Z for Zachariah
Directed by Craig Zobel
Starring Chris Pine, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Margot Robbie and Olivia McLouglin
In the wake of a nuclear war, a young woman survives on her own, fearing she may actually be the proverbial last woman on earth, until she discovers the most astonishing sight of her life: another human being. A distraught scientist, he’s nearly been driven mad by radiation exposure and his desperate search for others. A fragile, imperative strand of trust connects them. But when a stranger enters the valley, their precarious bond begins to unravel.
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★★★½ review by davidehrlich on Letterboxd
Noted New York Rangers fan Margot Robbie rules Zobel's intriguing and deceptively rich utopian love triangle about a world where all the ugly people are dead.
FULL REVIEW: www.littlewhitelies.co.uk/features/articles/sundance-2015-z-for-zachariah-29046
★★★★ review by Ava Davis on Letterboxd
"It's fine, it's okay. You all go be white people together, okay?"
★★★½ review by Travis Lytle on Letterboxd
A quiet, symbolically lush drama about loneliness and rebuilding, Craig Zobel's "Z for Zachriah" casts its post-apocalyptic tale in serene and melancholy shades. Accessible and deeply felt, the film does not leave a lasting impression; but it is compellingly told and realized.
Introducing an instantly engaging Margot Robbie as a survivor of some suggested cataclysmic event, the film follows as she realizes she is not alone in her rugged world. Meeting two men who share her plight, she and the others form a necessary community and begin the work of resurrecting a semblance of civilization.
The story and its characters are inviting, engendering recognizable themes and emotions. Built on longing, simmering distrust, and hope, the narrative is deeply felt and appealingly human. It is an observation about the need of family and the fragile nature of community.
Zobel tells his story with a quiet energy and dependence on his cast. His airy, homey landscapes form the subjects of lonely compositions, and editing keeps the pace pulsing forward. Robbie, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Chris Pine, as the film's only characters, form a remarkable cast. Each actor communicates the film's tone and emotions in glances, quiet action, and wanting hands. The actors, along the suggestions presented in the film's calm symbolism, tell a layered cinematic tale.
"Z for Zachariah" is a satisfying, well-cast drama. Unfolding with a peaceful potency, the film makes the most of its narrative suggestions and visual cues. It is an evocative, subtly riveting, and human experience.
★★★★ review by Raul Marques on Letterboxd
A strikingly unique addition to the ever-popular post-apocalyptic genre. The dreadful and melancholic tone usually present in pictures set in these severely disrupted societies, gets replaced by an appropriately chosen, since the location miraculous wasn't affected by a supposedly atomic disaster, breathtakingly gorgeous cinematography. The story moves in a tender pace, delicately exploring the characters, but more importantly their romantic relation.
Sure, the term love-triangle could be applied here, however that denomination carries a lousy reputation and it most certainly doesn't do the excellent way it was developed justice. Robbie and Ejiofor are truly terrific in their performances and have an increasingly solid chemistry throughout the feature. Sadly, the same can't be said about Pine, much due to his inconveniently placed part or the late arrival to the party, he just doesn't work as well as the other two.
The religious themes are teased during the tale, but can't never be fully fleshed out by the script. As for the ending, it's equally underwhelming and elegant at the same time, still being significantly far to be considered a bad closure for this undoubtedly pretty indie project.
★★★½ review by maxwill on Letterboxd
"Z for Zachariah" is a nice, quiet film with passionate performances from its cast, namely Margot Robbie. Calling her work in this film surprisingly subtle and deeply realized would still be an understatement.
It's directed well by Craig Zobel, but suffers from unmotivated character actions from its screenplay and occasional predictability in terms of what's going to happen in the story, but the way the events play out are definitely unique so I must give credit there.
Although "Z" never really got to me or struck any (or very many) emotional chords, I did enjoy watching these characters, everything flows quite nicely, it really is filmed beautifully, and it's worth checking out if you just need a tiny bit more proof that Robbie's going to KILL it as Harley Quinn. I don't have any doubt at this point.
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