Written by Andrew Robertson and Lilly Kanso
Directed by Andrew Robertson
Staring Chris Kies, Sebastian Beacon, Carter Roy and Eva Grace Kellner
Post-apocalyptic films and TV shows are still fashionable, and the trend doesn’t seem to be slowing down. Wether it’s a global economic collapse, extreme climate change, nuclear war or even a zombie outbreak, this sub-genre of films attracts audience members in droves to get a glimpse of what our desolate world might look like. From first time feature director Andrew Robertson, REFUGE explores the human condition in a world where everything has fallen apart in a very depressing way.
A world ravaged by a deadly virus, most of the population has been killed, leaving those still alive to fight for their own survival. We meet a family who has taken shelter in an abandoned home, going about their daily tasks of rummaging though other homes looking for food and supplies, and of course stumbling over a few dead bodies. But when a runaway from a group of violent marauders asks them for help, their home suddenly become unsafe and they have to leave to find a new camp to set up.
Not much is said about exactly what the cause of events were, or the magnitude of what happened, but throughout the film we begin to pick up small pieces here and there, mostly left to our imagination and this works incredibly well. We aren’t inundated with facts about the world they live in, we are instead given the opportunity to focus on the characters of the family and their relationships with each other, and their environment.
Beautifully shot with a cold and washed out palette and a soundtrack by the electronic-ambient band Carbon-Based Lifeforms (you can stream the album on YouTube) REFUGE is a bleak and unrelenting portrait of a ruined earth ravaged by the remnants of humanity. It’s a slow moving thriller that demands your attention, but if you are a fan of THE ROAD of the best parts of The Walking Dead then this chilling film shouldn’t be missed.