Monday With Mildred: “The Night Eats the World”

Enjoy this Monday with Mildred!

This is a Zombie World Tour post!

The Night Eats the World movie poster in English.

The Night Eats the World

The last time I went to France on the Zombie World Tour I was not just disappointed but seriously ticked off by the misogynistic attitude toward anything female, even the dead ones. I was hoping for something a little better this time, and was encouraged that I would at least find something different because the protagonist is an American.

The opening scenes of this Parisian zombie film are at a crowded, swingin’ party in an amazingly large and gorgeous apartment. The endless waves of gorgeous people either completely ignore or turn their nose up at the American trying to find his ex in the crowd so he can get the rest of his stuff from her and get out of her life. In a The Quiet Earth moment, he falls asleep in the silent den. The one with the closed door. When he wakes up the next morning The End is a done deal. Once he has figured out that everyone is dead and dangerous, it’s time to mop up the blood and gore in the apartment and begin his life as The Last Man On Earth, so far as he can tell. Because he’s alone, there is very little dialogue throughout.

The very well done zombies, who swarm at a quick 3 Romero speed but have a short attention span, are shown in great camera angles in several dialogue free minutes. The production values are great all around, like clever staging to make the carnage look widely spaced. Paris is a large city to die overnight, and it will make a mess. The bullet shaped building he’s stuck in is a nice touch. I wondered immediately how many people would get that joke.

I had a moment when this young man knows how to use an old double barrel shotgun. Despite the great love Americans have for guns, that’s an esoteric firearm and I had a hard time believing his instant understanding of how it works. On the other hand, how cool was it to see a double barrel shotgun?

A moment later I had a LOL at the military zombie story style of constant inventorying of his foodstuffs and ammunition. I have been known to make fun of that particular quirk in Military Zombie Fiction and regular post-apocalypse fiction. Maybe it’s just a guy thing?

There were a lot of nods to other works I recognized, like 28 Days Later, where the thousand bowls on the roof failed to catch rain because apparently it doesn’t do that in London. There was a recurring setting that I wasn’t sure was a nod to The Sound of Noise. The biggest nod was the constant taking of STUPID RISKS (all caps in my notes) like running around wearing noise cancelling earphones, which reminded me of George Romero’s Land of the Dead, and kept me on the edge of my seat as I waited for that to bite him in the ass (pun intended). The cat’s appearance was brief, but made me laugh in his incredible catness.

There were some very cruel twists, one of which really broke my heart, and a well done emotional ending. As a whole I found this to be a solid film overall that would be a great Halloween season addition to your movie rotation. It’s quiet, like Pontypool, but not practically goreless. There are a number of edge of your seat moments, and a likeable protagonist you will root for. I highly recommend watching this movie, even if it’s not zombies you’re looking for but a generally fine film.

The Night Eats the World, French version.


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