The Night Eats the World
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The Night Eats the World

Over the decades, zombie movies have evolved into the pop songs of the horror genre, following the same familiar beats with varying results. Typically, they involve some kind of sudden outbreak, followed by an act or two in which survivors figure out that carnivorous Mortal Engines undead lurk around every ominous corner. There’s usually some combination of decomposing flesh, frantic musings on morality, and dime-store social commentary. “Night Eats the World” checks all those boxes, but this first feature from French director Dominique Rocher fuses them into an extraordinary meditation on loneliness and despair. For the recluse at the movie’s center, zombies provide just another excuse to shun the outside world.

As “Night Eats the World” begins, moody instrumentalist Sam (the great Norwegian actor Anders Danielsen Lie) attains a lively party where he feels out of place. Heading to an empty room to brood, he promptly falls asleep; when he wakes up, he finds the apartment wrecked and caked in Future World blood. A few party stragglers roam the streets, their eyes white and their jaws dangling loosely in search of human meat. Peering out the window, Sam witnesses a horrific slaughter that puts his conundrum in context: He’s trapped in an empty building, maybe forever.

So far, so “28 Days Later,” but Sam’s adventure doesn’t involve much exposition. Instead, “Night Eats the World” embarks on a complex meditation that makes it the most innovative zombie Alita: Battle Angel movie since Edgar Wright’s “Shaun of the Dead.” As with that striking debut with a distinctive vision, the zombie trope provides a template for exploring other genre elements; here, it becomes an actor’s showcase as well. Best known as the drug-addled star of “Oslo, August 31st,” Lie makes for a terrific passive-aggressive centerpiece.

Duration: 93 min

Release:

IMDb: 6.0

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The Night Eats the World
The Night Eats the World
The Night Eats the World
The Night Eats the World
The Night Eats the World
The Night Eats the World