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The movie was good, no doubt about it, in that it described pretty
realistically the issues facing people during a highly contagious
incurable and deadly pandemic. Actors played well, the soundtrack was
good and the script was decent. There were no zombies, no true violent
conflicts between "survivors", but the tension was high at a
That being said, I can't say I feel good after watching the film. It portrayed ugly "normal" people, the kind that you wouldn't give a damn about in real life, but that gain dimensionality during this biological threat. The movie lays it out slowly and clearly: people will stoop as low as they need to in order to survive, and accidents, stupidity and sheer ineptitude will join human nature in decimating people. I am not an optimist, and at a rational level I already know that, but it still pains me to see it happen before my eyes.
Bottom line: a decent and bleak end of days film, more of a psychological thriller than a horror. It reiterates the golden rule that women and children will get you killed every time in a crisis. Oh, and there is a pandemic virus in the movie, too :)
I might have passed on this movie if Stephen King had not written about
it in an article in Entertainment Weekly. He said while it wasn't
great, it was good, and I am in agreement with him. It's not terribly
original - I've seen this "plague/dying world" theme in plenty of other
movies and books - but it's overall competently executed, especially
when considering the filmmakers didn't have much of a budget. The
downbeat theme, the characters losing their humanity are all
The only thing that was seriously wrong was the opening minute, which was too upbeat and didn't explain why seemingly the only supplies the protagonists had were two surfboards. Other than that, though, I found the movie worked. King was right - this deserved more than the tiny theatrical release it got.
The post-apocalyptic atmosphere around "Carriers" makes us remind The
Walking Dead, even though its focus is a little bit different in
relation to the series, once there isn't any zombie featured in.
Besides that, spectators have to take in account that plot is mainly
centered on the decisions in which characters have to make in face of
hard situations featured throughout the movie, what is a clear evidence
we are faced with a dramatic thriller and not necessarily a horror
movie. It's even unknown, for example, where the virus came from and
how outbreak really ends.
In fact, the movie's greatest aspect is that it makes us reflect, in a realistic way, on how it'd be if people actually had to live in a post- apocalyptic world, without government, social organization or even food. And what about familiar and sentimental ties? Luckily, author of the film leaves out any fictional, boring and overused Zombie theme. Besides that, Road movies are always welcome and this is surely one of best out of 'em.
I just caught this on Channel 4 knowing absolutely nothing about it .
This shouldn't be too surprising because CARRIERS is a film that must
have been a nightmare to market and a big non prize to anyone who can
work out why so many people on this page feel bitterly disappointed by
it . Let's discuss the premise " A virus spreads through out the world
and a handful of survivors try to find sanctuary only to discover the
virus isn't the only thing to threaten them " Hey sounds a bit like a
certain British horror film from about ten years ago directed by Danny
Boyle . You can understand that it boils down to it a lot of people are
expecting a horror movie which CARRIERS certainly isn't
What we do get is a slow burning cerebral drama analyzing how far people will go to survive . It's a fact of life that he who saves themselves saves the entire human race and that human society is anti-Darwinian in nature . Strip away the veneer of civilization and unfortunately it's survival of the fittest which might seem the antithesis of morality but morality is entirely subjective . What might seem decent in one set of circumstances will be painfully impractical in another set of circumstances and the film explores these issues as best it can . Perhaps if some of the characters had been a little bit more practical then the film might have ended on a somewhat happier note
As it stands this is an American film that has the classic British apocalyptic fiction of the 1950s about and I was often reminded of the original BBC drama from the 1970s SURVIVORS . Not a lot happens incident wise , those hoping for a horror film will be disappointed , those hoping for zombie horror will be doubly disappointed , those scared and depressed by post apocalypse fiction ( Hello Mr Moo ) will be too depressed to enjoy it but those interested in this genre will greatly respect CARRIERS for being an American movie that examines kinship and friendship in the face of adversity without resorting to hyperactive living dead and biker gangs
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Carriers is set in the US where a wipe-spread outbreak of a disease has
decimated the population, any contact with an infected person will
result in the disease being spread & it is 100% fatal as there is no
known cure. Brother's Brian (Chris Pine) & Danny Green (Lou Taylor
Pucci) together with Brian's girlfriend Bobby (Piper Perabo) & Danny's
random friend Kate (Emily VanCamp) are driving a stolen Mercedes to try
& get to the isolated beach house where Brian & Danny grew up & have so
many fond memories of, there they hope to be safe from the disease,
those infected by it & live out what time they have left together.
However the four teens have to travel a long way & face many dangers
including armed soldiers, the infected, low supplies, running out of
gas & as the strain begins to show arguments break out & tensions rise.
They all agree to follow some simple rules in order not to become
infected but it's not long before the rules are broken & the disease
Written & directed by Spanish brother's David & Àlex Pastor this wasn't anywhere near as bad as I was expecting, it's an odd mix of horror, thriller, drama & road film that does have some good moments & isn't as clichéd as it could have been. The script definitely tries to focus on the human drama, the relationship's & the tough moral decisions that the character's have to make. From having to leave an eight year old girl to die because she is infected to Brian having to leave Bobby alone on the side of the road when he finds out that she is infected to the soldiers who fight amongst themselves as they try to decide whether to keep Bobby & Kate hostage so they can rape them or the scene where Brian has to kill two normal uninfected women to steal the gas from their car after theirs runs out. Whe character's have a little bit more about them than one might expect & come across quite well so when one of these tough decisions needs to be made it has a certain impact, the majority of Carriers is set on the open road as the four teens make their way to the beach with the situations they find themselves in getting worse. At a mere 85 minutes long Carriers doesn't outstay it's welcome but at the same time not that much happens besides the moral dilemmas, the horror & zombie content is minimal with only two or three scenes showing the infected & there are no mass attacks or packs of infected running around like in 28 Days Later... (2002). While not amazing or particularly memorable the better than usual character's & human drama elevates Carriers slightly above average but not by much as it really could have used a little bit more gore & horror.
There's a homage to Dawn of the Dead (1978) here as the teens find an abandoned five star hotel & run riot, they play golf on the luxury course but instead of trying to put the balls they try to smash as many of the hotel windows with them as possible! Brian also goes mad on a golf buggy which looks like fun & I am sure many would like to try it for real, I know I would. There's not much gore here, maybe a few gunshot wounds & a few of the infected who look like rotting zombies & a Dog is seen eating a dead persons guts. It's never explained why Brian & Danny feel they will be safe at the beach or why they decided to go there but the beach is as good a place as any in the situation they find themselves in I suppose. There's absolutely no explanation to what the disease is or what caused it or how these four teens have survived, the whole background to the main plot is very ambiguous & vague.
Available in the US with a PG rating while Europe got a slightly stronger version with more bad language & a bit of extra blood splatter but nothing major. Filmed in Albuquerque in New Mexico & Texas the IMDb says that it was shot back in 2006 but not released until 2009. The acting is pretty good actually & helps give the film some impact.
Carriers is a film that I thought was going to be awful & while it's not exactly brilliant I thought it was watchable thanks to some human drama, some tough moral decisions that the script doesn't take the easy way out of & one or two decent moments of horror. Not great but not terrible either.
I seem to be finding a lot of movies about the darker side of life at
the moment, and this is no exception. Four young people are travelling
across America to get to a coastal resort. Unfortunately the rest of
the world is either dead or infected with a deadly virus. Sound
interesting? Well, I'll tell you what I think after a short summary
(summary haters please try to avoid infection while I write the next
There are four simple rules: 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? Well maybe, but brothers Danny and Brian Green and their companions, Bobby, Brian's girlfriend, and Kate seem to have problems sticking to the rules. They come across a man, Frank Holloway, and his daughter, Jodie, on the road and initially leave them, but then wreck their car and go back to steal theirs. Although the girl is infected they allow them to come along as far as a clinic Frank had heard about that might have a cure. Of the group, the one most against breaking the rules is Brian, but the others, particularly Bobby seem to persuade him otherwise. Of course things go wrong and over the course of their journey two of the group end up infected and are either forced to leave or end up dead. Which two survive? Well, I'd class that as a major spoiler, so I won't say.
This is more of a tense drama than anything else, and as such works quite well. There are a couple of problems with it, which I'll go into later, but as far as production goes, no problems in that department, but nothing new either. As far as performances go, Chris Pine as Brian and Lou Taylor Pucci as Danny were fine, as were Piper Perabo as Bobby and Emily VanCamp as Kate.
The main problem I have with this film is the character Brian is such an ass-hole that I found it very hard to sympathise with him. Also, although there were things that I liked, the typical horror movie stupidity still reigns. Investigating noises in the dark, stopping to help bad guys when you know they will try to kill you etc. But it's not all bad; there are points where the logical action was carried out, which I applaud. Over all, it's not great, but it is watchable, if you can get past the Brian character being a total ass-hole. (Only just) recommended.
My score: 5.8/10
Carriers follows a group of young survivors who make some tough choices
after an infection has spread worldwide bringing civilisation to its
There are a few harrowing and emotional parts in Carriers but it fails to connect with the viewer. Unusually pretty Piper Perabo and Chris Pine (of Star Trek fame) leads an excellent small group of unknown actors in a well directed virus survival film.
However, Carriers is simply an anomaly, there's no gloss, it has the spirit of big budget 'The Road'. The cinematography is great, the music and the script are fine but it feels too long and flat. It's missing that impending doom atmosphere considering the characters hopeless situation.
It is by no means a bad film, it explores morals and values, however, its just not very engaging or entertaining. I'm sure directors/writers Àlex Pastor and David Pastor will go on to do something really great, but this just isn't it.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Carriers: 6 out of 10: What amazes me about Carriers is how it has the
exact same plot as Zombieland. A story about two siblings traveling
across a devastated and depopulated United States to visit a theme park
in California that reminds them of childhood. The movies even share the
same fetish for a nerdy character that has come up with all the rules
to keep them alive.
While Zombieland was filmed in early 2009 and released later that year on 3000 plus screens; Carriers was filmed in 2006 and released on a hundred screens in 2009 to virtually no fanfare. Only actor's Chris Pine's recent starring role in the Star Trek movie caused it to be released theatrically at all.
The other main difference is while Zombieland on the surface may appear to be a horror-comedy along the lines of Shaun of the Dead it really is more of a straightforward comedy with gore and zombies. Carriers also certainly appears to be a horror film on the surface but it really isn't. This is large D drama that starts off serious and gets quite disheartening before the end credits role.
Carriers is a medical drama writ large mixed with a post-apocalyptic future. There are no zombies or even 28 Days Later pseudo zombies. This is not an exploitation film as there is no nudity or violence; there is also very little action. There is simply a small handful of sick people, a small handful of not yet sick people and a copious amount of dead people. It is more a sequel to a bird flu movie than a Dawn of the Dead film.
Carriers biggest problem is it simply is hard to root for any of the characters. Chris Pine and Lou Taylor Pucci play the siblings heading to their childhood vacation spot (of which we see strange seventies era super 8 nostalgia footage though judging by the age of the characters their childhood was in 1995). Pucci is the rules nerd while Pine is a super jerk (or as TV Tropes wisely points out a Psycho Party Member).
Then you have the ladies. Emily VanCamp plays what would seem to Pucci's girlfriend but she is frigid, preppy, and possibly a lesbian. At the very least the "I wouldn't kiss you if you were the last man on earth" rule seems to apply here. Piper Perabo as Pine's girlfriend is borderline likable but she is whiny and a liar and I really am grading on a curve here.
Only Christopher Meloni as a father with an already sick daughter seems to pull on the heart strings; but he isn't a member of the core group and they separate ways halfway through.
The acting is good across the board with Meloni and VanCamp the standouts. The film also seems much grounded in its reality and logic is safely tucked into bed every night. I simply wish the movie was about a different group of survivors.
I beg to differ from the general air in the comments here: the movie is
not slow at all. "Slow" is a movie that bores you. This one keeps you
at the edge of your seat. Not because the scenes are a packed with
special effects and extraordinary cuts and camera angles. Better yet --
the writing, the directing, and the acting are good; the story is well
told and does not hang on the bare thread of blown up bodies or
cannibalistic excesses (if you have seen the pathetic dog "Zombieland"
you would know what I mean).
I especially appreciated the original start of the movie. The first scenes show young people driving in a car and there is no hint that they are running away from a disease of Biblical proportions. Missing is the typical intro: "The world has been hit by a deadly virus..." etc. or some scenes of devastation to introduce us to the context of the story. Just the opposite - as the plot unfolds one is even shocked to realize that these people are desperate to escape with their lives...The joyfulness which emerges, from time to time in the protagonists' behavior is not out of place, it enhances the eerie atmosphere of a world at the edge of its existence.
The characters have to make decisions that are so well motivated by the good writing, acting, and directing, that one cannot but begin to think and question why people are doing what they are doing. What is the source in human nature the brings forward compassion or cruelty? Should we treat or abandon the sick and helpless? Do we have a moral obligation to care for the dying or to survive at any cost? The movie is a good depiction of the cold calculated view of life many take in these days we live in.
After all the so called "slow" pace is just appropriate, it sets the right mood. The makers of the movie succeed to connect with their audience on a deeper level than blowing up bodies and eating flesh. Thus the "slow" pace lets the viewer digest what is going on on the screen and lets him think about it. This is a film made by intelligent and sensitive people.
There exist no strongholds in this movie. The only thing you can do is
to take a deep breath and seek isolation but the virus is everywhere.
Four people are set up to take a journey to there's childhoods vacation
area but there voyage are more difficult then they ever could have
This is a movie without zombies and big fighting instead i's seek to comprehend with the psychologist effect of a society that have reached it's extinction. Even though it's not a great movie either in it's originality ore script it's a movie worth seeing.
It's strength lies in that there is no hope fore redemption,only emptiness and remorse and guilt. If you seek to see a movie with good ending and hope you have come to the wrong place.
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