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It's hard for me to precisely categorize this movie. Drama? Sure.
Thriller? For sure. Horror? Mmm, I don't think so. It's funny, because
it's hard not to label the movie horror, seeing as how it deals with a
grotesque infection, that spreads worldwide terror and brings
civilization to its knees. However, the infected aren't the antagonists
here. Once you've been infected, you're basically already dead.
Ultimately I thoroughly enjoyed the movie. After reading other comments here, it seems the general consensus is that the pace is too sluggish. I'd have to agree that it was a long 90 minutes, but as someone who is prone to falling asleep during movies, especially after an 8 hour shift, my interest was effortlessly sustained throughout the movie.
The production values here are top notch. I was never bothered by bad acting (or at least too bad). The cast fit my tastes, maybe only falling short with Piper Perabo, but that would only be nit-picking. The photography wasn't jaw-dropping, or even slightly innovative, but it was still more than adequate.
What actually impressed me most was the writing. There are some real gems in there, but mentioning them would be spoiling some great scenes. I seemed to sense some anti-religious or religious undertones, however I honestly can't decide which. I suppose that's what I liked so much about it, the morality was left quite vague.
Anyway, a solid effort. It's possibly lacking some more gore, and action, but that also could have just made it tasteless. I would recommend this to anyone who's a fan of biological horror, but I'd say ultimately you should see it for the story, and not the action.
Second this is NOT a zombie film. So don't be fooled by the idiotic
marketing of this fine little gem. What this is, is a deliberately
paced drama about a group of survivors in a world plagued with a virus
that's pretty much killed everyone and the hard decisions they have to
make on their way. It could be a companion piece to The Road almost, a
sort of prequel set a few years before.
While it is "slow" it only clocks in about 84 minutes which is far too short in my opinion and I wanted more really. Something tells me that the film was originally much longer but cut down by the producers to please the teens who all seem to hate it anyway.
Good film, crap marketing.
Haven't been to many movies this summer, however, I caught Carriers this afternoon, playing to a near empty theater, and was very glad I saw it. The film deserves an audience. The themes - an end of the world plague that leaves 4 young survivors traveling the empty backroads of the US - may not be exactly be new, but it's done with exceptional style that elevates the film beyond standard issue horror. Eschewing gratuitous effects or overblown shock value, Carriers tells its story and builds strong suspense with fine pacing and some terrific ensemble acting. There's no big budget here, but the filmmakers have done wonders in creating a post-plague world eradicated of all but a few remaining inhabitants; those remaining cling to one another while fearing abandonment should they become infected. Human bonds are even more tenuous than life itself. The filmmakers explore fear here in a compelling, genuinely human - at times, even poetic - manner. Hope people see this.
I just left the screening of "Carriers". It was the opening Movie on
this years Fantasy Film Fest. At least here in Munich. Well, my first
reaction to this film was something like "Wow... this where long 90
Minutes". Most of the other crowd thought the same and their comments
where quite similar to mine. Meaning: Good, but a bit slow.
This Movie needs a little tightening to speed it up a little bit. It does a lot of things right! The characters are worked out properly, the camera-work is top notch and the acting is very good. But sometimes there are scenes, that last too long. You know where the Directors want to go, you know how the scene will play out in the end, but it still goes on and on and on... So again: a little trimming would do the film good!
Well, and then there is this whole "Wrong Marketing"-Thing. At least here in Germany they try to sell this movie as a Horror-Movie. That's just wrong. Sure, there are the classic Horror-Elements, but overall "Carriers" is a strong, heavy Drama. There is virtually NO Action and even less gore in it. Instead there are long dialogs, dramatic events and more dialogs. That's fine with me, but it makes the movie hard to find it's audience. The GoreHounds will be disappointed by the lack of blood and guts and the Drama-Fans will be pushed away by the apocalyptic Elements...
So. Once again: "Carriers" has great potential but is a little bit to slow and to heavy on the drama to pass as a great movie.
We are warned that the rules are simple: 1. Avoid populated areas at
all costs. 2. If you come in contact with other people, assume they
have it. 3. The virus can survive on surfaces up to 24 hours so never
touch anything that is not disinfected. 4. The sick are already dead
and they cannot be saved. Easy enough, huh?
A deadly avian flu pandemic has swept across the country leaving a multitude of bodies in its wake. Two bothers, Danny and Brian, along with their female companions, Bobby and Kate, are making a beeline across country to the west coast where they hope to find solace from a world in rotting decay. It's along the way, however, that they are confronted with their worst horrors: making moral choices in a world void of conscience.
If loving your loved ones meant cracking the seal and becoming vulnerable to a diseased death, could you do it or would you opt for life and cast those you hold dear aside? At first take, the question seems like a no-brainer, however Carriers complicates the question in an uncomfortable manner. It's a game of fetch and flinch in a dog eat dog world.
An unnerving and powerful film, Carriers is not legendary, but it does leave a nasty bite... That is, if you begin to dwell too long on its suggestions. It is timely in its sting, what with H1N1 and bird flu and evils scarcely whispered behind closed doors away from the prying lick of government ears. My only major complaint is its rather relatively short length. I wish it would have "digressed" deeper.
But still very good. Chris Pine (you might have seen him in a little
movie called "Star Trek" by J.J. Abrams) & Piper Perabo star in a very
low key Horror movie, that doesn't even try to make you believe it has
any big action scenes in it. It's more about the characters and how
they react to certain situations.
Quite a few people were appalled by the fact, that there is not that much happening in the movie, but I liked it, because it was slow moving, because it took it's sweet time. Another criticism is that the movie is predictable. Again it's not so much about where it's going, but how it gets there (the "road" so to speak, even literally in this case).
Despite its premise, "Carriers" is not a zombie movie (there is a hint
that this may be a possible outcome of the unspecified disease, but
it's quickly dropped). It's not even a horror movie. There are a few
tense moments, but overall, the film is a tragedy.
Four young people are traveling together after most of humanity is wiped out after an unexplained outbreak of a fatal, and highly contagious disease: Danny (Lou Taylor Pucci), a would-be Yale student, if it weren't for the epidemic, his brother Brian (Chris Pine), who's a self-proclaimed jerk, Brian's girlfriend, Bobby (Piper Perabo), and another friend, Kate (Emily VanCamp). They're all trying to get to the beach where Danny and Brian vacationed together as kids. To do that, they're following three of Brian's rules: The infected are already dead, and they can't be helped. Always wear a mask around the infected. Wipe anything down that the infected have touched within the last 24 hours.
"Carriers" is interesting because it explores something that movies of this ilk leave as an afterthought: how would you function when society has completely vanished? No government, no jobs, no politics? The only rule here is to survive at any cost. It's an interesting question, and film-making brothers Alex and David Pastor pose a few interesting conclusions.
The acting is solid, although the characters are only as interesting as the actors who play them. Chris Pine is making a name for himself as the guy who's a complete dick on the surface, but with a heart underneath. Think the beginning of his performance in "Star Trek" taken to the next level. Lou Taylor Pucci, who burst onto the indie film circuit with his performance in "Thumbsucker" (unseen by me), is also good as the brother who is straddling the line between compassion and selfish survival. Piper Pearabo is good as Bobby, whose compassion for others can get her into trouble. Unfortunately, Emily VanCamp, who was terrific in "Black Irish," doesn't have much to do. Special note has to go to Christopher Meloni, who manages to tug the heart as the father of a sick little girl, and his daughter is adorable as well.
The problem with this film is I wanted more. I wanted to see more of the little things that people would do without any rules. The film is a very short 87 minutes, so it had some time to spare. This would allow for some character development, which would make this a lot more effective.
It's a movie to watch if it's on TV, or if you're interested in exploring a situation, not a zombie movie.
The key, unequivocal problem with the Pastor Brothers film 'Carriers'
is that it just doesn't go anywhere: it begins, eighty minutes go by,
and then the credits roll. The narrative just trudges along from start
to finish without further challenging the audience or without placing
further emphasis on the dramatic choices at hand. Which is
disappointing as this film had a lot of unearthed potential that would
have certainly set it apart from simply being 'just another
zombie/pandemic' film. Instead, it is unfortunately, just another viral
Brian (Chris Pine), his brother Danny (Lou Pucci) and their two female friends Bobby (Piper Perabo) and Kate (Emily VanCamp) are your four typical just-out-of-college kids who are on the road to nowhere, literally. After a viral outbreak incapacitates almost the entire population of the United States and potentially the world, they decide to hit the road and hopefully find somewhere to stay or somebody to engage with who is free of the virus.
'Carriers' would be more aptly placed in the drama genre than the horror or thriller section of the local video store as nothing as note actually takes place in regards to the latter genres. There are maybe two or three scenes ranging from two to three minutes in length which contain some suspenseful elements, however the rest of the film is rather conventional. Even regarding the lack of blood and on screen violence, after all, the central on screen element is the deteriorating relationships between the characters.
When the teens encounter Frank (Christopher Meloni) and his infected, young daughter Jodie (Kiernan Shipka) in the middle of a desolate stretch of road just waiting for somebody to "lend them some fuel," the first of a few moralistic situations are shoved towards the audience. Would you leave them? Would you help them? The crux of 'Carriers' is based around one simple principle; don't help anybody infected, not matter how young or how vulnerable they are and YOU will stay alive. And it's how the characters engage with these various situations which they encounter along their journey, and this manages to breathe a little life into this heavily deflated film.
Chris Pine, pre Star Trek, gives a brilliant performance as the brother who has had the emotional consciousness beaten out of him throughout the pandemic to the point the where the survival of himself and his younger brother is the only objective. While Lou Pucci, who portrays Brian's younger brother Danny, also pulls out an equally inspiring performance as the younger brother who is constantly fighting with his conscience with regards to the tough decisions that Brian has to make.
If Alex and David Pastor were given the opportunity to go back and shoot around thirty-to-forty minutes worth of extra footage, then 'Carriers' would have the potential to be a very good film. Instead, however, we are left with a film so short in length that once we have just connected and engaged with the characters and their desperate situations the credits begin to roll and the lights come up leaving you feeling incredibly empty inside and asking one brief question; "Is that it?"
Carriers, Wasn't sure about it, We got it in At work and I decided to
Rent it out and try it, Wow. I was Shocked. For a "No nothing" film, It
was actually very very good. Not what You'd except seeing as how it was
advertised as "Horror".
Believe you me, It was anything BUT scary. Sure they tried to pull it off with some "jump" scenes but nothing really horrible, Really this movie was So emotional, So powerful, About the power of friendship and Family. It made me tear up from time to time, you just felt so ...bad for them and there situation. Really I would check it out, It is worth the watch.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Two brothers and two girls are traveling across country trying to avoid
those who are infected with a horrible disease. The disease has killed
most of the population. They are doing okay until they run across a
father and his infected daughter, who are looking to get to a
government clinic with a serum that promises a cure. The two groups are
forced through circumstances to hook up and the journey changes their
outlooks on the situation. It also marks the beginning of events moving
out of everyone's control (or at least the realization that things are
not in their control).
Small scale film is a nice compliment to films like 28 Days Later or even the recent zombie cycle, though there are no walking dead or crazed cannibals here. It's a dark horror tale more about the horrors of life then of monsters and madmen. How would we react to a situation like this? This might be an indication of what we might do. I like that the film doesn't full tell us everything that happened before. Things are not overly explained. We're given enough to work things out for ourselves and its more frightening that way. Its not a perfect film, but it is compelling and tense. It's a good enough film to make me wonder why this film hasn't gotten a big release. Perhaps the lack of monsters and its reasonably realistic (and bleak) nature have made it a film the studio doesn't know how to market. I really like this film, it's a nice find. Recommended.
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