When I reviewed William Kaufmans gritty cop action flick Sinners and Saints I might have been slightly harsh against it. It had a good beat to it and a lot of competent action built into it. Now that I have seen his latest film; Daylight´s End, I am convinced this is a very solid Genre film director we are dealing with who genuinely delivers what is promised. In this case a generic postapocalyptic zombie/vampire action romp. And does it serviceable in a way that is satisfying. I liked it. Also it has Lance Henriksen in a good role.
What is good about it, is that it goes straight to the point. There is no worldbuilding, as we have seen all these scenarios a thousand times and how different can it be? No, it relies on our knowledge of the genre, it does not need to tell us, we can guess what has happened and go with it. The strength of a pure genrefilm lies in it knowing what it has to do. And we don´t need another sappy backstory, we don´t need dialogue that tells us of "thou mankind has fallen" or the struggle of the dormant evil that lies within all of us. Fuck that. I want to see some heads poppin´.
You have the same sort of survivalist group tensions, without sappy melodrama ( The Walking Dead). You have scenes of looting, scavenging and survivalist speeches. You have the Mad Max-protagonist "shell-of-a-man" which is always good to have in one of these and you have that one particular dirtbag who is only out for himself. And you have a trained pilot who can get them out of there if they can find an airplane. Which they do. The best scene in the film is when the aforementioned asshole comes dragging with a car that can only room like three out of the forty of the group. He insists that the pilot comes with him. For him it is every man for himself. And according to him, it´s a shame, you can´t save everyone. Tough shit. And just around the corner comes one of the survivors driving a big ass bus, that can room everyone. Wow. He must feel like a complete prick now!
This has plenty of violence. Although all of it is CGI´d and the generic violence that surrounds the film coukd have benefitted with some some beats of gory details, dispensed properly through out the actionscenes. Like in Dawn of the Dead. That type of visual structure usually gives a higher impact on the viewer. As it is now, you are just over whelmed with generic CGI blood. A shame, the film woudl have benefitted more fro some of those beats, because what is here works phenomenally well.
It has solid acting, decent production values and a lot of action. Highly recommended to genre fans.