Little gets me like father-child relationships, and nothing gets me like father-child relationships in bleak post-apocalyptic settings. This has to do with father-child dynamics (which I find fascinating), but mostly the concept of unconditional, selfless love in the face of a woefully hopeless future. I was bawling my eyes out 10 minutes into both the book and film adaptation of The Road when nothing had even really happened because the subject touches me so profoundly.
So when I tell you that Cargo by Ben Howling and Yolanda Ramke is about just that — a father-child relationship in a bleak post-apocalyptic setting — you can probably guess the way this review will turn out. Yes, a tear or two were shed. Heartstrings were pulled. But Cargo doesn’t go for the cheap drama shots and moral lessons. It isn’t a boastful, manipulative film. It’s gentle and cautious, and its brilliance lies in its impartiality. Except for some subtle musical accompaniment that rears up toward the end, there’s nothing to direct your emotions, not even dialogue. The raw tragedy of the storyline does the job.
I think many of us are a tad sick of the zombie genre by now because it seems like covered ground for the most part, but this picture is a must-watch. It’s hugely popular with over 5 million views on YouTube despite not winning any awards at the Tropfest festival, where it was originally screened. And with good reason. Watching it is a rewarding way to spend 7 minutes and 4 seconds of your day, I promise, and about 76 811 people are backing my claim as we speak. Beware, though, for it might also shatter you emotionally, especially if you’re a dad/parent yourself.
Find it embedded below, and let us know what you think if you’ve seen it or decide to do it now.