“A triumphant feat of dramatic horror” – Brad McHargue, DREAD CENTRAL
If you think you’ve seen all there is to see about zombies — think again. Exquisitely crafted, THE BATTERY breathes new life into this once stale subgenre with a whip-smart, epically subversive take on the undead narrative. Made with a microscopic $6000 budget, THE BATTERY does zombies like never before, and skillfully captures the in-between moments and bleak realities of a post-apocalyptic world.
Mickey and Ben have been on the road for an unspecified amount of time, eking out a nomadic existence of canned food and baseball practice in between bloody confrontations with stray zombies (or the “z-word,” as they’re fleetingly referred to.) Casual acquaintances and teammates in the pre-apocalyptic world, Ben and Mickey have forged a mismatched partnership and seem to rarely be in sync, despite being entirely dependent on one another for companionship and survival. Ben is a deceptively laid-back pragmatist charged with wielding the gun and the baseball bat that serves as their protection against the undead. Mickey, on the other hand, exudes a brooding vulnerability motivated by his deep-seated desire for a connection to the outside world and avoids all contact with the zombies, leaving the dirty work entirely to Ben. Meditative stillness gives way to lingering unease as the pair make their way haphazardly through the desolate wilds of an overgrown New England, beautifully captured by Christian Stella’s washed out cinematography. The tedium of teeth-brushing and the futility of a winning scratch card — not to mention one of the most awkward masturbation scenes ever put to film — deftly offsets the increasingly horrific clashes with the encroaching zombie population.
With a contemplative approach to the buddy genre reminiscent of the pervasive Americana and sun-drenched pastoral atmosphere of Kelly Reichardt’s OLD JOY, THE BATTERY is a rigorous exploration of human nature. Mickey and Ben are not the badass vigilante heroes you might expect in a zombie movie. They’re simply average guys running on the survival instinct found in every one of us. In the end, we all just want to put on our headphones, and spend our days listening to some fucking great music.
— Lindsay Peters