6.7/10
45,196
203 user 247 critic

The Girl with All the Gifts (2016)

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A scientist and a teacher living in a dystopian future embark on a journey of survival with a special young girl named Melanie.

Director:

Colm McCarthy

Writers:

Mike Carey (novel), Mike Carey (screenplay)
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Popularity
3,004 ( 276)
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 8 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sennia Nanua ... Melanie
Fisayo Akinade ... Kieran Gallagher
Dominique Tipper ... Devani
Paddy Considine ... Sgt Eddie Parks
Anamaria Marinca ... Dr. Jean Selkirk
Gemma Arterton ... Helen Justineau
Anthony Welsh ... Dillon
Glenn Close ... Dr. Caroline Caldwell
Mia Garcha Mia Garcha ... Melanie Double
Grace McGee Grace McGee ... Anne
Eli Lane Eli Lane ... Kenny
Connor Pratt Connor Pratt ... Peter
Joe Lomas Joe Lomas ... Joe
Will Brooks Will Brooks ... Painted Boy
Joel Sheldon Joel Sheldon ... T-Shirt Boy
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Storyline

In a dystopian near future, humanity has been ravaged by a mysterious fungal disease. The afflicted are robbed of all free will and turned into flesh-eating 'hungries'. Humankind's only hope is a small group of hybrid children who crave human flesh but retain the ability to think and feel. The children go to school at an army base in rural Britain, where they're subjected to cruel experiments by Dr. Caroline Caldwell (Glenn Close). School teacher Helen Justineau (Gemma Arterton) grows particularly close to an exceptional girl named Melanie (Sennia Nanua), thus forming a special bond. But when the base is invaded, the trio escape with the assistance of Sgt. Eddie Parks (Paddy Considine) and embark on a perilous journey of survival, during which Melanie must come to terms with who she is.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Our greatest threat is our only hope. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for disturbing violence/bloody images, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 January 2017 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

She Who Brings Gifts See more »

Filming Locations:

Birmingham, England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£4,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Glenn Close's sister-in-law, Deb Close, is a massive fan of zombie films, having always wanted to be in one, and has a small role as one of the "hungries" in the scene where the group has to work their way through a crowd of them. She is the one wearing a blue knit, with green facial fungus and blood around the mouth and neck, that Glenn stares at as her character walks past. Deb flew to the UK especially for the part, and the first thing Glenn did after accepting her role was call to let Deb know she was in a zombie film. See more »

Goofs

Whilst the movie was filmed in 2015 the panoramic shot of central London containing the 'Gherkin' also shows the old building at 20 Fenchurch Street, which was demolished in 2008, its replacement, the 'Walkie Talkie' was completed in 2014. See more »

Quotes

Kieran Gallagher: [Surrounded by the feral Hungry kids] You touch me,
[shows a grenade]
Kieran Gallagher: I'll blow you all to shit.
See more »

Connections

References Cujo (1983) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Highly recommended, and vastly superior to most of the genre.
27 September 2016 | by Artless_DodgerSee all my reviews

Excellent performances and interesting source material (MR Carey adapting his own novel), plus imaginative direction (Scottish director Colm McCarthy), create a chilling sci-fi tale of hungries (zombies) versus humanity.

The opening sequence sets the tone. Melanie, a young, polite, and courteous girl manacles herself into a wheel chair. She seems entirely innocent and harmless, yet her captors fear otherwise. She and other children, each similarly restrained, are given an armed escort to a classroom. It's an arresting start and it grabs our attention. Sennia Nanua plays Melanie and the story revolves around her. We watch society collapsing through her eyes, see her threatened by the human beings around her, and fear for her. We watch her do terrible things, and yet we root for her. Everything is uncertain. Nothing is as it seems. It's a brilliant performance from a new talent, and it serves the film perfectly.

Melanie is surrounded by contrasting emotions from those nearest to her. Gemma Arterton is excellent as protective and caring psychologist/teacher Helen Justineau, fiercely defending Melanie against the machinations of Dr Caroline Caldwell (Glenn Close) who sees Melanie as a specimen to be dissected. Paddy Considine convinces as Sergeant Eddie Parks, a tough, no- nonsense soldier fighting a losing battle.

Colm McCarthy brings this all together superbly, belying the film's modest budget. Striking visuals and frenetic action are never allowed to overwhelm the characters, who take centre stage. And at it's heart is Melanie. Confusing, ambivalent, terrifying, lovable Melanie. It's a wonderful turn from Sennia Nanua.

Highly recommended, and vastly superior to most of the genre.


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