Blumhouse Television & EPIX presents UNHUMAN
Directed by: Marcus Dunstan
Written by: Patrick Melton & Marcus Dunstan
Brianne Tju -Ever
Benjamin Wadsworth -Randell
Uriah Shelton -Danny
Ali Gallo -Tamra
Drew Scheid -Steven
Peter Giles -Mr.Lorenzo
Lo Graham -Jacey
C.J. LeBlanc -Hunt
Blake C. Burt – Ryan
Tony Donno -Wayne/Bus Driver
Executive Producers: Alex Kruener, Jeremy Gold, Chris McCumber, Jason Blum
Run time: 91 min
High School can be Hell on Earth for some and for this lot of students in UNHUMAN it proves to be even more than that.
The film starts off by introducing our students and is quick to put labels on each of them “The Popular” and “The Randos”(as in random). Each of these groups comes together for a class field trip in which their abrasive bully of a teacher Mr. Lorenzo (Peter Giles) runs the ship (or school bus as it may be). The bus that the students are on gets into an accident and all seven students from different social groups must work together to survive an “unhuman” threat.
Director Marcus Dunstan (Saw IV, V, VI and Saw: The Final Chapter, The Collector trilogy) sets the pacing of this movie fast and that is something of an asset as there is not much time to think about what is going on. This is a tight 91-minute ride and there’s no waste when it comes to telling the story.
The plot seems typical for a teen horror film, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t some hidden gems, especially in the third act. The charm of this film is not knowing all the mysteries beneath until they slowly reveal themselves.
What makes this a perfect horror film is that all the cast is on board and gives all to their performances. Brianne Tju (I Know What You Did Last Summer) as “Ever” gives a fun yet powerful performance. Her relationship with her best friend “Tamra” (Ali Gallo) is put through the test as they battle the zombies and try to survive.
The students find solace in an abandoned graffiti-lathered building deep in the woods. Here they hold up while looking for weapons to defend themselves. The contrast between the two groups (popular and unpopular) really ramps up the tension, especially when the zombies show up on the scene and start taking students out one by one.
There are mysteries in this building and each student must face who they are perceived to be to survive. Quickly they start to learn that they must put their “Social Status” on hold and work together before it’s too late. There is character growth plenty in UNHUMAN and this is just another aspect that makes the film entertaining.
Benjamin Wadsworth (Your Honor) as Randell turns in a great performance throughout the film. He starts off weak and quickly takes control of the group of kids in the battle for their lives.
The third act really is where the fun begins, this is a unique take on the zombie genre and also the growing pains of being in High School. Patrick Melton & Marcus Dunstan really commit to the material they’ve written and it’s best to say this is not just another teen horror film, its heart lies in the direction and acting.
UNHUMAN isn’t going to change filmmaking, but it will entertain and give the audience a hell of a fun time with many little mysteries to unwrap. It is worth a view with friends, especially ones in or heading into their High School years. Also, stick around after the credits for even more fun.
The film will be available for digital purchase on June 3 from Paramount Home Entertainment