Movie Review: Pandemic (2016)

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Pandemic is a John Suits directed 2016 action-horror/thriller film in which Rachel Nichols is Dr Lauren Chase, a doctor studying a worldwide outbreak and those suffering from the disease. Also on her team are Wheeler (Alfie Allen), Gunner (Mekhi Phifer) and Denise (Missi Pyle), and the foursome set out across Los Angeles to find survivors of the plague. The film is shot primarily from the first person perspectives of the cameras on the groups’ bio-suits, so the film is almost like a first person shooter video game.

+ Rachel Nichols, Alfie Allen and Missi Pyle (Dr Chase, Wheeler and Denise, respectively) are all serviceable in their roles. Allen, in particular, is a standout as the smartass driver
+ the action is fast paced and once or twice culminates in a very violent finale to the little skirmish (though admittedly these are almost over the top or ‘cartoonish’). Mostly, the film is relatively tame for a modern horror movie

– although I get the feeling it was meant to be, the film is never particularly scary. There were not even many jump scares, which could have been easily utilised with the first person perspective
– there are only so many times these supposedly intelligent/well trained military professionals can walk backwards into a hallway, or look horizontally only and decide there are n threats around before it becomes tiresome.

> it is so strange to hear Alfie Allen not talking like Theon Greyjoy. Even his Russian accent in John Wick was better suited to him, but his American accent here is just jarring.
> much like my revelation from Hardcore Henry about recurring actors, it blows my mind that the next film I choose to watch after Hardcore Henry just happens to be another first person film. I swear I’m not doing this on purpose. (Note that Hardcore Henry was released a week after this film in the USA)

Should you see this film: Don’t bother. As far as horror movies go, it is not particularly scary, and in regards to an action film, recently reviewed Hardcore Henry did the first-person gimmick better. The plot is cliched, and nothing particularly exciting is able to set this apart from any other “zombie” movie.

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