Rob Grant (director)
29 June 2020 (released)
30 June 2020
The genre classics still have a massive influence on today’s output and what is really exciting is the way that they are being re-interpreted or just strands taken with filmmakers and writers then letting their imaginations fly. Which is what writers Chuck McCue and Jules Vincent have done with Alive.
Alive a slowburn horror that has a man (Thomas Cocquerel) and a woman (Camille Stopps) strapped to trollies covered in bloody garments and tubes seemingly after having been in an accident. They are treated/tortured by a grotty looking doctor (Angus Macfadyen) (there are no names) who has an English accent and you just know this is going to mean trouble. And trouble they are in as the man to start with cannot speak and the woman pleading for something as apart from fleeting memories, they have nothing to work with.
Their surroundings are decrepit, filthy and abandoned as we find out from the opening sequence when the man is dragging himself down a corridor in an attempt to escape. It’s a grim location and considering their conditions it’s a miracle that they haven’t fallen dead to infection, let alone their injuries.
It’s ugly stuff at times as they are fed some repulsive paste, forced in one case, as they show some resistance. Then bizarrely the doctor tries to get them to do some physio though pushing the man too far whatever trust he hoped to nurture goes out of the window though the woman does try to get his confidence in the early stages.
The man eventually gets his voice back leading to testosterone fuelled thoughts and talk of escape, which they do, a couple of times. But eventually they get it right and chased by someone who is quite clearly a madman and his dog. Playing hide and seek with their pursuers, the pair blunder into rooms and fridges in the building discovering ample evidence that what may have been once a hospital is now a charnel house.
Other than a few pacing problems mid-way through, Rob Grant has grafted a good solid horror film. It’s virtually all enclosed so there’s a fair amount of work for the three leads to do as they are the only ones we see for most of the film. And they are very good with some quite intense dialogue sequences.
The slight annoyance is the English accented Dr character. I have never personally been very keen on this type of chirpy bedside ‘come along it’s going to be just fine’ just before they do something awful but I can’t take anything away that Scotsman Macfadyen who is very good in the role just about keeping it the right side of camp.
Alive is available on digital platforms iTunes, Amazon, Sky Store and Virgin now