Tribeca Film Festival Review: Audience Award winner, ‘HERE ALONE’ wrenches a mother’s instinct.

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Being a new mom has had it’s toll on my brain. I’ve forgotten to eat. I’ve put the milk carton in the oven. I’ve gone days without showering or changing into socially acceptable attire. Being alone with an almost 4 month old baby all day makes your mind do/think weird things. Stir-craziness is very real. Isolation can ravage the senses. One the up side, this also means I have “a lot of time” (I know, I laughed as I typed that, too) to watch, or at least play films in the background. As a horror buff, I was excited about one film’s description in particular from this year’s Tribeca Film Festival Midnight Section, even if the plot sounded similar to ones that have cone before it. Like The Walking Dead, Rod Blackhurst‘s Tribeca World premiere HERE ALONE, is not about “zombies” but more about the people left behind.

After a terrible virus ravages human civilization, Ann finds herself living alone in a forest, foraging for supplies, and accompanied only by a radio that broadcasts a single transmission in French. Few animals even remain; the only survivors seem to be the roving hordes of infected creatures with a taste for human flesh. One fateful day, Ann crosses paths with two more survivors, Chris and Olivia. But after surviving on her own for so long, she struggles to relate to them and and their desire to settle down and start a new community.

here alone still chris and annAlmost entirely shot in the woods, our lead character Ann has only her vehicle and two small camps on a lake. Screenwriter David Ebeltoft’s immensely effective script, utilizes intermittent flashbacks to show us how Ann came to be on her own. Once traveling with her husband and infant daughter, the audience must allow themselves to be with Ann in the present in order to feel emotionally connected. She is smart and resilient. She has learned that practicality is the only way to survive. Her newly gained skills sometimes fumble, adding to the realism factor. The minute she allows her emotions to control her path, things are bound to go awry. When Ann stumbles upon Chris and his step-daughter Olivia, her motherly instinct may be her undoing. Two mindsets are at play; Stay put or keep moving. Which would you choose? Blackhurst’s use of nudity is never without purpose. There is no glamour factor here, which is much appreciated in the genre in general. Lucy Walters‘ lead performance is breathtaking. It’s not until the very end that we discover what happened to Ann’s daughter. That particular scene, which we know from the very beginning we’ve been building up to, is one of the most gut-wrenching I’ve seen on film. Maybe it’s the new Mommy hormones, maybe it’s Ebeltoft specifically crafted script, or maybe it’s the perfect storm of the two. I don’t think I have ever wept while watching a horror film until now. In a “what would you do?” scenario from hell, HERE ALONE tears your heart out and challenges how you think you’d react in a doomsday situation. When you’re down to your last bullet, it’s life or death.

HERE ALONE is one to catch. It may not necessarily be a new idea, but it is told from a fresh perspective. (Mothers be warned.)

Happy 15th Anniversary! TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL 2016 started today. Check out some of the films we’re excited about!


For such a new festival, only 15 years old, the Tribeca Film Festival is well known and becomes more attended every year with almost 500 screenings and over 467,000 attendees in 2015. The screenings take place at 5 different venues throughout lower Manhattan and represent over 40 countries.

“Over 400 films have been acquired after premiering at Tribeca. On average, more than half of available films find distribution within a year of their Tribeca premiere.”

Melissa and I are very excited about several movies this year, and we’d like to share which are on our lists. Here’s the top three for each, in no particular order. We’ll be sharing more day by day. We’ve already got a few interviews lined up and we’ll be tweeting and instagramming some of the unique experiences from the Tribeca Hub. Stayed tuned!

devil and the deep blue sea tribeca

The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

Based on Jason Sudeikis’ brilliant performance in last year’s Tumbledown, I’m excited to see him in another drama. Plus Maisie Williams AND a score by Justin Timberlake, what’s not to look forward to? – Liz


Women Who Kill

Sharp dialogue and an intriguing premise make this one of my favorites so far. – Melissa

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Don’t Think Twice

Having seen Mike Birbiglia’s comedy in person, his particular brand of humor is something everyone can relate to. Sleepwalk With Me was a Tribeca hit and if Ira Glass is producing your work, well that says a whole lot about the quality. – Liz

Here aloneHere, Alone

Remember those first few episodes of The Walking Dead when life was turned upside down and you watched people change? This movie captures that through the eyes of a young woman trying to survive. Less zombies, more humans = better story. – Melissa

High RiseHigh Rise

Tom Hiddleston and Jeremy Irons are at the helm of this breathtaking adaptation of the J.G. Ballard novel. Being familiar with Ben Wheatley’s other work, I was blown away by the colorful feast I was treated to. The entire ensemble cast is beyond stellar. Wrought with foreshadowing, both auditory and visual, from the music to the cinematic framing, High Rise is an incredibly cool and poignant commentary on class warfare. – Liz


I love a deep drama, and look forward to this story of a boy growing up in New York City. – Melissa

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