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UK 2023
produced by
Annie Rachel Hillman for No Raging Primitives
directed by David Marantz
starring Ellen Hillman, Neil Sheffield, Kian Pritchard, Gillian Broderick, Angus Kennedy, Stuart Matthews, Andrew May-Gohrey, Daniel May-Gohrey, Simone McIntyre, Helen Coathup, Carl Upshell, Johnny Leigh Wright, Nick Ewans, Paul Hughes
written by David Marantz, music by Daniele Carretta, special makeup effects by Claudette Fruchier, Sara Gerwat

review by
Mike Haberfelner

The zombie apocalypse has struck, and teenaged couple Helen (Ellen Hillman) and Kevin (Kian Pritchard) try to make it to the safety of "the islands" together with their teacher Miss Horton (Simone McIntyre), Helen's little brother Barney (Andrew and Daniel May-Gohrey) in tow. Now Barney has been bitten by a zombie but hasn't turned yet, and by feeding him raw meat periodically, Helen tries to avert the worst. Eventually, the kids and their teacher separate, and while hopes are slim for Miss Horton, the young ones make it to the house of Dan (Neil Sheffield), who at first comes off as a totally unlikeable hermit, but eventually it's revealed that he's so bitter only because he keeps his wife (Helen Coathup) chained up in his attic while she's slowly turning into a zombie. Eventually, he even promises to help them get to "the islands", well, at least he shows them where to re-charge their GPS, at a nearby abandoned school - where the kids come across another group of survivors, led by Father Albert (Stuart Matthews). At first, they seem nice enough, and there's strength in numbers, right? But eventually they find out that Barney's turning and want to kill him. And when Helen finds out why the group needs her to get into their potential safe haven, "the valley", the gloves are off, and its humans versus humans much more than humans versus zombies ...


Now zombie films these days are a dime a dozen, and approximately for the first half of this film one can't shake the feeling of having seen everything shown here before - though that's not saying that the film isn't well executed as it quite clearly is. But it's the closer Alive moves towards its ending, the more it comes into its own, and in a very unexpected way, as  as much as there's all the zombie action you'd come to expect from a movie like this, it more and more leans towards a humanistic angle to look at things, by really blurring the line between monster and victim and asking questions rarely asked in zombie cinema. And that the whole thing's well executed, decently paced and solidly acted really helps make this a very enjoyable and somewhat unusual piece of zombie cinema.

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review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD