this horny teen counselor would be better off if a slasher-killer were stalking
his summer camp. It would give him more time to hook up. Unfortunately, fending
off a horde of zombies with a collective conscience will demand his full
attention. He understands this only too well because he was once part of the
titular Borg-like group-mind of David Yarovesky’s The Hive (trailer
which The Nerdist presented this Monday as a special one-night Fathom Event screening, in advance of a later VOD release.
is more notorious than he realizes for being the player of the camp. Katie is
pointedly unimpressed with his attempts to impress her, especially when his
clumsiness lands them both in the infirmary. However, a little time in close
quarters warms her to the idea of a bit of fooling around. In a case of super-bad
timing, they are interrupted by the crash of an apparent military aircraft.
Foolishly setting out to investigate with Clark and Jess, another camp counseling
couple, they find a really bad scene. Let’s just say there is a zombie-acting pilot
and puddles of black goo. Of course, they bring that contagion back to camp.
enough, the principle means of spreading the contamination is through
projectile vomiting to the face. Before long, all four get tagged, even Adam.
Yet, he seems to have somehow snapped out of it, judging from the film’s flashback
structure. On the downside, he seems to have lost his memory, at least in a
continuous narrative form. He gets flashes of the previous day, as well as bits
and pieces that seem to be other people’s experiences.
The Hive owes as much Cabin Fever as it does Night of the Living Dead, but Yarovesky
and co-writer Will Honley still put an intriguing spin on the viral-mutant
doomsday scenario. While completely apolitical, in contrast to Ladd Ehlinger Jr’s
sly, under-appreciated, thematically related Hive Mind, the individual versus the collective motifs greatly
enrich Yarovesky’s The Hive.
Basically, it is like Adam is stuck at a Bernie Saunders rally, except there is
slightly more black sludge vomiting, but only just slightly. In fact, the whole
mechanism through which he disconnects from the Hive is well thought out and
convincing. Still, it must be said, the staticky, rough-cut flash-forwards and
backwards get a bit tiresome after a while.
Basso and Kathryn Prescott are also surprisingly engaging as Adam and Katie.
They actually develop legitimately tragic romantic chemistry, which is something
you never expect to find in a teen zombie movie. The camp ground set also look
totally authentic, as it should. According to the pre-screening infotainment
slides, Yarovesk hired the facilities manager of his own childhood summer camp
to recreate its look. For the Fathom Events screening, Nerdist also produced
half an hour of special supplemental introductory matter, including a report
from the Mr. Wizard Nerdist on the swarming behavior of birds and insects that provided
some helpful context.
Hive has plenty of dark humor
and slimey grossness, but it also has heart and a bit of brains. That is a full
bill, really. Cult film connoisseurs need to catch up with it, so hopefully
Nerdist and Fathom will schedule an encore screening before its promised VOD
Labels: Fathom Events, Horror Movies, Nerdist, Zombies