54 Days (2014)

54 Days (2014)

Starring: John Michael Burdon, Michael Drysdale, Dianna LaGrassa, Michela Carattini, Gregory J. Wilken

Plot: 5 people trapped in a 1960's nuclear shelter after a nuclear and biological attack in Australia and beyond. As food and water runs out they are forced to make an impossible decision - either one dies or they all die.

My Review and Thoughts:

Lord of the Flies meets A Bomb Shelter.

A bomb shelter. 5 people. A nuclear bomb. Lack of food and the emotional reality of human beings.

This is a prime example of why you should prep. This is a nice reality based science fiction thriller of the end times through nuclear war. Many main cities are destroyed and a biological Agent, Known simply as Agent Four is destroying life. These five friends are in an ultimate struggle and will to survive. The boiling tensions and attitudes lead to choices beyond humane understanding. Water is the ultimate necessity. As time ticks away and the will of survival sets in they slowly make a choice of drawing straws on who dies first.

Written and directed in a solid fashion that creates its own atmosphere on the idea of a future event, a nuclear shelter in a post-apocalyptic reality. This goes up there with a lot of other films in this style and fashion but I think this one deals with more of the emotional reality of human characters other than the dread that is taking place. I think the director Tim Lea is able to capture the human persona, logical, believable and in understandable ways. I think that's the plus to the film is the overall characterization as you get to know these individuals in a horrible, uncontrollable, biological nuclear reality as they are trapped in a bomb shelter that clearly has been neglected. Only set up for, four individuals, two adults and two children.

This is actually based on a short film with the same plot, the same cast and the same crew and written and directed by the same man Tim Lea that came out 2013 in Sydney Australia. This is a short film expanded into a full version of the film, basically expanding on the storyline. The short version was created for a 28 day project on a science fiction competition known as "WD Project Sci Fi". The basic point was you had to make a movie, write, film and produce a 10 minute short within 28 days. You were only given a basic theme. Tim and his team was given the concept of post-apocalyptic. The movie short went onto the finals and was nominated for best script and best editing awards. Now this short film ended up creating a lot of buzz and the production team along with everyone else decided to make a feature length film of 54 Days.   This is another one of those independent films that went the modern way of a crowdfunding campaign which launched in February 2014 and ended up raising over the $54,000 budget for the movie. I guess you could say the rest is history.

This is an interesting film. It ends up creating an atmosphere that is rational and yet so dark, deep and evidently it traces and explores the moral and human dilemmas that humanity is the ultimate nuclear and biological destructive force when stuck in a situation and the will or greed to survive sets in.

Although the film is unoriginal because it's been done in many other instances such as films and shorts and television, this one still sticks out as something that leaves a lasting impression on the viewer. It explores the dark recesses and the primal insanity of the human being.

This is a conversational piece. It's a film that a group of individuals could debate or end up frustrated in the concept of the idea of right and wrong and how the moral fiber of the human being really means nothing in the moments of personal survival. How far will you go to live, to function, and to move forward? The choice ends up being by any means.

This being Tim Lea's first feature length film, I feel he aced it. A good first film by a director that has a sense of a vision that is able to stick with you long after it's over.

The chemistry between all the performers is a memorable reality that bleeds simplicity yet high class acting. I enjoyed the reality of the film and what it showcased in the human condition of man's primal and ultimate function called survival at any means.