Hell (2011) - Tim Fehlbaum German with subs.


It's the near future. Temperatures have soared, water is scarce and the earth's become a barren wasteland, making daytime travelling hazardous, all due to solar flares....I'm not sure that's really scientifically plausible but let's go with it. A group of four survivors look to travel to the mountains to find desperately needed water. On the way they are ambushed...

This was actually perfectly watchable fare; there's nothing overly original to the script, comparable to films such as The Road, Book of Eli, or Stake Land and you'll be able to guess the twists and turns well ahead of time but it's all done competently enough and at 89 minutes long it doesn't overstay its welcome. The cast are all fine, none of them have to do anything out of the ordinary but they do feel like real people put into a bleak situation, so that's refreshing. Hannah Herzsprung from Baader-Meinhoff Komplex is a perfectly serviceable lead, and I found Lars Eidinger as Phillip quite good playing a slightly cowardly and selfish, though in a sense understandably so, companion to her.

The over-saturated palette works well, giving an effective bleached effect of a scorched earth environment. There's no real overarching theme or a great deal of subtext to the film that stretches past the superficial. It's a simple story, reminding me of sections of The Road in its grimness, with elements of horror you would expect in a post-apocalyptic film such as this. It's a relatively low budget film with a small cast and constrained locations but in a film like this it didn't matter, with the Bavarian landscape proving diverting and the story being more intimate/smaller in scope. So another addition to a genre that hasn't had too many stand-out films and while this film never strays above the ordinary it's a perfectly reasonable way to while away a late night with the lights turned off.