The Returned (2013) Review

the returned 2013Synopsis: The zombie apocalypse is under control, sort of. If the virus is caught within the first several hours, a protein may be able to save the infected and let them lead normal lives, so long as they take a dose every day.

When the national supply runs low, however, and scientists are behind in developing a synthetic version, tensions between hate groups and “The Returned” rises. Kate (Emily Hampshire) and her Returned love, Alex (Kris Holden-Ried) are faced with a tough decision.

Leslie’s Review: I wasn’t expecting much going into this one, but it’s a surprisingly well-done movie. The pacing is on point with top-notch thrillers, and I took particular notice of the dynamic camerawork. The opening sequence gives the audience a solid background of both humanity when the zombie plague hit as well as a look into the young life of our main character, Kate. It’s terrifying, but not in the typical, horror zombie fashion.

The writers could have easily substituted any affliction with the zombie virus. At its core, this film is a heart wrenching thriller about human nature. It’s a sociological look at how we treat others in a crisis. Some step up and show complete kindness and courage while others take a more self-serving attitude and opt for survival no matter the cost to others. Typical of post-modern horror, the zombies aren’t the monsters, sure they snack on a few people when they turn, but the humans are the real villains.

I appreciate when filmmakers take a genre film and give it a little more substance, and I think that screenwriter Hatem Khraiche and director Manuel Carballo have made a powerful commentary for those who feel trapped between two worlds and isolated from both. It premiered at the Sitges Film Festival in Spain last year but has since been making its way across the globe. It’s worth an hour and forty minutes if you come across it.

Director: Manuel Carballo

Origin: Spain, Canada

This post was originally written by Leslie Shaip. You can follow her rants and movie reviews on her blog: Gallimaufry


  1. It’s a very interesting film. The zombie film archetype has been transformed in recent times from exotic islands and voodoo related themes to bio hazzard, bio terror and generaly into a world disaster senario.

  2. I thought it was a refreshing take on the genre. Although the parking lot scene is a little out of place she practically holding a sign that said i have the last dose of medicines come mug me . On a side note this would make a perfect prequel for the Deadrising video game series. Well Done !

  3. Couldn’t agree more with David Marshall, this would fit perfectly if the title were “Deadrising”!

    What got me was how thought provoking it was, it really got me thinking about the complication of controlling something like a zombie outbreak.

  4. It’s definitely been cool watching the genre transform and become more than just monsters, gore and death. The psychological aspects are way more interesting than a lot of zombie films explore, and I was really glad this one chose to do just that. I, too, couldn’t imagine what it would be like if the government had to try and control something like that. Complete madness.

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