Perhaps more than any other festive trope going, there are two things that you can always count on at Christmas time: singing and death. Carols and world famous Christmas number one singles are always a given. Between icy paths, a few too many drunk drivers and the wrath of Krampus against naughty children, a bit of bloody horror is usually to be expected too.
Director John McPhail‘s festive horror musical Anna and the Apocalypse perfectly embraces and combines these two age old traditions. The film tells the story of a teenage girl and her schoolfriends who fight off the zombie apocalypse, at Christmas, in their sleepy little village of Little Haven, with much of it conveyed through the timeless medium of song.
Written by Alan McDonald and Ryan McHenry, the film premiered at 2017’s Fantastic Fest Film Festival in Austin, Texas, followed by a European debut at Sitges Film Festival in Spain a month later. The movie is based on the late McHenry’s 2010 short film Zombie Musical.
It stars Ella Hunt, known for her role in ITV’s comedy Cold Feet, as the protagonist Anna. She is supported by Paul Kaye as Savage, who rose to fame with the crude character comedy of Dennis Pennis and has more recently appeared in Game of Thrones. Even Santa Claus makes an appearance, portrayed by Doctor Who and Outlander veteran, Calum Cormack.
It has already received a huge amount of acclaim from critics and public audiences alike, with five out of five stars from a number of reviewers and a whopping 92% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
The film has now been acquired by Orion Pictures, which in its time was also responsible for such timeless movies as The Life of Brian, as well as James Gunn’s more recent The Belko Experiment.
The company plans to release Anna and the Apocalypse in theatres in time for Christmas 2018. If you can’t wait until then, check out the trailer to tide you over.