The Colony is a sci fi thriller set in the year 2045 where a new Ice Age has made life rather difficult for humans. The cold has devastated crops resulting in a serious food shortage and causing millions to die of hunger. Survivors have resorted to living in underground bunkers to try and stay alive. The people living in these settlements focus on fighting disease and trying to produce enough food to avoid starvation. Each bunker is known as a Colony and every Colony is numbered, this film focuses on Colony 7. Two soldiers called Briggs and Mason are in charge of the Colony and they receive a distress signal from another bunker, Colony 5. Briggs decides to visit the Colony along with two other men called Sam and Graydon. Upon arriving at Colony 5 the men discover some crazed cannibal killers which makes life even harder for all of them. Now they not only have to contend with the cold and hunger but also cannibal nutcases too. The men quickly leg it back to Colony 7 but foolishly allow the cannibals to follow them there. The lunatics then try to infiltrate Colony 7 and kill the residents while the people inside try to fight back.
As a sci fi thriller The Colony ticks all the right boxes and looks fairly entertaining. It has a nice setting, a small bunch of characters that the audience will hopefully get to know and crazed vampire-like killers. It appears to be a film that is following a similar formula to movies like 30 Days of Night which is not a bad idea at all. The film even has a few stars including Laurence Fishburne as Briggs and Bill Paxton as Mason. Fishburne hasn’t starred in a horror or thriller movie since Event Horizon and it is nice to see him doing another one. He always adds a certain amount of gravitas to his roles and he usually always gives a believable performance. The same can be said for Bill Paxton who is always reliable and great at playing flawed characters. He will always be remembered for his roles in films like Aliens where he played the cocky space marine Hudson who loses his nerve once the Xenomorphs show up. The guy was talking about poking the aliens with sharp sticks and sonic electronic ball breakers until they started beating down the door to kill him. Hopefully it won’t be “game over” for the actor in this film as he had a habit of getting killed in his early thriller movies. Back in the days when Bill Paxton appeared in a movie with aliens, terminators or any other villains the viewer knew his character would probably get wiped out sooner or later. The supporting cast includes Kevin Zegers as Sam, Atticus Mitchell as Graydon and Charlotte Sullivan as Kai.
Some thriller fans may be tired of seeing films that are derivative and full of ideas taken from other movies in the same genre. It is rare to see a thriller or horror film these days with a unique, original plot. That is probably the only real flaw The Colony has as it takes a bunch of well worn ideas from other movies and doesn’t appear to offer anything new to the genre. The film looks entertaining enough though and the presence of actors like Fishburne and Paxton may help it stand out.
The trailer is fun to watch as it sets the tone for the film rather well and the cannibals look dangerous. The maniacs also seem to have filed down their teeth which makes them look like vampires. Fishburne, Paxton and Zegers all feature prominently in the trailer too which is no surprise as they are the actors that will put bums on seats. Everything about the trailer is workmanlike and it is a good effort for a low budget film that doesn’t have fancy special effects and pyrotechnics to rely on. In some ways the film has a DTV look to it and it is surprising the movie is getting a cinema release.
Incidentally the film which is a Canadian production was filmed at a decommissioned NORAD (North American Aerospace Defense Command) base in North Bay, Ontario, Canada. If the director Jeff Renfroe can deliver a solid B-movie with a fraction of the budget most big Hollywood movies have that will be a good achievement.
The film will receive a limited release on August 23rd so check out the trailer and share your thoughts.