Movie Review-Dead Weight

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Plot-This film focuses on Charlie Russell. As the film opens up his girlfriend Samantha calls him and tells him to turn on the television. We soon learn that there is an apocalyptic outbreak happening and everyone is evacuating and looking for safety. He tells Samantha to meet him at Wausau, where they first went out on a date. So Charlie begins his journey to do whatever it takes to find Samantha and avoid the infected people.

Review-Forget everything you have seen about end of the world apocalyptic films. Because looking at the plot, this is what people are expecting some Book of Eli or a guts gore fest zombie film rip off, and those fans will be letdown. The first thing that impressed me about this film was the script, and the emphasis it had on telling a story and building characters. While most of the time in this film, it switches back and forth from what is going on now to memories of Charlie and Samantha that drive him to travel all over this wasteland to find her. Most of the film is watching Charlie in a group with other survivors trying to avoid the infected on the way to Wausau that Charlie has convinced the group that it is their best bet for survival, while we know he is only bringing them there so he can look for his girlfriend. The majority of the film is about choices, and what choices we make and how we handle the end result of that choice. And just what Charlie will do to get to see his girlfriend again. When Charlie and the group come across a group of survivors around the half hour mark, shows us how bad civilization of the living has become so desperate and almost insane when they try to abduct the female in Charlie’s group because they have not seen a woman in so long. Well, another scene they encounter more survivors that paint a different story of what society has become and turned people into and they create a different kind of threat for Charlie and the group. You witness throughout this film how desperate everyone is to survive and what measures they take, and how this end of the world has really brought out the true person in each of us.

This film creates an atmosphere that keeps you glued to the screen; it has such an uncertainty to it that really worked. You can never guess how any of the scenes will play out. I was at first ready to hate the ending they started to give. I thought this film was too smart to go that route and it was, because the ending had not one but two little twists to it. This film gave you something to talk about long after the credits rolled, and gave you an ending that you will not see coming.

My negatives and complaints are few; I hated some of the flashback scenes and thought they did drag and take away from the plot. I mean, I know the purpose they served but I think maybe cut back on one or two of them scenes, or make them shorter would have been really a better idea. I did love the ending; it was such a fuck you to what people are going to expect. I loved the characters and story; I wanted to re-watch this film right after the credits. This is survivalist thriller done right. This film is a must see and deserves all the buzz it is getting right now. Dead Weight is proof that sometimes you do not need special effects or buckets of gore, sometimes you just need a story and the actors to carry it thru.

8.5 out of 10


  • Thanks so much, James!

    -John and the Dead Weight family