The One Survivor Of Conifer is a post-apocalyptic thriller by Writer/Director Curt Dennis. What was initially intended as a crowd-funded short movie, Dennis and Producer Max Mir opted to make it a feature film after their campaign proved unsuccessful. Filmed in just 5 days and with only 11 crew members (including cast) the movie is a prime example of budget filmmaking.
Survival is tough when you think you’re the last person on Earth. From getting food, to water, to avoiding the Creatures lurking in the forest. But when Austin Biggs finds a child over his radio, he becomes more than just a vocal companion. Because if Austin can’t reach the child first – the Creatures will.
From the outset, the movie gives off some strong Castaway vibes. The main difference is instead of a tropical island, it’s London. Instead of Wilson the volleyball, it’s a teddy. Instead of Tom Hanks, it’s Johnny Maya. Yet, despite being the only actor on screen throughout the movie, Maya’s likeable, charismatic approach keeps us intrigued throughout. Yes, the whole premise is very ambiguous, but we can surmise that there has been some sort of disaster which has killed off the human race and for some reason Austin Biggs is still alive and monsters are lurking.
Admittedly, there are a few issues which can’t go unmentioned. From a storyline perspective, Austin Biggs is certainly no Bear Grylls when it comes to survival. There’s no fire, no sanitisation of water and despite having access to a sheltered building, Biggs opts to sleep outside at the mercy of the elements (and the monsters but we’ll come to that later). There’s also the issue of poor audio at times. Yet, the movie does have a number of great qualities.
Maya’s terrific depiction of loneliness, isolation and wavering mental health is a testament to his versatility as an actor. This, coupled with the vocal contributions of Jonah Paull, is a great incentive to watch the movie to the end. Whilst the storyline has borrowed heavily from the likes of Castaway (talking to an inanimate object) and Bird Box (blindfold requirement to stay alive) the movie does have its own unique elements. The only material proof that there are monsters lurking is the purple goo, but Biggs’ conversations and drawings tease this out further. Director Dennis certainly works within his means. Rather than opting for poor, low budget effects, he utilises these aforementioned traits to convince us of the monster’s presence.
Overall, The One Survivor Of Conifer is worth a watch. However, if you’re expecting action or jump scares you’ll be severely disappointed. If you enjoy character-driven storylines that require you to use your imagination then definitely check it out!
Check out the movie’s IMDB page here
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