Director/Screenplay – Filip Maciejewicz, Producers – Berenika Bailey & Jeff Solema, Photography – Jessica Gallant, Music – Tom Jemmott, Visual Effects – Daniel Lomaas, Art Direction – Taylor Jean & Bridget Topp. Production Company – Magic Elevator.
Bo Linton (Jake Miller), Lara Hunter [Eugenia Kuzmina] (Arlene Balric), Nina Kate (Kim Harding), Kelsey Lin (Director Erin Reznor), Adrien Voo (Quentin Mayers), Dillaran Martin (Jared Quinn), Adia Dinh (Jenny Darcy), Timon Morales (Flynn Wilson)
The year 2017. An unknown virus has spread through the Los Angeles area, turning people into zombies. The whole city has been quarantined off. Jake Miller is the sole survivor of a military unit sent in. He finds Arlene Malric, a scientist who has vital information that can create an antidote. He agrees to help get her out to safety. They are joined along the way by a group of assorted other uninfected survivors. However, Miller’s superiors have not been honest and agency director Erin Reznor is seeking to sell the zombie virus to the highest bidder.
Quarantine LA was a debut film for director/writer Filip Maciejewicz. Maciejewicz subsequently went on to make the horror film Seventy-Nine (2013) and the non-genre adventure film Treasure Hunters (2015).
Quarantine LA is another Zombie Film. In recent years, there have been quite a number of films that lift the basics of Escape from New York (1981) and feature an individual or group of individuals on the other side of a quarantine crdon having to fight their way through zombie hordes – see the likes of Battle of the Damned (2013), Pandemic (2016), Transit 17 (2019), Redcon-1 (2018), Peninsula (2020) and Army of the Dead (2021). This is an earlier variant on the idea but one that conducts everything with little originality. Both Pandemic and Peninsula are far better variations on the same plot.
There is an oddball complement of characters, which have interesting potential – like the hardline soldier who balks at having a criminal in their midst – but nothing is done with them. In another cliché, the film has Kelsey Lin as the director of some ill-defined agency conducting deals to sell the zombie virus and a live specimen off to business-suited figures. In addition, one of the party inside the zone is a traitor who is trying to manipulate the situation to his advantage.
The film’s resources and the skill of the filmmakers is way below what is required to deliver this in any kind of interesting way. The directorial and camera set-ups feel flat and unengaging. Even more so, the zombies appear as a threat but hardly ever do anything – least of all mount much in the way of attacks on the principal characters.