Article updated: 2022.09.17
The Alone (2020) is a survival horror drama film. The movie was reviewed by Kadmon.
Product: Alone, movie (2020)
Original title: Alone / UK: Final Days / Canada: Pandemic
Other adaptations of the story: #Saraitda / #Alive, movie (2020)
Setting: contemporary fantasy Earth
Product type: Film, Genre: survival horror drama, Style: horror, survival horror, zombies, drama
Reviewer: Kadmon, Type: Male, 40s, Preferences: Immersive, logical story, consistent setting, prefers surprises to spoilers, prefers establishing elements before referencing them
Watched: very recent (2021.11), first time
Rating: Average (2 out of 3 points), Enjoyment: Average (2 out of 3 points)
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This is my review of Alone, a survival horror drama movie from 2020. It's about people trapped in their homes during a zombie apocalypse. The Alone film is watchable, but I don't recommend it, unless you are a very dedicated fans of the zombie genre.
If you'd like to be surprised by the Alone film, I don't recommend you to watch the trailer beyond 0:35, because it gives away too much of the plot. It basically provides a summary of the film, only the last twist is not shown. Also, it makes it look like Alone is an action horror film, but it is not.
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The first time I've heard about Alone when I was reading about #Alive (2020). As I liked that movie, I got interested, and thought that I'll watch it, when I'll have the chance. I had it, so I watched it. I didn't watch the trailer.
The Alone movie is about people trapped in their homes during a zombie apocalypse.
The story is okay. There is a character arc for the main character. There are no major logical problems.
The cinematography is okay, the movie is watchable. The action scenes are easy to follow.
Tthe characters are not very well developed, even though are not that many. Their portrayal by the actors is okay. The characters are not very likeable, it's hard to care about them. The potentially emotional scenes are wasted by them.
The music (Frederik Wiedmann) is okay, but not noticable.
Alone is a watchable survival horror drama, I think fans of the genre might enjoy it. However, I'd rather recommend #Alive (2020), it has practically the same story, but it's better in every aspect, with some addition of comedy. If you'd prefer a more serious take of the premise, I'd recommend The Night Eats the World (2018).
I was mostly satisfied with Alone (2020).
Rating: Average (2 out of 3 points). Alone is an okay film.
Enjoyment: Average (2 out of 3 points). Alone is watchable.
Rewatchability: Low. I think it's mostly the surprise of the story that makes you feel interested.
Chance of watching it again: No. Now that I know the story, there's no need to watch it again.
Chance of watching a sequel: Probably. I might watch it in the right circumstances.
Will you enjoy this?
If you like zombie movies, you might like Alone.
If you like action horror movies (28 Days Later, Train to Busan), you might like the film, although there are not many action scenes in the Alone movie.
If you prefer visuals over story, this movie is okay, although you should prepare that it's mostly the story that drives this movie.
If you hate horror movies with comedy elements, you don't need to worry, there's no humour in the Alone movie.
If you hate romantic zombie movies, the Alone film is safe to watch.
If you are a fan of Tyler Posey, you'll have a chance to watch him naked and half-naked, if that's your wish.
If you hate zombie movies, you shouldn't watch Alone.
Watching for plot points
If you are interested in zombie stories, I think it's probably worth watching the Alone movie for the plot points, although you might be better off if you just read the plot summary.
Should you watch this on your own screen at home, or is it worth going to the cinema?
Good question. As the movie plays in enclosed spaces, and we see lots of close-ups, I think it would be a similar experience.
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I didn't really like the Alone movie, but it was okay.
The covers with Donald Sutherland is a major spoiler, so I don't like that.
The trailer is basically a substitute for watching the movie. It's also misleading, making it look like it's an action horror film.
If you prefer spoilers, it's a great trailer for the Alone film. If you prefer to avoid spoilers, it will ruin the movie for you.
Promise of the first scene
We see a guy trying to commit suicide. I assume we'll see why he got there, and he'll probably have something to do with the rest of the story.
Execution: Well, we got something like that, so the promise is fulfilled.
Plot summary / Synopsis
There's a tired guy with a beard trying to hang himself.
Then we see a pair waking up, and the girl leaving. The guy (Tyler Posey as Aidan) finds out that there's some kind of infection making people murderous cannibals. A neighbour gets in his flat, but he is infected, so he locks him out. His family sends him messages that they'll get to his home, he just needs to take care of his sister. He starts making video logs to occupy himself.
He starts to run out of supplies. An infected gets into his home through an air duct, but he hits her in the head. He gets a voice message from his family, indicating that they are already dead, but his sister got out of town. He tries to get out of his flat, but he needs to retreat from the infected horde. He's about to try to hang himself, when he sees a girl (Summer Spiro as Eva) in a nearby window, so he gives up on his attempt.
He starts to communicate with the girl using pre-written cards. He gets to his neighbour's flat to get some supplies. He finds a portable radio set, so they are finally able to talk with the girl. On one of his supply runs, he meets an old man (Donald Sutherland as Edward). After having a conversation, the old man knocks him out.
He finds himself tied, in a room with an infected old woman. The old man wants to feed him to his infected wife. The young guy gets free, and pushes the old man into his wife, who starts to eat him. He escapes, but the girl's flat was breached. He climbs out to help her. They get together, and reach the flat of the young guy.
They are back where they were at the beginning of the story, but at least they are not alone.
Contemporary alternate / fantasy Earth.
There's an infection, turning people into zombies.
No help arrives for a very long time (40-50 days?), so it's most likely a global occurence.
They are fast, rage virus zombies.
It spreads by biting, as the infection gets into the blood. The infected start to bleed from their eyes.
They seem to act aggressively by their impulses, while still being aware. That's why they howl, as they don't want to do what they are doing. Some scream for help, some asks for getting killed. They are often called "screamers" for that.
Some are very adept at parkour, and they can jump up several meters.
They are killed just like a regular human.
The message of the story
I'm not sure there's one. "Never trust your neighbours"?
The structure of the story
The scenes of the Alone film are mostly played in sequence, following the same storyline. The story starts with a flashforward, then we get back to the beginning, and see how we got to that point, then it continous from then on.
There is no single viewpoint character, although we see 99% of the story through the eyes of the young man.
It has the usual arc of the dramatic structure - introduction, action, resolution.
It ends in a way that makes an immediate sequel possible. (Update: My suspicions were confirmed in this interview, where the main lead tells that from the possible endings, they've chosen the one that leaves the ending open to a sequel.)
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Things I liked
- It was nice to see the characters try to come up with solutions how to survive in a new environment.
- Blocking the windows with newspapers
- Using ropes to get items to others
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How does it compare to the other works of the creators?
From the writer (Matt Naylor), I've seen #Saraitda / #Alive (2020), that was better than Alone.
From the director (Johnny Martin), this is the first film I've seen.
How does it compare to other adaptations of the same story?
Alone is less humorous, and less hopeful than #Alive (2020), although there are more plot-related problems in #Alive. I liked the setting of #Alive better, it looked more interesting for me.
I like the zombies better in Alone.
It's good question, which ending is better. Alone ends without a proper conclusion, things just end. However, the ending of #Alive (2020) is a little too optimistic with the helicopter arriving.
#Alive (2020) has a better balance of emotions, actions, scares, and the message of the movie is hammered into the viewer.
#Alive made the girl more active, it was her actions that interrupted the suicide attempt of the guy, instead of just a random happenstance as in Alone.
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I mostly liked the story, I didn't find problems that would have prevented me from enjoying Alone.
The title: Although titled "Alone", the movie doesn't tell a story about loneliness, and the guy is not alone, there are plenty of zombies around. Even if you disregard zombies, there's still the girl, that's part of the story. In the UK, it's called "Final Days", but it's not really about final days, as we don't see how will things play out. The Canadian title "Pandemic" is not just bland, it's misleading, as we don't really see any kind of pandemic, a guy just sits in a flat.
The protagonist: In the beginning, make it apparent that the guy with the beard and the tattooed guy without the beard are one and the same.
Inattentive guy: There's a girl living straight on the other side of the sidewalk, about 20 meters from him. The girl seems to be active enough, and she had watched the guy for long times enough to make drawing of him. Yet, the guy didn't notice the girl.
Cautious girl: It's clear that the girl knew about the guy living there. Why didn't she try to contact him?
Cozy apocalypse: Even though the characters are stuck in their homes alone, without heating, electricity and running water, while they are starving, they look and act just fine.
The air ducts: The air ducts in the movie look like regularly cleaned service tunnels. Air ducts are designed to be large enough to let the air flow through, but thin enough to not let people get to other apartments. Otherwise, tenants would constantly visit others this way. Even if an adult is able to squeeze themselves into the air duct, it's more than likely they would get stuck.
Talking with the old guy: I've felt the conversation went on for too long.
- Who was the girl in Aidan's bed in the beginning? What happened to her? Why didn't Aidan care about her well-being and whereabouts?
- How did the infected stay active continously? They did't seem to sleep.
- How did the infected stay fit? They didn't seem to drink.
- What's up with the rest of the world?
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Possibilities of improvement
- Edit the conversation with the old man to be slightly shorter
How it could have been better?
It would have helped if the characters were more rounded out. What did they do for a living? What are they like in a regular situation? What were their plans for the future before those got crushed by the epidemic?
I would have preferred if they got out of the block, preferably leaving the whole city, ending the movie with the promise that they might find the sister of the guy.
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Behind the scenes
Thoughts about the reviews of others
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- There's a zombie apocalypse, caused by a rage virus.
- There are people who barricade themselves in their homes during a catastrophe.
- The beginning is a good way to show infection spreading through a city.
Scenarios - Role-playing game
- The characters are promised a safe heaven during a zombi apocalypse, but they are actually trapped, to be fed to the zombies. They have to escape, but there are zombies roaming the place.
Scenarios - Wargame
- Like Gang war for #Alive, but there are secret tunnels / service tunnels / air ducts that can be used to reach the other houses / flats. It would be probably more interesting to randomly generate them, and set up the tunner network as another playing area, but it would be probably easier to just indicate that the models have entered the tunnels, and then roll a d6 at the beginning of every turn to see if they have arrived at their target location. On a 1, they show up, on a 6, they run into a creature, and they have to fight. If the creature wins, it's the creature that comes up at the target location.
Miniatures - 1/50-1/60 (28-32mm scale)
Civilians: Human-sized modern human civilians.
Zombies: Human-sized modern zombies, without weapons. Some are fast moving.
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Martin Page (as Pit Agarman): The Night Eats the World (2012): A man is trapped in a house (due to the horde of zombies) during an epidemic (rage zombies).
#Saraitda / #Alive (2020): People are trapped in their homes (due to the horde of zombies) during an epidemic (rage zombies). Based on the same script as Alone (2020), but it's a lot better.
Containment (2015): A group of people get stuck in a house (due to quarantine enforced by the police) during a epidemic (deadly infection).
La nuit a dévoré le monde / The Night Eats the World, movie (2018): A man is trapped in a house (due to the horde of zombies) during an epidemic (rage zombies). It's a very serious and depressive movie. Based on the The Night Eats the World (2012) novel. It's better than Alone.
Quarantine (2008): A group of people get stuck in a house (due to quarantine enforced by the police) during a epidemic (zombies due to a stolen virus). A remake of REC (2007). It's probably better than Alone.
Rammbock / Berlin Undead (2010): A group of people get stuck in a house (due to the horde of zombies) during an epidemic (rage zombies). Has some humorous parts. It's better than Alone.
REC (2007): A group of people get stuck in a house (due to quarantine enforced by the police) during an epidemic (zombies due to supernatural reasons). It's probably better than Alone.
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Is the Alone film based on a book or comics?
No, Alone is not based on either books or comics. (Unless you consider it based on The Night Eats the World, movie (2018), an eerily similar movie, that's based on the novel of the same name by Pit Agarman.)
Is the Alone film a remake or reboot?
No, the Alone film is neither a remake nor a reboot. There is #Saraitda / #Alive (2020), that was released before Alone, but actually the script for that movie used the script from Alone, it's just that movie was released earlier.
Is there a post credit scene in Alone? Does Alone have end credit scenes?
No, there's no post credit scene in Alone.
Is Alone a copy of #Alive?
Where can I see Alone? Where can I watch Alone online? Is Alone available on Netflix? Is Alone on Amazon?
As of 2021.11.25, Alone is on Amazon, Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, Google Play, Vudu, YouTube.
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IMDB: Alone (XXI) (2020): Database article.
WikiPedia: Alone (2020 horror film): Database article.
Letterboxd: Alone 2020: Database article.
Rotten Tomatoes: Alone 2020: Database article.
: Concept art article.¤
Reviews with no spoilers - Alone film (2020)
Tom Atkinson (for Love Horror): Final Days – AKA Alone (2020) Review: Review article about the Alone film with minor spoilers.¤
Reviews with spoilers - Alone film (2020)
Darren Lucas (for Movie Reviews 101): Final Days (2020) Movie Review: Review article of the Alone movie, with spoilers. Includes a very detailed plot summary.¤
Analysis - Alone movie (2020)
: Analysis video, explaining the finale of Alone.¤
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Have you seen the Alone film? How do you like the movie? Would you recommend it to others? Do you know reviews or resources you'd like to add? What further thoughts do you have about it? Tell your opinion in the comments!