Horrorfest 2022 Presents: Sole Survivor (1984, Thom Eberhardt)


Despite being largely a slow burn, Sole Survivor is a well made slow burn with some fine creepy moments. Also it’s pretty obvious that Thom Eberhardt’s cult film inspired both The Final Destination movies and It Follows, which is neat. The flick also manages to be eerie and spooky as well, plus very moody. This would be a good fall movie, honestly.

Anita Skinner plays a woman who manages to survive a plane crash, yet she remains haunted afterwards. The doctor who treats her (Kurt Johnson, who is very likable) tells her it’s all in her head, then falls in love with her. Meanwhile literal zombies roam the city streets and proceed to stalk her in different ways. Is this death reaching out, or something more sinister at work? The movie doesn’t quite say, which is fine to me.

Gotta love those blue color schemes and those eerie late night streets.

Is there a grand conspiracy at work, or is it just people’s imagination? Caren Larkey is also great as a fading actress who claims to know the answers, and Skinner is perfect for the role. She makes us, the viewer, sympathetic to what she is going through. There is a shocking swimming pool scene, plus an unnerving moment on a staircase that really works. Is this a zombie movie or a supernatural movie? Perhaps it’s both, really? I’m not sure.

Between Sole Survivor and Night of the Comet, I really like what Eberhardt accomplished in the horror genre. I wish he had done more, yet he moved on to more general Hollywood fair. Which is fine yet also too bad since he appeared to have a knack for making reliable horror movies with sci-fi elements. Viewed thanks to Shudder, a service that happily offers up plenty of cult movies every now and then.

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