The Night Eats the World (Movie Review)

The Night Eats the World (Movie Review)
8 10

PLOT: After waking up in an apartment the night after a raging party, Sam comes face to face with his new reality: an army of zombies have invaded the streets of Paris and he is one of the lone survivors. Petrified with fear, he barricades himself inside the building to survive. He wonders how long can he last in silence and solitude, and the answer comes when he learns that he’s not all alone after all.

REVIEW: I'm just going to get this out of the way right here and now, I firmly believe THE NIGHT EATS THE WORLD is one of the best f*cking titles for a movie, horror or otherwise, that I've ever heard. Granted the film and its title are based on the novel by Pit Agarmen. But still, it's not often that I'm sold on a flick based solely on its title, but in the case of Dominique Rocher's new "inventive" zombie film, I was all in at the word go. Then I saw the film's trailer, which you can check out above, and I was left counting down the days until I could check out this festival darling for myself. And now that I've had the chance to spend a night locked in an apartment building with this film, what did I think? Let's find out!

Before we get into the review portion, let's do a quick rundown on the film's plot and an interesting bit of backstory behind the scenes. The film begins when an anonymous slacker (borderline hipster) comes over to his ex-girlfriend's apartment post-breakup looking to pick up some cassette tapes she accidentally took with her when she moved out. Picking up beloved items from an ex is already an awkward situation to find yourself in, but add in the fact that when the slacker-hipster arrives at his ex-girlfriend's abode for the tapes, he discovers she's throwing a full-scale party. Great. My social anxieties are already piqued, how about you? 

Our hero slacker-dude quickly finds a quiet corner of the apartment to wait it out as his ex-girlfriend parties, mingles and eventually gets around to him. But here is the kicker, once inside the quiet office, the guy falls asleep (fair enough as he just got elbowed in the nose by a random drunkard moments previous) and when he wakes up all is quiet and calm outside the office door. He groggily opens the door and discovers the apartment in blood-covered shambles. Everyone is gone, leaving only their blood and bile behind as party-favors. What the hell happened last night? A goddamn zombie apocalypse is what happened. Welcome to the worst hangover ever.

From there the film plays out as 99% of our hero slacker alone in the apartment building hiding from the horde of zombies outside. Stop me if you've heard this one. But one thing that (behind the scenes) makes this an interesting and "inventive" zombie film is that the movie was shot in both English and French at the same time - basically one take English, another take French, then moving on. This trick of borderline gimmickry doesn't matter one iota to the general movie-going public as they will never even know this is the case. But all of that said, does the movie hold up as an interesting "one guy in one location holds off hordes of zombies" movie? Like gangbusters

I'm not usually a fan of zombie movies these days as I've seen WAAAY too many by his point in my horror history, but I dug the absolute hell out of THE NIGHT EATS THE WORLD. Like writer-director Jeremy Gardner's knockout feature debut THE BATTERY, this zombie movie is much more concerned with how boring the zombie apocalypse is then with action and chainsaws - and I love this approach. THE BATTERY is one of my favorite zombie movies of the past decade and now THE NIGHT EATS THE WORLD is right up there too. 

And this is 99% due to lead actor Anders Danielsen Lie's screen presence. As we all know painfully well by this point, a low-budget one location horror movie starring - for the most part - one actor is a damn-near impossible film to sit through if the lead doesn't COMMAND your attention. Thank all of the Gods that Lie is one of those actors. Not only can the man hold the screen with the best of them, he's also a musical prodigy of sorts, kills it on the drums, and makes music where he can. You could basically think of his character like a musically inclined version of a grown-up Kevin from Home Alone and that would be a spot on comparison. The man makes elaborate Rube Goldberg-style contraptions, allowing him to be a one-man band. It's as cool, if not cooler than it sounds.

In the end, let me put it like this: last night when I sat down to watch my screener copy of this flick with my girlfriend, I discovered my screencasting was on the fritz. So she and I had to watch the film on my phone on the couch. The fact that we didn't give up after ten minutes - and that we both equally dug the f*ck out of the film - should tell you all you need to know. If you hate the hell out of slow films like THE BATTERY, which linger on small moments post-apocalypse, go ahead and skip THE NIGHT EATS THE WORLD as you will surely be bored to tears. But for all of you other dudes and dudettes out there like me that can stomach long takes and little-to-no dialogue for significant spans of time, give this new zombie movie a look-see. It just might be a new classic. 

Extra Tidbit: THE NIGHT EATS THE WORLD will be hitting theaters and VOD via Blue Fox Entertainment July 13th.
Source: AITH



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