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Review | The Girl With All the Gifts – Quirky zombie movie hits Netflix

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Good idea, development not so much

At CinePOP, we love horror. And from this passion the site was born. No wonder you like the genre so strongly, dear readers. Every time we release news or a trailer for a new horror production, it automatically becomes a big hit. Even when it comes to small and unknown works. That’s exactly what happened with this The Girl With All the Gifts – original title of Melanie: The Last Hope, already present in the current Netflix collection, even though it was a 2016 production (without having been screened before in our cinemas).

The Girl With All the Gifts (as it’s now called on Netflix) has a very creative idea, which subverts what’s expected of the zombie movie subgenre. Very popular these days, the undead are the sensational monsters of the moment. Thus, some repetition in the formula of the productions that print the creatures is expected.

The film focuses on the offspring of mothers infected with the epidemic, who are born carrying the virus in their bodies, even though most of the time they behave like normal humans. In fact, the first few minutes of the film confuse us as to what is really going on. All we see are children treated extremely abusively and appallingly by the military. Soon after, we understand exactly where we are and place ourselves in this new reality.

Melanie – The Last Hope is based on the book Mike Carey, and the film is adapted by the author himself. The staging is by the British Colm McCarthy (from the Black Museum episode, from the Black Mirror series). In the English production, we experience a reality in which children are treated like dangerous animals, locked in their rooms and tied to their heads when they have to interact with other people, like teachers, inside the facilities. of the Army.

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Gradually we receive new information and realize that this world has been devastated by the deadly zombie outbreak. Outside the installation, a devastated country, full of undead ready to devour us.

In the casting, the highlights are the presence of the veteran Glenn Close, in the shoes of a scientist in search of a cure, Paddy Considine (King Viserys Targaryen from the tube The House of the Dragon) as a severe leader of the soldiers and the graceful Gemma Arterton as a charity guardian, the only one who treats children like human beings and not like killing machines. The protagonist, however, is little Sennia Nanua, who saw the main character Melanie. Talented and possessing great charisma, the young girl had a real chance of exploding her career with the film – the problem is that the work did not succeed and her participation will be hidden for those who venture to discover and explore feature film. A feather.

The artifice used by the work is to show such children carrying the zombie gene losing control as soon as they smell human flesh or any other living being. When such a scent strikes them, they become creatures without any conscience and possessors of an uncontrollable cannibalistic appetite, just like their brain-eating counterparts.

As said, the idea for Melanie – The Last Hope is laudable and aims to inject some freshness into a much-visited subgenre. The problem is that once the premise is in place, the development of the feature takes it back to exactly the commonplace of any other film in the genre, in which survivors must weave their way through what’s left of buildings and structures in order to escape. escape from a veritable horde. .. who plans to devour them. This platitude is the ultimate sign that a good idea has completely gone off the rails. A very common fact when it comes to film production without firmness.

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