The Day DVD review: Not a day to remember

Release Date: 26 December 2012
2011 | 18 | 87 minutes | £12.99
Distributor: Entertainment One
Director: Douglas Aarniokoski
Cast: Shawn Ashmore, Ashley Bell, Cory Hardrict, Dominic Monaghan, Shannyn Sossamon

If all you require from a post-apocalyptic movie is relentless bleakness, this Canadian indie will tick your boxes. No doubt you’ll nod with approval as the cast drop their payload of F-bombs; as a female character is repeatedly punched in the head; as a villain gloats, “I’m gonna taste your sweet pain, bitch!” – all to a soundtrack of tinnitus whines. Others will find it deadeningly downbeat.

The Day follows a band of five survivors as they search for food and shelter, while trying to steer clear of a mysterious “they”. The exact nature of the apocalypse is never explained, although judging by the way our heroes trudge around in pouring rain with dirt-besmirched faces it presumably involved a virus that eats umbrellas and flannels. The nature of the enemy is teasingly withheld. Vampires? Zombies? The answer eventually provided, as The Day modulates into a single-location siege movie, is a letdown. Naturally, they’re no match for our malnourished heroes’ implausibly superior fighting skills.

It’s certainly well made. The colour scheme (desaturated almost to the point of being monochrome) is unnecessarily tricksy, but there’s some gorgeous cinematography. The cast list is also impressive, featuring familiar faces from franchises like X-Men and Lord Of The Rings.

Lord knows how they reeled them in, though – the script is hewn out of a massive block of solid cliché. The Day has some attractive texture, but bereft of interesting relationships or original ideas, it never manages to provide a reason to care.


A commentary by the director, the writer and a producer.

Ian Berriman

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