In “The End We Start From,” director Mahalia Belo brings to life Megan Hunter’s climate-change-themed bestseller with precision and a focus on the human experience. The film paints a chilling picture of a world slowly unraveling due to climate crisis, told through the lens of a modest British indie.
This isn’t your typical disaster movie with extravagant CGI spectacles. Instead, Belo concentrates on the intimate, domestic impact of a global flood. The story revolves around a young couple (Jodie Comer and Joel Fry) struggling to raise their newborn in the midst of a watery catastrophe.
The film’s characters remain largely nameless, emphasizing the universality of their experience. Personal details take a backseat, allowing the characters’ actions to reveal their humanity. Only the newborn, named Zeb, receives a moniker, symbolizing hope for future generations.
The story begins with the mother stranded in her flooded London apartment as she goes into labor. The family embarks on a journey northward, facing challenges such as traffic jams and shortages of essential supplies. Their journey leads to encounters with other survivors, some offering support, while others exhibit the worst of human behavior.
Alice Birch’s screenplay, known for its resilience-driven stories of women in dire circumstances, combines rigorous storytelling with moments of emotional release. Director Mahalia Belo’s restrained approach highlights the human element, avoiding flashy cinematic distractions.
Suzie Lavelle’s cinematography, Arttu Salmi’s editing, and Laura Ellis Cricks’s production design effectively convey a state of emergency. The film’s excellent score by Anna Meredith complements the storytelling, adding to the immediacy of the narrative.
In “The End We Start From,” Jodie Comer’s performance is riveting, conveying the desperation and determination of a mother trying to navigate a world in chaos. As viewers, we are left pondering our own responses in the face of such peril.
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