Matt Dentler
SXSW Film Festival
Written, edited, produced, directed by, and co-starring Yasuaki Nakajima, After the Apocalypse is one of the more accomplished one-man shows you’re likely to see in a theater all year. Nakajima has done what few emerging filmmakers have ever done: made an effective science fiction tale using limited resources and a lot of imagination. Shot in beautiful black-and-white film, After the Apocalypse tells the seemingly simple story of five individuals trying to survive the world after a horrible disaster. There’s a huge catch: due to poisonous gas, the four men and one woman cannot communicate by speaking. So, in essence, what this presents is a silent film set after WW III. Once the five survivors discover one another, they manage to begin rebuilding their lives in the bleak environment surrounding them. When some of the men realize that the lone woman is trapped in an abusive relationship, they plan an attempt to rescue her. Yet things grow even more complicated when they find out that the last woman on the planet may, in fact, be pregnant. This incredible human drama plays out with raw emotion thanks to brutally fresh performance by the leads. Nakajima has developed an impressive array of storytelling tools with After the Apocalypse. In the future of mankind, audiences will be able to get a glimpse at an intriguing future in filmmaking.