Director – Joshua Land (Ape Canyon, The American Dream)
Starring – Mitch Holson (V/H/S/ 2, Wonder Woman 1984), Anna Fagan (Ape Canyon, The Visitation), Shannon Lanier (The Dark Knight Rises, Signals 2)
Release Date – 2016
Rating – 3.5/5
I have a soft spot for post-apocalyptic movies. Not every filmmaker can pull off a Mad Max inspired feature but there has been some very clever no-budget post-apocalyptic films to be released over the years. A few of those has found a home with Wild Eye.
A few weeks ago Wild Eye sent me the 2016 post-apocalyptic drama 2020: Fallen Earth which was originally titled Lotus Eyes. I can see why the title was changed but I do find it a little funny that a 2016 film was retitled 2020: Fallen Earth. Regardless, I want to thank Wild Eye for sending this one over. I absolutely loved it.
**Spoiler Alert** The film follows teenager Simon (Holson) who has decided to leave the care of his mother to live with his uncle on a farm. The economy has tanked due to an oil crisis leaving many in poverty and barely able to eat. The journey to his uncle’s starts out innocently enough and soon he befriends two others looking for a better opportunity. However, inner turmoil’s and unable to trust newcomers forcing them to separate until he reaches his uncles. He soon learns that the grass is not always greener on the other side when he learns that his uncle only keeps able bodied workers on the farm and those that are sick or ill are forced out to starve. **Spoiler Alert**
When I tossed this one in I assumed it was a horror tale but I was wrong. However, I was not disappointed. In fact, I found myself thinking about this long after it was over. I absolutely loved it and recommended it to several genre fans after I watched it. Wild Eye has released several of my favorite movies on DVD over the years and this releases adds another to the list.
The acting in this one is great. The characters are not that well written and can easily blend into the backdrop but the cast does a phenomenal job in their performances. The cast is extremely young and inexperienced but they show so much promise in front of the camera. It’s been a few years and the cast has appeared in a few more films but nothing really genre specific which is a bit disappointing.
The story for this one is not a horror tale. In fact, it’s not really suspenseful either. The film is a drama set against a decaying civilization with the characters choosing one of two options. They can either help one another or they can look out for themselves. The movie does a fantastic job showing how easy it is to become selfish in difficult times but it also shows how someone can help others without putting people at risk. Having these types of characters clash works in this post-apocalyptic setting. With that being said, there is some pretty dry scenes that really pushes the viewer’s patience. These scenes are few and far in between but they are there and it breaks the pacing up.
Finally, the film is not a bloody one. In fact, it’s not really that gruesome at all. There is some scenes with a few dead bodies but they do not show blood or gore. Remember, this is a drama and not an extreme horror flick. Overall, 2020: Fallen Earth is not what I was expecting but I fucking loved it. If you are looking for a Mad Max style film you will be very disappointed but if you are a fan of the CBS show Jericho then you will really enjoy this one. I highly recommend it.