’31 Days of Horror’ Review – I Am Alone (2015)

by Nile Fortner

Here we go again folks, another zombie flick, and another found footage film. A zombie film and a found footage horror flick may not tickle the fancy of a majority of horror fans anymore. I mean, what else can be done in the genres? It feels like we’ve seen it all when it comes to found footage and brain eating zombies.

I personally like zombie movies, and found footage does have a special place in my heart. But lately the two genres have not been doing it for me, and they do not enthuse me like they used to.  With that being said, I believe that director and co-writer Robert A. Palmer, co – writer Michael A. Weiss, and the rest of the crew at ‘Abstract Forces Productions’ will –

Have a special place in my heart because I Am Alone made me enthusiastic again, and is a refreshing flick that I’m glad I had the opportunity to check out.

So what is this bad boy all about? A reality TV show called I Am Alone plans to film the next episode in the mountains of Colorado and they’re pretty much playing survivor for a week. While in a nearby town, they get a couple of interviews, and film some nice scenery. That’s when the virus happens, when it spreads, and when the zombies come out to play. People are infected, everyone is in a panic, and everyone is simply trying to survive.

From the very start of this movie, I knew what type of film I was going to get. From the opening scene, I’m sure most viewers know what they are getting themselves into. That would be a stylish, retro grindhouse feel for this film.

This movie is made on a low budget, and that is okay. I love that this project worked within the budget and it forced them to be more creative. For instance, instead of a found footage flick just showing us from point A to point B, it’s more of point A to point B with a character and not so much numerous settings. It sort of reminded me of the horror film ‘Contracted’ because it mostly follows a character, their journey, and the transformation.

While watching this, I couldn’t help but think of the late and great George Romero. It seems like zombie director George Romero, was a big inspiration to the film, and a big inspiration to how the zombies operate. These zombies simply want brrraaaaainnsss!

For me, the best parts of the movie were the zombie outbreak and seeing these likable characters. I actually thought the outbreak was done well, and it had some tension. The characters are likeable and most important of all, they come off as real individuals.

One thing I wasn’t the biggest fan of was the back and forth action between the found footage and some of the bunker scenes. The bunker scenes are with our main character Mason, played by Gunner Wright, and that does play a role in the story. However, I personally believe it would have made more of an impact with the interrogation being more at the end. When it goes back and forth, it feels a little uneven and it feels like I’m missing on some action.

Another issue I have with film is the writing. I believe this film could have been written a little bit better story wise. Earlier, I mentioned how zombie flicks and found footage is really nothing all that new or impressive because it is so overdone now.  The movie did work with what it had, but I do believe it could have had more originality. For example, the film could have started with the zombie outbreak, then the interrogation in the bunker, to society trying to find salvation. Maybe, instead of zombies eating the usual meal of guts, the virus can be airborne. This is just my opinion, but the film seems to focus just a tad more on the zombies instead of humanity. Any good zombie story is not really about the zombies.  Zombie stories work best when you use them as a mirror to highlight certain aspects of humanity.

The found footage is obviously not just found footage to be cheap, but it’s for a reason that plays into the story. This is a good example of how a found footage film enhances a character and story.

I really dig the location they had for this film. The camera work and cinematography almost came naturally from the beauty of Colorado, the town, the hills, and it is a good-looking film.

This movie is not for everyone. If you are someone who enjoys B-Movies, movies on the ‘SyFy’ and ‘Chiller’ channels, then I think you will get a good bite out of this movie. If you are someone who doesn’t fit into this category, then I honestly think you will not enjoy this. It takes a special kind of horror-head for these types of films.

I Am Alone could be more original and had a better script, but I feel like horror fans and horror filmmakers get shorthanded when it comes to plot. Writers, directors, and producers think we just want the usual jump scares and gore, and that is not true. This is a film I had absolutely no idea about, and I’m glad I got to see it. While watching this, it took me back to my childhood watching the ‘SyFy’ and ‘Chiller’ channels. Much like those channels and movies, this did take me back to the good ol’ days, and this movie did have a special place in my heart. 

I am giving I Am Alone a 3 out of 5 Hairpieces!

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