Train to Busan (2016) by Yeon Sang-ho

Train to Busan is a South Korean zombie thriller that uplifts an average plot through exciting action, tense scenes and convincing performances.

The story follows a fund manager accompanying his daughter to his estranged wife when the train they are on is taken over by aggressive, blind zombies. Now he, with the help of a few other key people, must try to survive and get the train to Busan, apparently the last city still standing.

The film manages to make this journey interesting by giving us well-rounded characters that are diverse in their origins and skillsets but unified in their motivations. It also makes good use of its setting by letting the moving train create a sense of momentum as well as confinement. The moments it does slow down give the audience a chance to breathe and get to know the characters. Only an hour and forty-five minutes long, the film manages to pack in a lot of great action scenes, that range from straight-up combat, to survivalist horror.

Strengthening the case for the film is its exploration of humanity in crisis. We get to see the best and worse of humanity and all the shades within. I shall not spoil what these are or how they are depicted except to say that the film takes full advantage of its apocalyptic setting.

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