In a shitty future in which humanity has been nearly decimated by a disease that turns normal folk into bloodthirsty lunatics, Anna (Lulu Antariksa) lives with her brother and dying mother in a small cabin in the woods. The siblings make treks to the remains of a nearby city to scavenge for whatever they can find to survive…but they have to be careful, for if they stay too long the dwellers of the ruins, the Berserkers (who legend has it infected themselves with the aforementioned disease on purpose), will find them and be rather agitated…and by that I mean completely prone to murderizing anyone they see. Short story short, Anna’s brother buys it and her dying mother changes roles to become her dead mother leaving our plucky heroine alone in a hostile world. Soon a stranger, Peter (Colin O’Donoghue) arrives, and invites Anna to travel back with him to where he calls home. Reluctantly she agrees, as there is truly strength in numbers but will trusting Peter lead to a situation more dire than the one she left…especially as she learns more of the community he came from?
What works first and foremost in What Still Remains favor is the strength of it’s leads, Antariksa and O’Donoghue. These two deliver incredible performances, and manage to engage viewer interest throughout the film’s ninety minute run time, which is a good thing seeing as how their asses are on screen for the lion’s share of the film (but all of that is not to discredit the excellent chops of the supporting cast as well). Speaking of interest, this tale, while slow burn and dialog heavy in lieu of much action (until the third act anyway), is nevertheless poignant and not without it’s share of tension, especially as our heroes have to stay one step ahead of the crazed Berserkers (as well as other dangerous folk roaming the woods). Finally in the plus column, What Still Remains features some well done plot twists that your’s cruelly didn’t see coming, which always makes a fun time at the ol’ picture show!
In the negative column, What Still Remains is primarily a hybrid drama/thriller, with an emphasis on weighty dialog and theological posturing. That’s not to say that their isn’t an undercurrent of suspense that does eventually lead to explosive violence, just don’t go into this expecting a post-apocalyptic free for all jam packed with lump in your throat inducing action sequences.
What Still Remains is a more cerebral take on the post-apocalyptic yarn, with just a sprinkling of the genre’s trappings, mostly in the form of the warlike and scared Berserkers; it’s a slow burn, suspenseful journey well worth taking!
For more on What Still Remains from Horror Fuel head here!