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Clearly, there’s only one way to prepare for the impending end of days: watch as many post-apocalyptic movies as you can. The Perpetually Anxiety-Riddled Guy's Guide to Not Throwing Up on One's Self When Talking to a Girl You've Never Met! Snake Plissken is renowned for being one of the most popular anti-heros in cinema history.  The year is 1998 and as a result of huge crime rates, the United States turns the island of Manhattan into a maximum security prison where hardcore criminals are put for life. I'm Kai's bat shit crazy co-host on the MILFcast and he and Dylan, the hetero-life mates invited me over here at Man, I Love Films to write your Wednesday lists. The only downside, the image at the top reminds me that there is no sign of a UK release date for The Day yet. I started replying to this post with a few more suggestions but there were so many I decided to turn it into my own post. The amount of love for this movie makes me sure that I’ll dig it, but it is tough to find almost 3 hours to watch something that could be potentially depressing.
Secondly, we decided to take the term post-apocalyptic literally and not to include any films which deal exclusively with the lead up to an apocalyptic event or the event itself.
The same goes for The Matrix, a great dystopian science-fiction film, which is so far removed from our reality, it simply didn’t fit the criteria. After those perimeters had been established, we just set out to think of ten films which would fit them, whilst also trying to offer up an eclectic and varied bunch of movies from different eras and countries.
Whilst virtually all post-apocalyptic films are by their very nature a sub-genre of science fiction, some of the selected titles are trying to paint a highly realistic picture whereas others clearly take the more fantastical and spectacular route. The first of three serious feature film adaptations (I am not counting the 2007 Asylum produced I Am Omega) of the science fiction novel I Am Legend by Richard Matheson still remains the most interesting one. In a post-epidemic world in which the entire population of the planet has been transformed into creatures which are best described as vampires with a streak of zombie in them, Dr. The vampiric undead, however, are dimwitted slow creatures and Morgan goes out every night to kill and dispose as many of them as he possibly can. He manages to cure the woman by giving her a transfusion of his own blood and starts to hope that they can rebuild a normal society but Ruth’s group of semi-vampires has other plans. Secondly, it benefits greatly from having Vincent Price in the lead role, who gets to ham it up nicely as Dr.
Whilst tame and dated by today’s standards, The Last Man on Earth remains a wonderful oddity and arguably the grandaddy of all post-apocalyptic horror films which have followed since.
The story is set in a desolate post-apocalyptic landscape, after some sort of disaster has left the planet ravaged. After he finally manages to obtain the battery he needs to get his plane off the ground, he takes off and finds the remnants of a city. Being a very low budget affair, Le Dernier Combat probably was shot in black and white and without dialogue out of necessity but Besson manages to make these limitations work to his advantage. Le Dernier Combat also marked the first collaboration between Besson and Eric Serra, who would score the majority of Besson’s films throughout his career.
Based on the 1957 novel of the same name by Nevil Shute, and the first of two adaptations for the screen (the second one being an Australian television film produced in 2000), On The Beach is a post-apocalyptic drama and considered the first truly important entry in the genre. Set in 1964, which would have been five years in the future at the time the film was released, the world has been devastated by a nuclear war and all life on the northern hemisphere has been erased. The film follows submarine commander Dwight Towers (Peck) as he makes his way from Australia to the United States to investigate the source of Morse code which is being received from San Diego, only to find out that it’s caused by a Coca-Cola bottle tapping a telegraph key due to wind. A flawed film, On the Beach regularly becomes overly melodramatic and very heavy-handed but still manages to perfectly convey the bleak sense of desperate doom felt by those who are still alive, knowing that their end is near.
Ultimately these qualities overcome the less successful aspects of the film and it remains a powerful work, even 65 years after it was initially released.
The English language debut feature for Korean director Joon-ho Bong and his first international co-production, Snowpiercer is a slick looking science fiction film set in the not too far a future. After humanity and life on the planet have gone virtually extinct due to man’s meddling with the climate, the only survivors find themselves on a constantly moving hi-tech train, which circles the planet. Inside the train a class system has evolved, with the poor in terrible conditions stacked in the back of the train whilst being constantly oppressed by the rich, who live at the front of the train in luxury. A highly stylized and high concept film, Snowpiercer has a great international cast including Chris Evans, Song Kang-ho, Go Ah-sung, Jamie Bell, Ewen Bremner, John Hurt, Tilda Swinton, Octavia Spencer, and Ed Harris. Some of the wagons designs are simply fantastic and Joon-ho Bong manages to conjure up a few really nice set pieces. Based on the graphic novel of the same name by Raymond Briggs, When the Wind Blows is a British animated feature, dealing with the aftermath of a nuclear attack as experienced by an elderly couple in the United Kingdom.
James and Hilda Bloggs (voiced by John Mills and Peggy Ashcroft) are an elderly retired couple going about their daily routine in Sussex, England. Both James and Hilda are very simple and naive folk and fully expect that even if a war occurs, they will be able to survive, just like they did World War II, as long as they follow their government’s instructions. They go about their business in the days that follow, confident that help will arrive, but nothing happens and slowly they start to succumb to radiation sickness as their supplies start running out. A grim and bleak tale of nuclear destruction and its effects on ordinary citizens, not understanding its full consequences, When the Wind Blows is a dramatic animated feature quite unlike any other.
Featuring a soundtrack of some of England’s top musicians, including a title song by David Bowie, and a distinct visual style, in which various styles of animation are used, When the Wind Blows comes highly recommended for lovers of serious animation and dramatic post-apocalyptic tales.
If TV movies count, I’d add the magnificent, utterly depressing BBC drama Threads (Mick Jackson, 1984).
Le temps du Loup is great and so disturbingly realistic by just showing the consequences the societal breakdown has on human interaction. People here don’t seem to understand the difference between a dystopian future and a post-apocalyptic one. Five (filmed in 1951), is a very brave post nuclear explosion film for its time but is severely limited due to its low budget. Most people are familiar with post-apocalyptic films like Resident Evil, I Am Legend, and The Book of Eli. Think of the typical zombie movie and then replace the zombies with brainless, hungry vampires.


A simple yet remarkable story about a man and his son trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic world. A group of friends are trying to escape a highly contagious virus that causes anyone that comes in contact with it to die.
In the year 2016 the sun’s temperature has increased to the point in which it rarely rains and food sources are incredibly scarce.
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To build the list, I adopted a few rules (and somewhat arbitrary decisions):The movie should take place in the future (beyond the production date of the movie).
Based on the novel by Cormac McCarthy, The Road is exactly what a post-apocalyptic movie should be: dark, scary, and heavy on the cannibalism.
In a crime-ridden United States, the President’s plane crashes into the island of Manhattan, which obviously has been turned into a future-prison complex.
Bad news: we’re living in a simulated reality created by sentient machines who are harvesting our energy. Despite Mel Gibson being a cuckoo clock lunatic, the Mad Max series are the best post-apocalyptic movies of all time.
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All the bridges leading into the city are mined, a large wall is built along the shoreline and a large police force army is based there to stop or kill any attempted escapees.
This tells a story, another moment in time in a hero’s life that just happened to be captured along with great action, inventive new fight scenes, invigorating battles, and something altogether new and different in the science fiction genre.
I love what you have to say about 28 Days, Invasion of the Body Snatchers (so freaking creepy), Children of Men, and (above all) 12 Monkeys.
In order to post comments, please make sure JavaScript and Cookies are enabled, and reload the page. First of all, we decided to focus on films which deal with the survival of a greatly diminished population after an apocalyptic event and not to include movies which deal with more or less functional rebuilt societies after such an event. This explains the omission of for instance Children of Men, which otherwise would more than likely have been included. The first Planet of the Apes, in which it only becomes apparent that we are dealing with earth in the final moments of the movie, is a prime example of this. And finally, we have not included films produced for television, hence the omission of films like Testament, Threads or The Day After. Some of these titles will be extremely well known and obvious choices, whilst other will hopefully be less expected and possibly even completely unknown to the reader.
Either way, we hope that there’s a good suggestion or two to be found for everyone in these ten post-apocalyptic goodies.
1971’s The Omega Man is simply atrocious, and whilst the 2007 Will Smith vehicle I Am Legend had its merits, it suffered from dodgy CGI, a terrible ending and of course Will Smith, who can not compete with the awesomeness which is Vincent Price, the protagonist in The Last Man on Earth. First of all, it is a low budget affair which, instead of playing it for thrills, focuses on the isolation and the loneliness resulting from being the last of one’s kind. First of all it was the directorial debut for Luc Besson, who was only 24 years old at the time, as well as the acting debut for Jean Reno, who would go on to star in various other Besson vehicles.
An unnamed isolated character (Pierre Jolivet), simply referred to as “The Man” in the film’s credits, spends his time scavenging parts to build an airplane, in the hope of finding civilisation and a female somewhere.
There he is attacked by “The Brute” (Jean Reno) but manages to make his way into a barricaded hospital, where a doctor, who has also been terrorised by the brute, has been holed up.
The cinematography is great and the lack of dialogue give this movie a unique and surreal feel. The film and Besson won Best Picture and Best Director awards at various international festivals and the movie was also nominated for Best First Feature at the Cesar Awards in France.
The film was a major Hollywood production and starred Gregory Peck, Ava Gardner, Fred Astaire and Anthony Perkins. The only place still habitable for the time being is Australia, although air currents will shortly also deliver the radio-active fallout there.
Whilst people are being given suicide pills to avoid the long suffering caused by radiation, Towers spends his last days with Moira (Gardner), an alcoholic woman he is in love with, Julian Osborn (Astaire), a scientist, and the young couple of Peter and Mary, who are expecting a child as well as being in denial about the fate which looms over everybody. It’s also the oldest film on this list and the first, during the height of the cold war and nuclear paranoia, to address the topic of nuclear devastation directly and unflinchingly. The film was nominated for two Academy Awards, five Golden Globes and won director Stanley Kramer the BAFTA UN Award. The film is based on a French graphic novel by Jacques Lob, Benjamin Legrand and Jean-Marc Rochette called Le Transperceneige and as opposed to many films in this genre, the world here has became a frozen wasteland. As a result of an experiment to reduce global warming years earlier, outside there is nothing but ice, snow and freezing winds.
Something has got to give and soon Curtis (Chris Evans) leads his people from the rear of the train in a revolt, trying to make it to the front where the all important engine is situated. Whilst sometimes pushing the boundaries of the suspension of disbelief, there is plenty to make up for this in terms of visuals, ideas and cast.
A must see for science fiction enthusiasts and a great recent addition to the genre, which manages to feel fresh. Certainly not an animated feature made for the little ones, When the Wind Blows is powerful and dramatic stuff. As the international situation worsens and it becomes apparent that a nuclear war with the Soviet Union is approaching, James starts making preparations as per the instructions of the government. When the war actually starts, they hide in their shelter, only to come out a few days later to find that all communication and utilities have been turned off. Whilst the couple are portrayed as overly simple folk, naive about nuclear war and even nostalgic about some of their experiences in World War II, the film does hit home after the nuclear attack actually occurs and does not shy away from taking things all the way to their grim end.
Now, a dystopian future may precede the post-apocalyptic one but not always– it could also follow it (like in Akira).
Now, Akira is an example of a dystopic future which resulted after a post-apocalyptic event.
Adapted from the 2006 Cormac MCarthy novel of the same name, Viggo Mortensen stars as a father who is trying to teach his son (Kodi Smit-McPhee) the rules for survival in the wasteland they now live in.


The story unfolds as brothers Brian (Chris Pine) and Danny (Lou Taylor Pucci) try to keep their group safe from numerous obstacles that they come in contact with along their route to possible salvation.
Survivors must cover up almost every part of their body if they decide to go outside during the day and don’t wish to burn to death. We have evolved ever since now providing content in written news and reviews, photography, video, and podcasting of everything geekie! It can take place before the apocalyptic event, if part of it takes place after the apocalyptic event.
It centers on a dilapidated French apartment building where the landlord lures victims to sell them for meat, which is in extremely short supply.
Note: Zombie movies were not included, but let’s be honest, we all know this thing is going to end with some brain-eating. Upon a terrorist attack on his plane The President ejects and escapes only to find himself in the middle of the prison.  Ex-soldier Snake Plissken is offered his freedom if he goes in. It also gave us a situation where massive animals can live indefinitely in hibernation, and the male wakes up first, but it’s all the females that are killing us, and there’s only one male, so why are there females around now?
Most of those we would actually classify as dystopian films anyway and hence movies like Akira or Things to Come also haven’t been included. He somehow has proven immune to the disease after having been bitten by a bat in Panama years earlier. Secondly it is shot in black and white and because people have lost the ability to speak the film has basically no dialogue during its 80 minute run-time. In the meantime he is also battling a gang of thug survivors nearby who are led by a man in a white suit.
The doctor also has a woman locked in a cell, which pleases the man immensely as he has been looking for a female all this time. It also leads to one poignant scene where the only word in the entire movie is spoken after the man and the doctor have developed a friendship whilst being holed up in the hospital. The film features various styles of hand-drawn animation, stop-motion animation and even mixes in some real0life footage.
A post-apocalyptic future is the result of a major event that has either obliterated the majority of the population or has rendered the earth uninhabitable and deals with the remaining humans’ survival after said event. It stars Connor Paola as Martin, a teenager who has just lost his entire family to vampires and Nick Damici as Mister, the no-holds-bar vampire hunter who saves him. Taking place in the United Kingdom, Clive Owen stars as Theo, a former activist who is asked by his estranged wife Julian (Julianne Moore) to escort the last pregnant woman to safety. There are outstanding performances throughout by a cast of A-Listers including Charlize Theron, Guy Pearce, and an almost unrecognizable Robert Duvall. Bobby (Piper Perabo) and Kate (Emily VanCamp) round out the female portion of the group and strive to help the brothers in any way that they can. Pirates led by Dennis Hopper, jet skis, people with gills, sea monsters, Jeanne Tripplehorn’s butt, what else does a movie need?
Wait, why didn’t they make the future prison somewhere other than the greatest city on earth? We’re still not entirely sure if this is a post-apocalyptic movie, or if France is just really, really strange. When the world ends in December, if we don’t see some feral children using boomerangs as weapons and a bondage-themed biker gang, we will be sorely disappointed. He agrees but the complications are many, even though his robust bravado is without question undeniable.  This is a great science fiction action film that shows where man kinds violence will eventually lead them. Romero, who has publicly acknowledged the novel as part of his inspiration, when he conceived zombies for Night of the Living Dead. War between the government and rebels surrounds every move that Theo makes as he carefully tries to hide the pregnant woman from those who want the baby for their own greed.
This is an unflinching, sometimes hard-to-watch tale of what humans might have to do in order to carry on in a world without hope. The film is a realistic take on what could happen if this type of virus actually existed in our current world and what we would have to do in order to escape it.
This German film plays to its post-apocalyptic strengths and includes cannibals and violent nomads throughout. I try to see every movie that I can (new and old) as well as play the latest XBOX 360 and PS3 releases. And the creatures in The Last Man on Earth sure stumble around like Romero’s zombies would do a few years later. Stake Land breaks new ground with the vampire genre and stays as far away from the typical vampire film that Hollywood likes to portray. If any one thing leaves a lasting impression on the viewer it has to be the incredibly long and marvelous takes. The entire film is in German so if you rent it on Blu-ray or DVD you can either watch it with subtitles or listen to it dubbed in English. TV series, anime, shorts and animated movies will be included in different lists (with very few seminal exceptions such as Akira)Quality: I haven’t watched all of them!
We must have missed the part in Sunday school about fighting sentient computer programs in slow motion. All you need to know about this one is that it features Tina Turner, a midget riding a giant, and some sweet jazz saxophone. One such take lasts a little more than 7 minutes and has Theo running through an intense battle where bullets and explosions envelop his every step. Fun fact: John Carpenter wrote the movie as a reaction to Richard Nixon’s Watergate scandal. If you want to sort the list by other criteria, check my complete Post Apocalyptic Movies list at the Internet Movie Database (IMDB).Enjoy the treasure hunt!



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