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COMPANION (2021)

Directed & written by John Darbonne.
Starring Anna Flynn, Marcus Anthony, Russell Shealy, Eric Hanson, Stephen Brodie, Cody Renee Cameron, Aedan Darbonne, Krystal Garcia, Dawson Darbonne, Victor V Gelsomino, Hayden McLelland, Christine Nguyen
Find out more about this film here!

Ella (Anna Flynn) and her husband Gus (Marcus Anthony) are trying to survive the end of the world. It’s your typical apocalypse where most of the population are dead, laws and authority are gone, and the real enemy are the survivors doing everything they can to save their own skin. The difference is that the world has been taken over by some kind of ghosts or companions, as they are referred to, who linger around the area where they’ve been killed and are able to be tangible enough to murder and beat the crap out of others.

At least, that’s what I’ve gathered from COMPANION. The film doesn’t really make the cause of these companions clear and plays fast and loose with the rules of what they can and cannot do. This is because the focus is on the survivors and not the monsters, which is basically what Romero did with zombies all those years ago. Still, even though these monsters aren’t flesh eaters, the survival aspect remains and boiled down to basics, this is a film we’ve all seen before.

That said, I really like the look of the companions. They’re black and white creatures who skip in and out of reality in a staccato fashion, giving them ample opportunity to pop in and out of frame for a jump scare. The creatures apparently feed on fear, so this popping out of nowhere helps fill their bellies as it scared the shit out of their victims and worked a few times on me.

COMPANION is a low budgeter with big world-ending ideas, but spends most of its time wandering around forests and junkyards to make the world look like a sparsely populated landscape. While the acting is not the best from everyone in the cast, the true standout is Anna Flynn as Ella. She’s quirky and spunky. Extremely likable and impulsive. She’s also very easy on the eyes and while the scene where she takes a bath with a dog made my skin crawl, the film really shines when Flynn is on screen.

Apart from the monsters being ghost-like creatures, COMPANION is a pretty run of the mill survival flick. I could have used a little more clarity of what the companions actually were and a little less angst from the leads. COMPANION also becomes somewhat redundant because it starts and ends at the same farm, but there is a reason for this loop the course of the film takes. The story’s point is a bit foggy though as it asks some very tough questions of how relationships evolve in times of crisis. I applaud the film for tackling such a sophisticated and adult theme, but I don’t know if it achieves the poeticism it reaches for, but COMPANION manages to be absolutely watchable because of it’s lead, Anna Flynn. See COMPANION for her performance.

Check out the trailer here!!