The Night Eats the World

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The Night Eats the World
Directed by Dominique Rocher
Screenplay by Jérémie Guez
Guillaume Lemans
Dominique Rocher
Based on Pit Agarmen (novel)
Starring Anders Danielsen Lie
Golshifteh Farahani
Denis Lavant
Sigrid Bouaziz
David Kammenos
Release date
  • 13 January 2018 (2018-01-13) (Festival Premiers Plans D'Angers)
Running time
94 minutes[1]
Country France
Language French, English

The Night Eats the World (also known as La nuit a dévoré le monde) is a 2018 French zombie film directed by Dominique Rocher.

Plot[edit]

Sam, a musician living in Paris, visits his ex-girlfriend, Fanny, to recover music tapes left in her possession. Fanny is holding a party and brushes Sam off multiple times. Fanny's new boyfriend tells Sam to leave and pushes him. Fanny tells her new boyfriend to leave Sam alone and tells Sam where he can find his tapes, and that she would like to talk to him later. On his way to get the tapes, Sam is accidentally bumped into by a random partygoer who is not watching where he is going. He makes his way to the end of the hallway to the room with the tapes. Once there, his nose starts to bleed from the collision with the partygoer. Sam finds some tissue to stop the bleeding. As he sits down and tilts his head back, he passes out. Perhaps due to the stress of the day and the nosebleed. Sounds of chaos erupt outside the door of the office, but Sam sleeps through it.

Awakening the next morning, Sam leaves the office to find the flat trashed, with blood stains on the walls and no one inside. He ventures into the stairway and discovers a zombified Fanny who charges at him when he calls her name. Locking himself in her flat, he witnesses through the windows the deaths of a family from the apartment across the street, who attempt to escape in their car. The flat, which is several stories up, is the only safe location Sam can find. The zombies have seemingly taken over all of Paris, are very fast moving, and respond in hordes to any sight or sound. They are also completely silent, making almost no noise and never vocalizing, making ambushes likely and it difficult to detect where they are.

Unable to leave the flat, Sam begins cleaning up until a shotgun blast erupts through the floor. Looking through the hole, he discovers the residents below committed suicide rather than face what was outside. Climbing through, he retrieves the shotgun. Venturing outside, Sam finds the zombies in the stairway gone, having departed after hearing people outside. He quickly closes the doors to the building and manages to seal himself inside.

Sam begins exploring the building's flats one by one. He finds most empty, but boards up the lowest with a family of zombies inside. He finds one other zombie inside the building's elevator, but it is a feeble, elderly man. Unable to kill him, Sam binds the gate to the lift up and begins conversing one sidedly with the zombie, whose name he learns is Alfred, for companionship.

Sam successfully raids the building for a large quantity of supplies. He rations these and discovers musical equipment in one room, which he uses to entertain himself. As time passes, Sam becomes increasingly lonely and unhinged. Desperate for company, he is nearly killed attempting to capture a stray cat wandering aimlessly among the undead, which don't seem to notice it. Enraged after it nearly gets him killed in the street, Sam shoots the cat from the window. Fearing he was bitten while trying to get the cat, Sam nearly kills himself a second time when he falls asleep with the shotgun placed beneath his head while waiting to see if he'd turn.

Sam begins having nightmares about the zombies managing to get in, but settles into a daily routine. As winter approaches, he is forced to contend with a lack of heat, and the water to the flat stops working. Surviving by collecting rain water and managing to create a fireplace, Sam's mental state continues to decline despite his best efforts. He notices one day that seemingly all the undead have left the streets. After wandering outside, Sam tests how far away they are by playing a drum set he found loudly while blasting music. The undead return in hordes and nearly manage to climb into the flat by piling atop one another. An enraged Sam continues to play despite the danger, his mind beginning to snap.

That night, Sam hears noises inside the flat and becomes alarmed. Hearing movement outside his bedroom door, Sam unloads the shotgun into the next room through the door. He hears cries of pain and realizes he shot another person that had managed to get inside the building. He attempts emergency medical aid and finds the woman's bag, which has a large amount of rope and a grapnel hook she uses to go from rooftop to rooftop.

The next morning, Sam speaks with the woman and she says her name is Sarah. She "meets" Alfred in the stairway, but her reaction is bizarre. She heads to the roof and accuses Sam of being too afraid to leave and says he'll die if he doesn't, or go mad from the isolation and repetition. Sam at first brushes her off, but eventually relents. He retrieves supplies from the lowest flat and kills the zombified occupants after finding his supplies diminished. Heading back to his bedroom, he realizes that he is hallucinating. Heading into the room, he discovers "Sarah" is actually dead from the gunshot wound he inflicted through the door; his attempts at saving her failed. Recognizing that his conversations with "Sarah" were self reflective, he mourns her loss and his mistake by covering her body and giving her a eulogy with candles. Discovering her camera in her bag, Sam finds pictures of a family the woman had before the outbreak, and pictures of a zombie outside their house.

Sam decides to leave the apartment, burning the tapes he originally came for and releasing Alfred, who wanders into a nearby flat, where Sam locks him away. A fire alarm goes off due to Sam burning the tapes, and zombies attack the building. Due to the amount of noise, more and more come until the doors collapse and the zombies rush inside. Sam runs and hides and manages to get to the roof. Once there, he swings across the street to the next building, where he climbs to the rooftop and stares out into the seemingly endless skyline of Paris.

Reception[edit]

On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 75% based on 19 reviews, with an average rating of 7.2/10.[2] On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average rating of 49 out of 100, based on 9 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[3]

The Hollywood Reporter wrote, "Imagine 28 Days Later without the action, The Walking Dead without the ensemble cast or [Rec] without the video camera and white-knuckle suspense, and you'll get an inkling of what goes on in The Night Eats the World (La Nuit a devore le monde).[1] IndieWire said, "Night Eats the World embarks on a complex meditation that makes it the most innovative zombie movie since Edgar Wright's Shaun of the Dead."[4] Variety wrote, "Even within the fairly small number of movies about a lone (or nearly-alone) survivor facing some endless apocalyptic or purgatorial non-future, “Night” is short on ideas."[5] Alex Hudson of Exclaim! praised the film's unique approach to the zombie genre, writing, "It's fascinating to watch the small ways in which Sam keeps himself entertained and builds himself a tiny life within the claustrophobic confines of the apartment building." [6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Mintzer, Jordan (7 March 2018). "'The Night Eats the World' ('La Nuit a devore le monde'): Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  2. ^ "The Night Eats the World (La nuit a dévoré le monde) (2018)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  3. ^ "The Night Eats the World Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  4. ^ Kohn, Eric (21 April 2018). "'Night Eats the World' Review: Here's the Most Innovative Zombie Movie Since 'Shaun of the Dead' — Tribeca". IndieWire. Penske Business Media. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  5. ^ Harvey, Dennis (22 April 2018). "Tribeca Film Review: 'The Night Eats the World'". Variety. Penske Business Media. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  6. ^ Hudson, Alex (September 19, 2018). "QCFF Review: 'The Night Eats the World' Breathes New Life into the Zombie Genre". Exclaim. Exclaim. Retrieved September 20, 2018.

External links[edit]