Pandemic, or Alone in the United States, shares major similarities in its plot to the hit 2020 South Korean film #Alive. #Alive, by the way, came out on Netflix back in the fall. Screenwriter Matt Naylor also wrote both of the scripts for the different films.
The film starts when a huge outbreak hits. Aidan (Tyler Posey) barricades himself inside his apartment for safety and starts saving the resources he has left. Infected citizens overrun his complex, and with the world falling apart into chaos, he is completely alone, fighting for survival.
Most of the acting throughout the film is decent with Tyler Posey’s performance being pretty realistic. He acts the same way someone would act in a situation this horrible. He makes smart decisions locking his door and not being afraid to defend himself during a situation. Donald Sutherland is also really good as a civilian Aidan comes across who has been surviving just like him.
Director Johnny Martin does a great job with most of the action scenes. He makes them more intense with the use of tight hallways and tiny rooms with not very many ways out. He accompanies those visuals with a strong sound design, giving it a visceral feel. We feel things whether it’s a loud siren going off in the city, or a baseball bat that a character uses for self-defense
The whole movie has a self-contained feel with it taking place all in one location, creating a claustrophobic atmosphere. Eventually starting to take a toll on the characters emotionally with low supplies and amounts of food.
One area where the film stumbles is with the pacing throughout. Different scenes can start to go on for way too long with Aidan just sitting around. These scen3s do not progress the story along. Especially during the second act introducing a girl he meets. There’s this whole segment where Aidan interacts with her using signs since a glass barrier separates them. This scene feels really of place tonally, like it belongs in an entirely different type of movie. Aidan as a character sadly doesn’t have much character growth or an arc at the end.
Nothing new is also added to really differentiate itself from other thrillers of this genre. It follows nearly all of the cliches you would expect for this type of movie. Like Aidan constantly sneaking around in the dark, which the film follows with a loud noise. And the people infected are your standard zombies with no new unique designs to give them more character.
Even with not adding anything new to the formula Pandemic is an entertaining one-time watch.