It is as much a gusty dissection of colonialism as it is a gut-spilling splatter-thon.
Stream Blood Quantum
What are people saying?
What are critics saying?
Barnaby’s colonialist take on the formula is far from subtle, and at times a little too bluntly on the nose, but he’s a film-maker with both something to say and the skillset to say it in a distinctive way, offering up an initially engaging alternative to mere guts and shock tactics.
I found myself admiring Barnaby’s editing and production skills—“Blood Quantum” looks great—but he’s not quite yet there in directing performances or writing dialogue. Everything here feels a bit too first draft or first take when the characters aren’t fighting off growling zombies.
It may not be a great zombie movie, but it’s a uniquely powerful reminder of why zombie movies are great.
Despite sufficient gore, there’s more style than bite to this undead opus, which does not excel at scares or action set-pieces.
Unfortunately, the film emulates many of its genre brethren’s inability to convert a promising start into a solid second act. . . . though a haunting finale almost redeems the flabby midsection.
Blood Quantum makes some important points, gives us stuff to care about and then drenches it all in audacious gore. And isn’t that exactly what we want from our zombie movies?
The effects, the gory makeup and what-not, are first rate, and the means of dispatching zombies creative, here and there.
A lot of people are going to judge the film based on its success as a horror movie, and others will judge it as a political statement. Not that I think there’s a deficiency in any part of its personality, but I also think the panache with which it is both of those things and more — without looking to the history of genre or the future of civil rights for permission to say some pretty bold stuff — is why the film is a success.
Blood Quantum is not short on social, and cultural observations, but neither does it scrimp on zombies gorging on lengthy intestines.