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Marina Antunes [Celluloid 07.31.15] post apocalyptic zombies horror

With a title like Extinction, you can pretty much guess what Miguel Ángel Vivas's new film, his English language debut, is about: the end of humanity. In this case, it's the story of the last three survivors of a zombie apocalypse.

Matthew Fox and Jeffrey Donovan star as Patrick and Jack respectively, two men surviving on the outskirts of a big city. They're so far off the beaten bath that even the monsters that prowl the cityscape seem to have forgotten about them. Patrick still makes daily outings into the city with his trusty dog to scavenge but Jack… he's more cautious. He's got a daughter who depends on him so he only goes out when absolutely necessary. And never mind taking anything that his neighbour Patrick might offer. The men don't talk and over the course of Extinction, we learn why.

In flashback sequences peppered throughout, the history between the two men unfolds. I suppose if we had never seen another end-of-humanity thriller or even "The Walking Dead," the story might be somewhat affecting but once it's revealed, in a boring telegraphed way, it feels petty. Especially when one considers that as far as these guys are concerned, they could well be the last three people on earth and yet they can't overcome their differences. Lame.

As one might guess, the trio's quiet survival is interrupted when a zombie comes sniffing around and later returns with some of his friends, forcing the two men to reluctantly team up to save themselves and the little girl.

Extinction is beautiful and aptly made but the story doesn't offer anything new to get excited about.It doesn't even tell a familiar story in a way that makes it interesting. It's a dreadfully familiar tale of sacrifice and survival but it lacks the emotion to make it memorable. Matthew Fox is really bland and boring in the role of Patrick. The character has so much potential but Fox plays him as a one note tortured soul who drinks to get through the nights. Donovan at least breathes a little more life into a character who on the surface, appears to be far less interesting. The two men are dealing with similar emotions in very different ways and though both are cliché, Donovan's is not only more interesting to watch but it also feels more authentic, a combination of both good and bad guy is more interesting to watch than Fox's fatalistic Patrick.

It's not terrible but Extinction also doesn't present anything that makes it memorable. Even the zombies, though they're more like monsters than undead humans, fail to impress. In the end, Extinction is just another run-of-the-mill zombie movie that'll soon be forgotten.

Extinction opens theatrically and is available on VOD on July 31.

Recommended Release: Kidnapped

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