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Top 5 Post Apocalyptic Foreign Flicks

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Top 5 Post Apocalyptic Foreign Flicks

They’re all in English, so they’re not as foreign as you might think.  Particularly I’ve found that the Australians and British make some pretty great Post Apocalyptic or Dystopian movies.  These are my favorites, if you have any you think I should check out please let me know in the comments below.

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  1. These Final Hours: 2013

These Final Hours is one of the nuttiest post apocalyptic movies I’ve ever seen.  It takes place at mind bending speed and seemingly changes directions more times than you can count.  The premise is basic:  it takes place in Perth, Australia and begins about ten minutes after a meteor has struck the earth.  The television, radio etc. warns the characters they have about twelve hours to live.  The main character James finds out his girlfriend is pregnant, which sets him off on his way to the last/best party on earth.  James runs into a young girl named Rose who he takes under his wing to keep her safe from danger.  He promises to reunite her with his family.  After coming across some murder suicides and mass suicides, James and Rose end up at the party.  The party scenes are reminiscent of  Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and include all kinds of debauchery imaginable.  James and Rose eventually survive the party and go looking for Rose’s family and James’s girlfriend Zoe.  Everything in between the beginning and the end is a wild entanglement like you can never imagine. Watch in on Amazon Instant here.


  1. Blindness: 2008

Blindness is a Canadian/Brazilian film based on the Jose Saramago book by the same name.  Probably more Dystopian than Post Apocalyptic in nature, the story takes place in Sao Paulo, Brazil after nearly the entire population has come down with some sort of sickness that causes everyone to go blind.  As in many “outbreak” movies, we see the initial outbreak and spread of the disease in a chain of person-to-person contact.   What eventually becomes known as the “white sickness” spreads rapidly throughout the city and the government responds by setting up asylums for the blind.  The main character, played Julian Moore, is a the wife of doctor who sees some of the first patients of the white sickness. The doctor, played by Mark Ruffalo, ends up going blind himself.  While not also going blind, Moore’s character pretends to have the affliction to be able to stay with her husband and enter the asylum while maintaining her sight as a secret.  Eventually life in the poorly run asylum becomes reminiscent of any regular prison where the prisoners seem to have more power than the guards.  Rape, food hoarding, supply bartering, filth, sickness and gang culture are abound.  Outside of the prison, the government becomes more totalitarian and we see the sickness spread through all levels of society even to the highest levels of government.  Eventually Moore and Ruffalo’s characters end up outside of the asylum with a “family” of other blind people they’d taken on the responsibility to protect.  The scenes outside of the asylum are fantastically grim and a post-apocalyptic fans dream come true.  They remind very much of the early scenes of 28 Days Later, showing amazingly how powerful empty city streets can look.  Moore and Ruffalo’s characters lead their new band of survivors around the city looking for a safe haven for survival.  This film is a thought provoking twist on normal outbreak movies and dystopian themes. Rent it to watch on Amazon here.

  1. The Survivalist:  2015

The Survivalist is every fan of Post Apocalyptic genres dream come true. If you have ever pictured yourself surviving the end of the world as we know it, this is how you see yourself.  The Survivalist is a British film that takes place in the woods in Northern Ireland. Oil production has ceased, the economy has collapsed and the world population has been devastated.  The main character is the nameless Survivalist.  He lives alone in a small cabin in the woods and is incredibly adept at survival.  Finding no success in trapping animals, he harvests crops, forages berries and even grows seeds with his semen!  The Survivalist’s compound is guarded by a system of traps on its perimeter, but its security is silently breached when two women, one older and one younger, show up at his door.  As anyone would be, the Survivalist is very defensive of their presence and holds them at gunpoint and locks them in a closet in his cabin.  Eventually the older woman brokers an arrangement where she trades her daughter as a prostitute in exchange for shelter and food.  The three live together while secret plans, suspicions and double crossing develop unnoticed.  Eventually they find themselves protecting the compound from unwanted attackers and bands of thieves at the expense of the compound’s safety.  The British truly know how to produce the grimmest of settings that purely express what the collapse of society would really look like. The Survivalist’s powerful storytelling will satisfy anyone who holds an interest in seeing how a prepper might truly survive when his preparations are needed. Buy it via Amazon Prime here.

  1.  Rover: 2014

The Australians do it again, in freakishly fascinating style with The Rover.  The Rover is a modern western set in the Australian outback 10 years after a world economic collapse.  The outback has become a dirty, dry wasteland full of crime, poverty and lawlessness that is patrolled by small military outposts.  The main character Eric’s car is stolen and the movie follows his revenge-fuelled obsession to retrieve his stolen car.  Eric’s adventures across the outback bring him into some strikingly strange encounters that could only be found in the Australian outback.  He encounters dwarves, Chinese acrobats, opium dens, rogue surgeries, army arrests, surprise attacks and roving gangs.  Eric eventually gets his car back but it’s his motivation as to why he was so intent on getting his car back that really provides the payoff for the movie.  The Rover is characteristically Australian and the culmination of encounters Eric experiences could never happen anywhere else on the planet.  If you like the idea of adding the revenge aspect to your standard post apocalyptic scenes set in the Australian aspect The Rover will not disappoint. Watch it on Amazon Instant (for free if you have Prime) here.



  1. 28 Days Later: 2002

Another English movie, 28 Days Later is the quintessential modern zombie movie.  28 Days Later, directed by famed British Director Danny Boyle, saw the introduction of the “fast zombie” which has become a staple for many modern zombie flicks like the Dawn of the Dead remake, Zombieland, World War Z and the TV show Z Nation.  If you haven’t seen 28 Days Later you probably need your head checked but I’ll summarize just in case you’ve been living in a cave for the last 15 years.  Very much like the Walking Dead, the main character Jim wakes up in a hospital bed 28 days after the “rage-inducing virus” was released by some animal rights activists who release a chimpanzee who attacks his liberators who in turn spread the virus on the English population.  Jim wakes up and leaves the hospital to find the city streets of London empty.  In some of the most striking cinematography I’ve ever seen the barren streets of London fill Jim with a sense of confusion and bewilderment.  As he makes his way throughout the city the first infected Jim encounters is a priest.  Jim is eventually rescued by two survivors, named Selena and Mark, who fill him in on everything that happened during his time in the Coma.  Jim demands his new friends help him find his parents, who he discovers had killed themselves in his childhood home.  They travel around the city from safe place to safe place and eventually meet up with a Taxi driver and his daughter when they all decide to travel north to Manchester following instructions on a radio broadcast.  The group joins some soldiers living in a mansion with supplies and relative safety.  The soldiers intentions turnout not to be as genuine as the group had hoped and they must fight for their lives to escape.  The movie ends with the characters thinking every thing they thought they knew to be true wasn’t exactly what they thought it would be.  If you like 28 Days Later check out the sequel 28 Weeks Later to follow the characters beyond the initial outbreak and into long term survival.  There’s rumors of a third installment titled “28 Months Later” but I wouldn’t bet the farm on the reality of it’s impending existence. Rent it on Amazon or watch for free on Amazon with a 30-day HBO trial.

Todd Olsen

    My name is Todd Olsen, I'm a teacher in Massachusetts but I was born in Pittsburgh and grew up in Richmond, Virginia. When I'm not hunting down post-apocalyptic fiction i'm spending time with my wife and baby, traveling vehemently, playing hockey and soccer, hanging with my friends, hiking with my dogs and riding/repairing motorcycles.

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