background in screen writing this French director made this low budget UK sci-fi in just 3 weeks.
The alien spaceships look like giant malevolent wasp nests hanging in the sky. With very little exposition we are on familiar ground, this is definitely a sci-fi film. It has a strangely nostalgic feel at turns making me think of Day of the Triffids (blind brother), Mad Max (baddies get up) and The Road (bleak fighting for survival); although its most striking parallel is most definitely Straw Dogs.
There is a very English bleakness about the film’s atmosphere and the leads are quiet and non hysterical, stoical; just how you might expect most of the UK to act were we to get invaded by aliens. No one really knows what the aliens want but the survivors are just as much threatened by other humans as by the drone patrols that go out hunting them.
There is a tense, creeping horror when the residents of the house become under siege from the outsiders seeking revenge and resources; they seem woefully underprepared in the circumstances to really fend off attackers even with their extra man. They appear painfully naïve which only adds to your sense of dread about what might befall them.
It’s not quite the UK’s version of District 9 but this quiet film is a real treat, its references make you feel like you’ve seen it before but you haven’t; we need more sci-fi in the UK on the big screen and this is a good place to start. More of this please Stephanie.