Guest Review: Mutants by Mansion of the Macabre


Written and Directed by David Morlet
Starring: Hélène de Fougerolles, Francis Renaud and Dida Diafat
OUR RATING 2.75/5.0 CTHULHU'S

SPOILER ALERT

Our first entry into Disturbing Film's Zombie Week '12 is the 2009 French Language Film, Mutants. As the film starts, we find a woman fleeing in terror in a snowy mountainous landscape. She is covered in blood and is crying hysterically. We do not get a good glimpse of whom or what is chasing her. She runs into a highway where she is violently and gorily smashed by a speeding ambulance. We then meet the four passengers of the medical unit, Sonia (Hélène de Fougerolles), Marco (Francis Renauld) and a soldier named Perez (Marie-Sohna Condé), as well as an unidentified victim whom has apparently been infected by the virus. All I know about the virus is that it has consumed the majority of the population. (I only know this because of the written prologue at the beginning of the film).

I immediately feel confused and lost, because the film has the feeling that it started in the middle; I wish I knew more about the virus or where it came from. I can only assume that this is the French version of "The Rage" virus. The victim begins to seize and splatter blood, so Perez orders Marco to pull the Ambulance over so she can put a bullet in the victims brain. It is here that we learn Marco and Sonia are husband and wife, and they have picked up Perez somewhere so that they can gain access to a secret Military base to flee the spread of the virus. Marco admits that he does not trust Perez, but Sonia assures him that they need her. When the ambulance runs low on fuel they stop at an abandoned fueling station to refuel but discover there is no gasoline to be had. When the three explore the station Perez is attacked by a young boy, she attempts to defend herself but Sonia says the boy is autistic and not infected. Here a very confusing gun battle takes place and Perez and the boy are murdered as well as Marco being shot. (If this review seems confusing, it is because I had the same discombobulating feeling in the viewing. The film feels very strung together without rhyme or reason at certain points.) 

Finally, the story slows down to a more understandable and enjoying pace as Sonia finds a large abandoned building in the wilderness. Is it a hospital? A hotel? I do not know. Though it is here she attempts to cure Marco's gunshot but tragically discovers that he has become infected. As the disease spreads and Marco slowly transforms into a Zombie he begs his wife to put him out of his misery. Sonia explains that she believes the virus can be cured because she was bitten by one of her patients two weeks earlier and believes that she is immune. She attempts a blood transfusion but it only makes Marco worse. Finally she gives in and puts Marco's misery to rest by injecting him with a heart stopping serum. Though instead of disposing of the body, she locks it in a cooler in the basement. After losing Marco she attempts to radio help but instead of rescue she invites trouble with a group of gun toting criminals. Undead hell eventually breaks loose when a swarm of zombies over runs the hospital killing everyone in site. 

The film had great potential, because I felt the love story between Marco and Sonia was original but it lacked great writing leaving the viewer confused and irritated. That said, the cinematography was beautiful, and the zombie effects as well as the makeup were fantastic. The final moments were edge of the seat. If you are a Zombie genre fan I would recommend it, but if you're looking for serious thrills and suspense I would look elsewhere.

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