What is it about zombies that infatuate the general public? They’re stupid, decomposing, cannibals which cannot be killed (not to mention their bad body odor); yet they saturate the air waves and the big screen, and come up with some big viewing number to boot. When I rented the science fiction movie “The Last Days on Mars” I thought I might be able to get a two-hour reprieve from zombie-mania. But noooooo…Zombies are on Mars also.
We’re not really sure what year it is, but NASA apparently has not been totally obliterated. They have sent a small group of scientists and engineers on a six month mission to explore Mars for signs of life. Since recent exploration has discovered that Mars once had lakes containing water in them, the astronauts hope that a life form may be found is extremely high. But after the six months have passed without even a fossilized microbe to bring home, the group prepares to head home ─ or so we think.
One of the scientists has actually found a strain of bacteria and for some reason he decides to keep the information to himself. Under the guise of one last Mars walk, Captain Charles Brunel (Elias Koteas) grants the astronaut one last romp on the “Red Planet” and needless to say, things do not end up well. Vincent Campbell (Liev Schreiber), an engineer with claustrophobia (who becomes an astronaut if you have claustrophobia?) and a biologist, Rebecca Lane (Romola Garai), now become the main protagonist trying to figure out who is creeping around in the red dust.
What starts out as a potential sci-fy thriller, ends up in a silly outer space “The Walking Dead” episode. The highlight of the film actually comes in the form of a huge red dust storm that envelopes the home base, and from there, everything goes down the drain. Only rent if terminally bored.
My Rating: 2 of 5 Red Zombies.