Final Days begins with a familiar image: alone, trudging around his home, an ill man stares at the outside world. This is Aidan (Teen Wolf‘s Tyler Posey, himself), a tattooed yuppie who resides in a gigantic apartment. It even has a mezzanine. The sterility of his new-build block is soon disrupted, however, by a zombie invasion. “Screamers”, as Johnny Martin’s film names them, run fast, and savagely attack anyone not infected. It’s all been done before, but this time there’s the added recognisability of parallels with a Covid-struck world. Martin does little to exploit viewers’ fears or assumptions.
The film’s oddly-angled hero suffers through the knowledge that his loved ones are dying, while he is unable to leave his apartment. Martin can’t find of a more inventive way for Aidan to express his feelings than have him sit and monologue to a webcam. Around the halfway mark, he spies a pretty neighbour (Summer Spiro), whom he sets off to rescue. How dashing.
As the real world slowly emerges from its own locked-down nightmares, Final Days offers little appeal.
The images of hurried texts to loved ones who might be absent for a long time, of staying up watching the TV redeliver old news, of reliving memories in a suddenly isolated domestic space, are painful reminders of what the last year has taken away. But Final Days doesn’t do anything but reinforce suffering. It doesn’t seem necessary to explore the period through this genre framework, and there’s little catharsis to be found in eventually watching Aidan batter his way through victims of a virus, even if the stunts and action are fairly well performed. A last-minute cameo from the great Donald Sutherland cannot save the day either. Even with the blessed return of the rule of six, viewers of Final Days will end up wishing they had been left, like the original title of this film, Alone.