Monday, May 28, 2007


Thought I'd mention a few post-apocalyptic films that made an impression on me in the 1980s when I young and impressionable (not like now - impressionable, I mean).

Through the 80s there were a number of great post-apocalyptic films. Looking back, I can see they influenced From Inside. I liked the sci-fi apocalypse films of the 80s - Road Warrior (one of the very few Perfect Films ever made), Terminator, Akira, Escape from NY, Nausicaa (one of my favorite animated films), etc - but it was the depressing stories I really gravitated towards...

Anyway , add these to your Netflix queue:

Luc Besson's Le Dernier Combat, (The Final Battle) 1983. Brilliant for its almost complete lack of dialog.. and raining fish... and rocks.

Testament, 1983. Post nuclear movie. This one affected me more than the made-for-tv The Day After - which was released the same year (actually, I think Testament was made for tv also, but it was too good for tv and got a theatrical release instead). Testament is a small story. I liked that about it. The scene where Jane Alexander is bathing her child after the explosion (was that Lukas Haas!?!) in their kitchen sink and lifts him out to reveal a sink full of blood -- powerful.

Threads, 1984. The best movie ending. Ever. You have to sit through 2 hours of dated filmmaking, though. Do it. No fast-forwarding. Struggle through it and the last few seconds of the film are the most powerful last few seconds you'll ever see. The last cut on Ruth's daughter; brilliant.

Kuroi Ame (Black Rain), 1989. Hiroshima and its aftermath. Tragic.

Grave of the Fireflies, 1988. Even more tragic.

When the Wind Blows, 1986.

Interesting that most of the post-apocalyptic films in the 80s featured a single, apocalyptic event - usually a nuclear explosion. Brazil would be a good exception to that, but in general, I guess there was a lot of nuclear anxiety in the 80s. Most post-apocalyptic stories today do not have a single defining event, but rather a long slow grinding away of order. Children of Men, The Road, Oryx and Crake...