The Survivalist

In a time of starvation, a survivalist lives off a small plot of land hidden deep in forest. When two women seeking food and shelter discover his farm, he finds his existence threatened.


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  • ★★★★ review by street on Letterboxd

    I thought it was a dumb name too, but there's a surprising amount of gardening in this movie! For every brutal, violent scene of post-apoc hoodiemen savagely killing each other there are about 50 that are just some dude survivaling - and at least one time jerking off on his plants. Why do I feel like I'm not selling this very well.

  • ★★★½ review by Shikhar Verma on Letterboxd

    Consider if Mad Max was a drama that featured a picture perfect, clean shaved, razor-sharp survivalist with a harmonica instead of a doof-warrior with a flaming guitar. Instead of trucks, cars & all the shenanigans there were sexual desires for the memorabilia & only two shells that could favor the one who wishes to get saved.

    Three people can never be two, and two people can never be one. For something that is about the descend into the end of civilization, Stephen Fingleton’s tale of survival has a very powerful, at times haunting, message of trust and loyalty.

    The Survivalist uses it's silence to speak volumes about what needs to be kept at bay, and what should be kept locked in the closet. Fingleton makes looking at a graph of the end of times - scary. His stark look into a place where poison & traps are something out of a creature in a dilemma is painful.

    Part of: Films Of 2016 Ranked.

  • ★★★★ review by pd187 on Letterboxd

    you know how in terminator they imply desperate wiry kyle reese has been yankin n crankin to that crumpled old photo of sarah connor hundreds of times when he shouldve been looking out for robot skeletons who want to kill him... this is a movie about that level of crazed violent post-apoc thirst & its 1 of my faves ive seen this year

  • ★★★½ review by Nexkez6 on Letterboxd

    "Would you be able to spare some of your crop?"

    Alone on his small patch of land within the forest he is careful. When not tending to his crop he is watching, waiting, prepared to defend himself from those that will take what little he has. His solitude broken by the appearance of a mother and daughter outside his door, willing to trade for food and shelter.

    Distrust fills his home in this grim tale inside a confined apocalyptic setting, coated in an atmosphere of foreboding. We learn through their actions rather than exposition that the women have been in this type of situation before, looking for a way to overcome him. He carries the weight of his past that visits him in his dreams, a run through the forest, a hand on his shoulder.

    After he saves the girl from the clutches of an armed man, himself wounded in the process an uneasy bond is formed, decisions need to be made.

    The three leads played by Martin McCann, Mia Goth as the daughter and Olwen Fouere as the mother all put in good performances in tough roles and writer/director Stephen Fingleton makes good use of his low budget creating atmosphere and tension.

    The world here is harsh and unforgiving, survival itself a selfish act, seeds to grow food are prized, the pages of a bible just paper to be used for creating fire. The sound of nature broken by a few notes on a harmonica, masturbation, mushroom soup, shallow graves, a tense shave, bathe in the creek, bear traps, an attempt at self abortion.

    Unflinching in its presentation and worth seeing.

  • ★★★½ review by Grimbo on Letterboxd

    Imagine a character origin flashback episode of The Walking Dead without any zombies and you have The Survivalist, only it's set in Ireland.

    Although this has females who use their bodies to barter for stuff, which is a storyline that TWE probably wouldn't touch.

    Well worth a watch!

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