It’s funny how I never get tired of post-apocalyptic thrillers. Some are terrific (Dark Angel), some start out with potential and then fizzle out (The Walking Dead, The Last Ship, Revolution), and some are plain rotten from the start (Aftermath). Where does The Rain fall? Pardon the pun but it’s too early to tell. However, there’s a lot of potential here.
The premise of Netflix’s Danish production is mysterious enough: a terrifying virus starts to spread through the rain, and a family of four seek shelter in an underground bunker. To reveal any more details would spoil the plot’s numerous surprises, but suffice to say, the pilot’s script take some turns that I certainly didn’t see coming. In fact, this is a very creepy and atmospheric hour that sustains an eerie and disturbing tone from the teaser right until its chilling final moments. I was pleasantly surprised!
Not So Danish
Funnily enough, aside from the fact that this is a Danish show (yes you’ll have to read English subtitles), The Rain feels like a very American production. The slick cinematography (the water drops falling in slow motion are a highlight), the catastrophic set pieces – it’s all very Hollywood-y. Whereas Money Heist(or La Casa De Papel as it’s known in Spain), felt very European in its essence and characters, The Rain is no different than your usual apocalyptic thrill-ride. That’s not a bad thing, but it’s worth noting that there’s nothing particularly foreign (or culturally unique) here.
A Capable Cast
The show’s young performers are a definite highlight. Alba August is a revelation as Simone, our strong-willed protagonist. In fact, she reminded me of Emily VanCamp’s star-making turn on Revenge many years ago. Equally good are Bertil De Lorenzi and Lucas Lynggaard Tønnesen, both of whom are tasked with playing Simone’s brother Rasmus across different timelines. The casting department really knocked this one out of the park, as finding young talent who aren’t irritating is an extremely difficult task. Just look at Fear The Walking Dead – I could barely watch that spinoff for a few episodes before I quit cold turkey. Bravo Netflix!
A captivating pilot episode that’s packed with intrigue and a kickass cliffhanger.