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Sci-Fi, Zombies, & Family Drama

two men from the future being captured

The Visitor From the Future
Image: Fantastic Fest

Time-travel, zombies, action, comedy, drama, The Visitor From the Future has it all. Co-written and directed by François Descraques, the film is based on a popular online French web series and both start very much the same way: a disheveled rogue (Florent Dorin) travels back in time to save the world. The film goes beyond that, though, in ways that feel familiar but are nevertheless a delight.

It’s all about a named Gilbert (Arnaud Ducret) who is about to open a nuclear power plant in the present. A power plant that, The Visitor knows, will end up basically destroying the world and turning its population into zombies. The Visitor and his team have tried to stop this for some time, but continue to fail. Eventually those attempts intersect with Gilbert’s daughter, Alice (Enya Baroux), who similarly wants to stop her father, although she has no idea how far his mistake will go. So The Visitor and Alice, along with Gilbert, travel to the future while being chased by the evil Time Patrol, a group tasked with keeping time on track.

Image for article titled The Visitor From the Future Does Sci-Fi Comedy, and Zombies and Drama, Right

Image: Pyramid Productions

There’s a lot going on in The Visitor From The Future, but the best thing about it is just how well it blends together so many different elements. With its core time-travel plot, there are many sci-fi mysteries to unravel. As The Visitor continues to elude the Time Patrol, there’s plenty of action too. Then, most importantly, the film has a super strong emotional core thanks to Alice and Gilbert – characters who are new to the series – who have a sad family history and radically divergent points of view on the world. As the pair tag along with The Visitor trying to save the world, we experience the full scope of a father-daughter relationship, one that eventually leads to an unexpected but welcome gut-punch of an ending that takes the film to a whole other level.

And while everything about The Visitor From the Future screams “big budget blockbuster filmmaking,” Descraques reportedly made the entire film for around 4 million Euros. That’s not a lot in the grand scheme of thingsnd yet the production design, effects, costumes and more all make it look much much bigger. You can tell it was made by people who know how to get the most out of every single resource. Even the bombastic, exciting score by Jimmy Tillier adds some very broad, exciting scope. Basically, the entire film feels and looks like a big season finale of Doctor Whowith the stakes and surprises to match.

I must admit, I’d never seen or heard of The Visitor From the Future before sitting down to see the feature adaptation at Fantastic Fest 2022, but it completely won me over. That means if you are a fan, you’ll probably like it even more. And that’s saying something, because this movie is awesome.

Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel and Star Wars releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TVand everything you need to know about House of the Dragon and Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power.

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