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The Abandoned (2008)

The Abandoned


Not to be confused with the 2007 Nacho Cerda film of the same title, this movie, also called The Abandoned, is a low-budget, post apocalyptic film shot in New York by writer, director, producer Matthew A. Peters.   The story takes place in a frozen future where temperatures are so cold at night that no one can survive.  The protagonist is a young man named Nate (played by Mark Joseph Peek) who had been raised by a fatherly old guy that let Nate believe that the rest of the world's population was all dead.  However, the old guy actually knew that there were still a handful of people alive in the cities who lived in constant fear of a group of zombie-like, genetically mutated flesh eaters known as Creepers.  When Nate convinces the old guy to let him tag along into the city, he comes face to face with both a lovely young girl and the horrendous Creepers that plague the remaining humans.  Nate decides to stay with the survivors and help them make the dangerous journey to a city believed to be harboring the rest of the surviving humans are living.

Although the plot idea was actually pretty good, much of the quality of the film is inconsistent.  The camera work can be still for one shot and shake like the Blair Witch Project on the next.  A few shots were very well composed while many shots seemed to have absolutely no thought put into where the camera should be. Some of the FX fit almost seamlessly into the film while others stand out so much that it's distracting.  By comparison to the rest of the cast, Mark Joseph Peek does a fair job of acting, but the majority of the acting is extremely awkward and not even remotely convincing.  The issue isn't helped by the dialog, which may have sounded fine on paper, but when spoken, it often doesn't sound like anything that anyone would actually say.  On the other hand, even lines you've heard dozens of times before in other movies don't work here because of the bad delivery.  The audio was much more consistent than most films of this budget and much of the music was actually pretty good, but even here there were problems hearing the dialog in several scenes.  

I don't mean to sound like the film was without merit.  The story was relatively interesting and there were a lot of fight scenes with a lot of blood.  The fight scenes weren't choreographed well (assuming they were choreographed at all), but they did keep things moving.  Plus, there was a snowmobile chase scene.  That was cool.  I mean how often to you see a snowmobile chase scene?!  Also, despite the numerous problems with believability of the post apocalyptic details, they actually did a much better job than I would have expected of making the film look like it was set in a city that had been destroyed years ago.  That was impressive for a film of this budget.

Matthew A. Peters' The Abandoned has some problems, but it's not the worst low budget, homemade films that I see.  For more information, check out the website here:


Gore-o-meter rating: 3 out of 5
(The amount of blood is high while the quality is low)

Skin-o-meter: 0 out of 5 (no nudity)