Final Days is now available to rent, buy or stream.
Pandemic themed horrors are here to stay, especially given recent events. But, while a few have managed to reflect the absolute horror of lockdown, others have faltered. Final Days sadly sits in the latter in exploring pandemic themes within a tried and tested zombie format. In fact, the only remotely engaging segment of director Johnny Martin’s lacklustre horror is a brief appearance from Donald Sutherland. Here Martin’s film is void of any real bite as a troop of bland zombies usher in the apocalypse while Tyler Posey walks around his apartment half-naked.
I found myself far more interested in Tyler’s tattoos than the end of humanity for a film labelled as a pandemic horror. Here the ex-Teen Wolf star seemingly uses this weak venture as an opportunity to get naked as much as possible, and while I am not complaining, it is hardly riveting viewing. The result is an eye-catching but flawed one and a half hours of abs and no story. Now, this is not a direct criticism of Posey’s performance, as he does everything possible with the lacklustre screenplay on offer – his ability to hold the screen admirable given the poor story at hand. But you can’t help but feel that all the body shots are a cheap ploy to cover the tracks of a decidedly weak film.
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On waking up next to a random girl (who soon vanishes), Aiden (Tyler Posey) has little recollection of the night before. But, as he pulls his arse out of bed, his morning is about to be disrupted by a commotion outside his flat. Pulling himself together, Aiden opens the curtains only to witness a handful of people running around covered in blood and a helicopter crashing into a nearby highrise.
Now, as I am sure you can imagine, a hangover and apocalypse don’t mix. Still, Aiden quickly pulls on his pants before the zombies invade, his freshly bitten neighbour, the first of many zombies to threaten his security. Fearing more zombie neighbours are on their way, Aiden quickly barricades himself in the flat with a fridge. Following this, we spend the next thirty minutes watching Posey’s beard grow as he records a video diary nobody will see. But, just when Aiden is ready to end it all with a makeshift noose, he spots an uninfected girl from his window.
Eva (Summer Spiro) lives in the apartment opposite Aiden, her immaculate hair, makeup and clothes hiding the fact that she has no running water, little food and no electricity. Of course, Aiden finds himself immediately transfixed by the young woman, his new mission the protection of Eva at all costs with the hope of eventually making babies. But how can he support and woo her when they are separated by a zombie riddled courtyard?
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The story that ensues is riddled with plot holes, simplistic dialogue and zombies that never generate an ounce of fear. However, one genuinely interesting sequence could have saved Final Days given more time, scope, and development. In this sequence, Donald Sutherland and Tyler Posey meet unexpectedly in a neighbouring flat as they search for food – the tension of their meeting growing as they attempt to understand each other’s motives. Here Aiden is innocent to the absolute horror Sutherland’s Edward is hiding. These scenes highlight what could have been by introducing a brief but interesting and engaging story arc. However, these themes are discarded in favour of Aiden and Eva’s love story and their potentially zombie-free babies.
Final Days attempt to reflect our current pandemic world within a classic zombie horror format never gets off the ground. Its screenplay, a jumble of ideas that never find an authentic voice. While at the same time, the story’s possible horror finds itself trumped by a half-naked Posey and lazy love story that ultimately leads us nowhere.