Warning: Contains major spoilers!
A family takes refuge in a fallout shelter to avoid a dangerous outbreak. The film stars Alexander Skarsgård (True Blood), Andrea Riseborough (Birdman), and Emily Alyn Lind (Revenge) as Zoe. Hidden is an American drama-thriller film directed and written by brothers Matt and Ross Duffer.
A very slowly paced burn at first, the film opens by showing a family being trapped in some sort of bunker. At first it seems as if they are hiding from something or, perhaps, someone. In fact, I thought that they could be harboring themselves from a zombie invasion or something. The chore of the film for the first hour and a half is putting up with the fact that the mother refuses to call her little girl by her name of Zoe, instead calling her "Zozo" throughout most of the film - which actually gets a little annoying.
The movie introduces Alexander Skarsgård as the father figure. Yes, it's kind of weird seeing him display anything other than his usual sexiness that we are so used to seeing in True Blood as Eric Northman, but it's nice to see him in a different light. Skarsgård's character keeps reminding his daughter about daydreaming, and how if she just does so, she can be any place and anyone that she wants to be in order to keep her calm while following a set of "rules" the mother has set. Keep that last bit in mind, it's essential near the end of the film.
With minimalist flashbacks of what really happened and talk of the family being haunted by supernatural beings called 'The Breathers,' the movie really starts sparking your curiosity as a viewer. You'll be engrossed with trying to figure out just what these things are and why they are after this particular family.
The movie goes on about its business, when suddenly they realize that nearly all of their canned food supplies have vanished. Allegedly, all thanks to a sneaky little rodent. When they finally do catch their main suspect, it's all just to find out that now half of their main food supply has gone missing. Now the pressure's really on with having to ration their meals so strictly. With being stuck in that bunker for about 300 days or so, I'd imagine they'd be down to their last meal quickly. Do they try to venture out into the world in order to hunt down some supplies? Nope. Instead they opt for staying inside the bunker, ultimately almost getting them incinerated in a fire - largely in thanks to our little rodent friend and his creepy doll sidekick, but, I'll let you watch the movie yourself for that one. The tightly enclosed bunker quickly becomes filled with ash, making the secret hiding spot now visible from the surface where the Breathers can see it. They try to clean the ash and smoke away to remain undetected like they had successfully done in the past... but it's too late.
The tension is definitely highest in the last 10-15 minutes of the film. The story has a great plot, but in my opinion, instead of wasting time on the rat or creeptastic doll, they could have built more out of the flashbacks, giving more focus on the origins of the unnamed virus that they are all hiding from. It would have been interesting to see how it spread from person to person, and how the rest of the surviving people came to live in the sewers. Watching the fall of the city transpire throughout the story would have been a nice touch, too.
For the most part, I really enjoyed the twist of them having a 28 Weeks Later-style infection and how they mastered controlling it. If they would have applied a bit more of a comeback story to the script, it would have been a superb film with a creepy twist that is so unique, you'd be haunted yourself but just barely falls short.
One thing is for sure: Hidden has great potential for a sequel!
Hidden is an engaging and thoughtful watch for any post-apocalyptic dystopian movie lover, so make sure you go rent it or snag it from a Redbox on your next night in!
Be sure to purchase your copy of Hidden on Blu-Ray and DVD today!
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