(directors: Gez Medinger/Robin Schmidt; screenwriter: Andrew Ellard; cinematographer: Benedict Spence; editor: Matthew Bate; music: Steve Wright; cast: Miranda Raison (Robyn), Sam Keeley (Seb), Daniella Kertesz (Onie), Elarica Gallacher (Patricia), Lorna Nickson Brown (Livvy); Runtime: 88; MPAA Rating: NR; producers: Cameron Lawther/Gez Medinger; Acheron Films; 2015-UK)

“Not packing much gravitas.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

When Robyn (Miranda Raison) wakes up dead on a deserted beach, brought in by the tide, she discovers written in the sand are the words “Even the good are damned.” Which sounds like a Sartre quote. Robyn was killed that night when the night-club she was in collapsed. The living-dead woman, troubled by a black smoke in the air, walks past an active beaming lighthouse (whose bright light is painfully felt) to a small cabin on the beach and finds others in her same predicament of being stuck in limbo between life and death. The four others also died in the roof accident: Seb (Sam Keeley), Patricia (Elarica Gallacher), Livvy (Lorna Nickson Brown) and Onie (Daniella Kertesz). When the frightened Robyn enters–Seb is pre-occupied in a threesome with Patricia and Livvy, while Onie is cutting her wrists to no avail in the toilet.

The five goners, under smarty-pants Robyn’s leadership, then spend a good-deal of time trying to figure out how they got here and if it’s possible to escape their fate. For some viewers, the attempt by the five to con God may be ludicrous.

Co-directors Gez Medinger and Robin Schmidt, in their debut feature film, and writer Andrew Ellard, take the novel approach of trying to figure out where do we first go if we don’t arrive in heaven or hell. To finally asking if we will get into the right place according to our life deeds. To their credit the filmmakers take things seriously and give their unique take on things by claiming everything works against us because sin in the material world is almost unavoidable. Devout religious folks will probable find the arguments presented here distasteful, while materialists will find it incomprehensible to think there’s an eternal life. With something to offend nearly everyone the bizarre film, which only has a few lucid moments, at least deserves credit for trying something different. Though, if you want my two cents, I found it embarrassingly juvenile and not packing much gravitas.


Dennis Schwartz: “Ozus’ World Movie Reviews”