The BatteryClosed Captioning
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Bucking convention, The Battery is more than your average post-apocalyptic survival movie. At its heart, it is a road movie in its truest sense; two former baseball players with vastly different personalities and agendas do everything they must to survive their way across New England. Filled with bold and gutsy decisions and incredibly witty dialogue, this is one trip through a world ravaged by the living dead, you will never forget. A FilmBuff Presentation.
A slightly spoilery synopsis of an awesome zombie flick
A little tired of $100 million zombie films with a stupid story and characters you couldn't care less about? Just see the WORLD WAR Z trailer and say "This inane blur of crud is not for me"? Then you really owe it to yourself to watch THE BATTERY, an excellent micro-budget zombie film directed by Jeremy Gardner and starring Gardner and Adam Cronheim.
THE BATTERY follows the adventures of Ben (Gardner) and Mickey (Cronheim) as they wander the Connecticut countryside following an unseen zombie apocalypse of the recent past. No huge explosions, no hordes of zombies clambering up to attack an airborne helicopter, just a reasonably quiet exploration of a couple guys trying to get by after the end of the world.
The kicker is that Ben & Mickey aren't exactly BFFs (more like casual acquaintances, if anything) and ended up together almost by chance, the point repeatedly driven home by their polar opposite views of their mutual situation. Ben takes it all in stride, practicing his home run swing on unfortunate zombies they come across, while Mickey lives in the past, placing almost as much importance on finding batteries for his portable CD player as, y'know, food. Eventually, a chance discovery leads the two to the existence of the mysterious 'Orchard' and possible 'rescue' from their nomadic lifestyle.
THE BATTERY was made on a $6,000 budget. That's right - six THOUSAND. Even if it had a six million dollar budget, the film would be a notable success. The script is tight, the cinematography is beautiful, the acting is enjoyable, and the end result is a great and surprisingly haunting experience that stays with you long after the end credits roll. Anyone with the least bit interest in character studies and/or zombies owes it to themselves to check it out.
Great, but not for everyone
As an aspiring film student, I found this film to be a wonderful and refreshing take on a largely overdone genre. Like District 9 revived the alien invasion plot, I think this film works interestingly to do the same to the zombie plot. The perspective of the story is somewhat artful in that it doesn't have a clearly defined climax, ending, direction, or goal; yes, there will be a lot of waiting and wondering when something (some kind of major action point) will happen. But it doesn't because the movie is sort of like a roaming, realistic, day-to-day glimpse into the journey of two average guys as they just try to scrape out a life in the undead world. It's not particularly exciting, it's not thrilling. But it's gritty, tough, and dramatic in parts and it's the realest zombie film I've ever seen with true heart. Yes, Walking Dead is awesome with lots of blood, guts, and fights, but this movie works just as well in different ways. It doesn't rely on scare tactics, buckets of fake blood, or weapons to make it interesting; it relies on two guys and the internal chaos and devolution they undergo as their lives unravel. It's beautiful. And watching it will make you see the genre differently. I know art films aren't for everyone, but I highly recommend this one, definitely worth the rental. I'm a fan of Gardener and hope he considers doing a sequel.
Great indie zombie flick!
Saw this in October at the Telluride Horror Show and it was easily the best movie I saw at the festival. I love the way it focuses on these two characters and how they both choose to deal with what's happened to their world. It's a baseball buddy movie, meets odd-couple, meets zombie apocalypse; equal parts levity, character tension, and suspense. If you like indie movies shot on a small budget, enjoy character development, and like flesh-eaters you won't regret checking this movie out.