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TEotWaWKI Movie Review: Quarantine

directed by John Erick Dowdle, Quarantine, Non-Fiction


This is why it's not a good idea to hole up in an apartment building!

There is an interesting back story to this documentary. Historians who are researching the period just prior to World War Z have uncovered news footage of an outbreak that, at the time, appeared to have been quashed. I am stunned to learn that we could have faced much worse.

The lead is a reporter from a pre-SHTF TV station who was on assignment to follow a local fire company for a night. It was her crew's bad luck that their first real call was to an apartment block where a pre-cursor to Solanum had infected a human. This was a particularly virulent form of the disease as it zombified its victim faster and the zombie itself was much more agile. The recovered footage clearly shows how authorities quickly and effectively implemented a quarantine that protected the general population. The director tries valiantly to evoke sympathy for those contained inside, but it didn't work on me, given my hindsight. I would have nuked the area, just to be sure.

You must watch this movie, for it clearly shows who to trust and who to avoid. If you find yourself trapped in an outbreak, do not succumb to valiant inclinations unless they are to kill yourself in order to prevent further spread of the disease. Get a weapon, gather some supplies and find a place where you can wait out the event.

Oh, and you might want to watch this with all of the lights on. The speed of the undead will freak you out. Damn, only now has my heart slowed down.

There are spoilers after the jump.


The life cycle of this story is relatively short, but some of the key drivers occur outside of the story arc:

State of the Quarentine World
State of the Quarentine World

The Trigger

What is the trigger in this story? Is it the when the mad scientist successfully created the virus? Is it when that virus jumped from the lab rats to the residents of the building? Or when the call went out to the fire house?

The Outbreak

The vector of the disease is straightforward: You contract the disease, you die and then you rise again and attack any living human within sight, spreading the virus. You are as agile as you were prior to death. You feel no pain. The brain must be destroyed to kill the zombie. This is not that dissimilar to the mutation that lead to the World War Z. 


What the documentary fails to make clear is whether this outbreak was successfully contained and that Solanum was in independent disease vector, or that the disease jumped the quarantine and mutated into the form that dealt the consequences with which we are all familiar. One day, we will have the answer.