Genres: Zombie, Horror, Post-Apocalyptic. Barnaby’s colonialist take on the formula is far from subtle, and at times a little too bluntly on the nose, but he’s a film-maker with both something to say and the skillset to say it in a distinctive way, offering up an initially engaging alternative to mere guts and shock tactics. In Blood Quantum, a grim Canadian B-move that drew praise at last year’s Toronto film festival, writer-director Jeff Barnaby tells a familiar tale through the eyes of an indigenous community in the early 80s. Blood Quantum is now available on Shudder, Your support powers our independent journalism, Available for everyone, funded by readers. A community who have been diminished and abused are now back in control of the land that was always theirs and they must decide how to treat the outsiders and what dangers they’re willing to risk. Despite its flaws, it’s a promising film with some great ideas—and that alone should satisfy Shudder subscribers. Not only is the standard trope in most classic Westerns of hordes of faceless Indians subverted by the fact that all the zombies are white, but the historic treatment of indigenous people by white settlers provides understandable motivation for the nihilistic Lysol to want to deny white refugees entry to the compound. BLOOD QUANTUM Review – A Rebellious Take on the Zombie Subgenre by Jerry Smith April 28, 2020, 11:30 am Starring Michael Greyeyes, Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers, and Forrest Goodluck in 2019 and is currently streaming on Shudder in the U.S., U.K., and Ireland. I found myself admiring Barnaby’s editing and production skills—“Blood Quantum” looks great—but he’s not quite yet there in directing performances or writing dialogue. Sadly, some of the elements of “Blood Quantum” feel distractedly unrefined, including poor performances and awkward dialogue. It’s best taken as a violent slab of late-night exploitation, made notable by a powerful conceit and some evocative visuals. In this way, Barnaby’s film rejects the default white gaze of so many horror films, choosing to tell a story through … Reading Time: 4 minutes. The first third of “Blood Quantum” is tight and grisly, featuring several buckets of blood and well-produced action. It’s almost as if Barnaby made that half-hour as a short film and then realized he had to fill out the rest to feature length. On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 90% based on 89 reviews, with an average rating of 7.17/10. In the film’s opening stretch, we see the Mi’kmaq people of Red Crow grapple with a gruesome outbreak before events leap forward six months and we see how their lives have then radically changed. Director Jeff Barnaby Starring Michael Greyeyes Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers Forrest Goodluck UK release date 01 May 2020. Although, to be honest, Blood Quantum often works a little more like 30 Days of Night and Stakeland – both vampire films that riff on zombie tropes—but the filmmaker utilizes Romero when it makes sense. Back in the 60s, and at rare times since, the zombie subgenre has been used as a way of sneaking social commentary into horror, the set-up of an invading force destroying a community allowing for a range of sly metaphors. It’s tightly written and efficiently told. Blood Quantum Review. Blood Quantum is the term given for how much of a particular type strain of DNA you have, (European, NA native, etc), and it seems like the implication is that only those with a substantial amount of native DNA are immune to this virus. After all, we’re all stuck inside, questioning the health levels and intent of the people on the other side of the door. Blood Quantum (Movie Review) ... Jeff Barnaby’s Blood Quantum is that special kind of speculative fiction. The first act of the film, as the “zed” illness becomes apparent, is great. All rights reserved. Sadly, some of the elements of “Blood Quantum” feel distractedly unrefined, including poor performances and awkward dialogue. Facebook Twitter Flipboard Reddit Pinterest WhatsApp. REVIEW: Blood Quantum (2020) 05/05/2020 0 The indigenous peoples of North America, Australasia and other areas of the world are one of the most under-represented groups in popular culture. ‘Blood Quantum’ Review: Indigenous Canadian Zombie Movie Bites Into Colonialism "Blood Quantum" may not be a great zombie movie, but it’s a uniquely powerful reminder of why zombie movies are great. Well, not yet anyway. Read our Blood Quantum review here! Blood Quantum review: Indigenous zombie thriller brings guts and politics. The effects are awesome and the twists make this well-worth watching. Given how movies about the undead refuse to die, a tweak on what’s become a decaying formula is always a welcome surprise, especially if said tweak involves a little more than “what about zombies but strippers”. Barnaby wastes no time getting to the good stuff. The disagreements within the tribe of survivors and family members are often underdeveloped, feeling like the kind of thing that would set up better for a pilot for a spin-off to the AMC hit than they do here. When fisherman, Gisigu (Stonehorse Lone Goeman) uncovers an outbreak on the isolated Mi’gMaq reserve of Red Crow he brings his community together so that they can be prepared for the repercussions. Last modified on Wed 29 Apr 2020 08.11 BST. The fragile new community that’s been created is made up of the immune Native residents and others who they have saved. The nifty twist here is that those who are First Nation residents are immune while the white people around them are not. There’s also a nicely etched, if underpowered, tension between a son who resembles his father before he reformed himself and a son who resembles his father’s newer self, with both sides wrestling for dominance, both mentally and physically. The words take on even more provocative implications as the title of Jeff Barnaby's sophomore feature, which grimly depicts an apocalyptic scenario where in an isolated "Mi'gmaq" … The clever twist is that the tribal members discover they are immune to bites of the undead. Blood Quantum operates from a place of tribal identity and that no white audience members will truly be able to understand. 06 May 2020. It screened at the Toronto International Film Festival (T.I.F.F.) grimy zombie horror offers intriguing twist A visually distinctive, semi-effective Canadian thriller pits a First Nation community against a zombie invasion A still from A zombie film that also comments on our abuse of the planet and treatment of indigenous people is a brilliant idea, and it’s easy to see why TIFF chose this to open their Midnight Madness program last year. Blood Quantum takes place almost entirely on the Canadian Mi’gmaq reserve of Red Crow in the early 1980s.As is necessary for a zombie movie, the dead are coming back to life. Everything here feels a bit too first draft or first take when the characters aren’t fighting off growling zombies. Set in 1981, Blood Quantum wastes no time getting things started, jumping to Old Gisigu (Stonehorse Lone Goeman) fishing, only to discover something is horribly wrong: the fish aren’t staying dead. A zombie film that also comments on our abuse of the planet and treatment of indigenous people is a brilliant idea, and it’s easy to see why TIFF chose this to open their Midnight Madness program last year.