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Solos (2008) Movie Poster
Chile  •    •  74m  •    •  Directed by: Jorge Olguín.  •  Starring: Camille Lynch, Karina Pizarro, Carolina Andrade, Cristobal Barra, Rosa Luiz Ramos, Carina Vera, Jorge Yaber, Nicolás López, Patricio Lynch, Gisella Perez, Martín Morales, Steven Chau, Antonia Carcamo.  •  Music by: Claudio Perez.
      In an undefined future, the earth has been destroyed by man, and the air polluted with a mysterious virus that turns humans into zombies. Only a few children are immune to the disease and have adapted to these extreme conditions and survived. Camille, a nine year old girl wanders through these desolate wastelands, protecting herself from zombies and the armed military forces that roam the land killing anyone who might be infected. However, the little girl will find other kids like her that share a recurring dream of: they all have visions of the ocean as their destiny. Together they will try to survive the journey to the ocean in search of an escape from the military who seem to be as determined on their destruction as on the zombies.


We "soft-hearted" Yanks will supposedly be drawn to anything with a kid or kids in it, as Chilean writerdirector Jorge Olguin presumably knows. In "Descendents" his characters mostly speak accented English, so I gather he had his eye on the American market. His protagonist, Camille, born after the outbreak of (yet another) mysterious disease turning humans into crazed zombie-like creatures, has the telltale marks on her neck indicating she's immune to the killer bug. Most of the (relatively short) running time is about her wandering around either alone or with similar genetically fortunate kids trying to reach the ocean, where there is supposedly a boat andor a friendly giant octopus waiting. (The kids keep their necks covered, presumably to hide the marks, although it's pretty clear they're immune since they're not coughing up blood and trying to eat people.) There are also a lot of flashbacks with Camille's now dead mother, which at first tug at the heart strings somewhat, but after a while I started to get the flashbacks confused with the present day scenes; they're all shot with that currently popular bleached out virtual black and white look that I guess is meant to give the proceedings a "documentary" aura. To borrow a term from the late Roger Ebert, we also have the "semi obligatory" cold blooded soldiers blasting away at anything that moves. (Come to think of it, "28 Days Later..." has an awful lot to answer for. Could Danny Boyle have had any idea he was writing the new rules for zombie fare?) Camille Lynch as Camille is stoic and completely believable as a kind of Alice in Horrorland, and the other kids are good too, although it's hard to keep track of who they all are. The adult actors are all competent. The settings and effects are impressive, especially on such a low budget. But I hesitate to give it the Ebertian thumb up, if only because there's really nothing here that hasn't been seen before (see above re Danny Boyle). I did like the opening using Camille's drawings to illustrate the violent demise of humanity, but at the end Mr. Olguin suddenly tries to insert an element of "magic realism," which in the South American context seems to mean "any goofy thing that strikes the writer's or director's fancy." Here it just seems bizarre after the preceding bleak real realism. But it is what it is. Compare this with Guillermo Del Toro's "Pan's Labyrinth" for a much more holistic vision of a child caught up in a real-life adult nightmare seamlessly intertwined with the fantasy element, ultimately more credible and thus more heartbreaking for all the dark whimsy.

Review by BigBabe0 from the Internet Movie Database.