In a dystopian near future, humanity has been ravaged by a mysterious fungal disease. The afflicted are robbed of all free will and turned into flesh-eating 'hungries'. Humankind's only hope is a small group of hybrid children who crave human flesh but retain the ability to think and feel. The children go to school at an army base in rural Britain, where they're subjected to cruel experiments by Dr. Caroline Caldwell (Glenn Close). School teacher Helen Justineau (Gemma Arterton) grows particularly close to an exceptional girl named Melanie (Sennia Nanua), thus forming a special bond. But when the base is invaded, the trio escape with the assistance of Sgt. Eddie Parks (Paddy Considine) and embark on a perilous journey of survival, during which Melanie must come to terms with who she is.
In the book, Helen Justineau is described as a dark-skinned black woman in her 40's. Miss Justineau's dark skin is also a draw for Melanie, as the character states more than once in the book. Melanie also considers her teacher the most beautiful woman in the world. An excerpt from the book says; 'Although Miss Justineau's face stands out anyway because it's such a wonderful, wonderful colour. It's dark brown, like the wood of the trees in Melanie's rainforest picture whose seeds only grow out of the ashes of a bushfire, or like the coffee that Miss Justineau pours out of her flask into her cup at break time. Except it's darker and richer than either of those things, with lots of other colours mixed in, so there isn't anything you can really compare it to'. A short story written by Melanie in class describes Miss Justineau's general appearance: "Once upon a time there was a very beautiful woman. The most beautiful and kind and clever and amazing woman in all the world. She was tall and not bent over, with skin so dark she was like her own shadow, and long black hair that curled around so much it made you dizzy to look at her". Gemma Arterton, who is white, was cast for the role. She was in her late 20's when the film was shot. See more »
Whilst the movie was filmed in 2015 the panoramic shot of central London containing the 'Gherkin' also shows the old building at 20 Fenchurch Street, which was demolished in 2008, its replacement, the 'Walkie Talkie' was completed in 2014. See more »
Hope is the good thing that makes you be able to stand all the bad things.
But there isn't anything bad here. Is there?
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Okay, this is probably going to be one of those 'I just saw the movie recently so my opinion is still ridiculously over-inflated' sort of write-ups, so please bear that in mind.
Several years ago, I quit playing videogames but one of the last games that I played was The Last of Us which was an especially impressive post-apocalyptic zombie survival title. As far as gameplay went, it was actually repetitive and boring, but what was great about this particular game, was the heart-warming story and the wonderfully rich environment it created. Most people who played this game all came out of it with the same conclusion, "This would make a killer movie." This brought up all of the implications that its film adaptation would certainly end up sucking due to the infamous 'Game to Film' adaptation curse. If you are not familiar, this is the belief, argued by some, that no videogame has been successfully adapted to the screen and resulted in a great film, or at least a commonly acknowledged great film. Ever. Though this film will technically not count, The Girl with All the Gifts borrows a lot of stylistic elements from that game and owes it a great debt but, in the end, it is its own film and I must say, an exceptional one.
I am not going to go into any detail about this one yet because I know a lot of you will not have seen it. I went into it blind and I think that doing likewise will add to the experience for everyone. I will say it has some wonderful performances and looks every bit as beautiful as the game I mentioned above. This is top shelf storytelling with painfully gorgeous climax and while watching The Girl with All the Gifts, I was struggling to find anything to compare it to. It is certainly my favorite zombie film made this year, even surpassing the way above averageTrain to Busan . I would have to go back to 28 Days Later to find anything to rival it but I think I might like this even more than that game changer. So then what? Romero's original films? It seems a little unfair to compare it to the genesis of the genre but that is where I'd have to look. Is this the best zombie movie I've ever seen then? I dunno. It is definitely the coolest.
In my opinion, if you want zombies done right, you go to the English apparently.
28 Days Later/Shaun of the Dead/ The Girl with All the Gifts
they are positively shaming the rest of us
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