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“YESTERDAY shows that the genre's core values—effective use of a small budget, an intelligent look at humanity, and of course a bit of horror— are still taken seriously by some film makers out there” — Ben Austwick, QUIET EARTH
Director: Rob Grant
Screenplay: Rob Grant
Cast: Graham Wardle, P. Lynn Johnson, Bill Murdoch, Mike Kovac
Producers: Scott Mainwood
Distributor: True Hype
2009 | 13 min
Yesterday was the last day that the world made any sense. Today, a good deal of humankind may very well be on the verge of extinction, as what was initially thought to be a new strain of flu virus has turned into something far, far worse. Something that kills, then resuscitates its victims as homicidal, cannibalistic carriers. As society falls first into panic, then into pieces, an unlikely group of people from across a suburban Canadian town band together in a last-ditch effort to see tomorrow, come bloody hell or even bloodier high water.
A gritty zombie film with strong scripting chops, this is The Little Indie That Could—a doggedly determined beast that, in spite of being made on a production budget of an impossible $12,000, with an all-in final cost just shy of $25,000 (Canadian!), was nonetheless shot on 16mm film and features tons of crunchy, splatterific make-up effects, stunts, a car crash, the whole nine yards. And you can feel the fight in every frame—almost every take you see in the film was the first and only one shot. Performances range from terrific to awkward. The vintage cameras they worked with broke down multiple times. In fact, five different cameras were used—and broken—during the making of this film, including an old hand-cranked Russian rig. At one point, additional actors were needed as extras in a classroom scene, so the film's sound mixer took a seat as a student behind a desk—and can clearly be seen dialling the audio of the take during the shot! None of these things backfire against the film. Instead, they take on the validating personality of battle scars, proof that the project defeated adversity to come tearing out of a very difficult place, not only surviving to tell the tale, but doing so with spirit and flair. Because, in spite of its rough edges and inconsistencies, YESTERDAY is a very enjoyable film that's been getting solid play on the international festival circuit, even picking up the odd award along the way. It's a damn inspirational, do-it-at-all-costs debut from a pack of filmmakers we'll doubtlessly be hearing more from. Smash a camera against a wall and raise your glass to them.