Film review: 65

Adam Driver is on an exploratory mission for an advanced civilisation, crash lands on an alien planet. The planet?… Earth, 65 Million years ago.

65, at its core is a fairly simple plot, a main character crash landing followed by trying to escape. However, what makes this film stand out is that the alien planet is Earth some 65 million years ago. No humans to contend with but rather some very angry dinosaurs.

The main character, Mills (Adam Driver) is forced to leave his home world of Somaris, to get money to help treat his sick daughter Nevine (Chloe Coleman). The plan goes array when his ship hits an uncharted asteroid field and they crash land. All but one of his crew dies except a young girl called Koa (Ariana Greenblatt) who can’t speak English. Their only hope is an escape pod that is 15km away across very dangerous and unknown ground.

The appearances of dinosaurs in cinema immediately brings comparisons with the Jurassic Park universe. We get similar themes but what really comes across are some parallels with the first Jurassic Park. There are jump scares, looming shadows hiding in the rain, genuinely scary moments that could scare younger viewers. The CGI is on the most part convincing with animals and scenery standing out and not looking comically fake. We don’t get instant attack scenes but rather the tension builds into exciting action sequences, that have been lacking from the Jurassic franchise of late.

One example is when Driver’s character sets up a perimeter of sensors which start to pulse red as a warning but nothing is there, only to be revealed in the background. To have dinosaurs appear just in the background and out of focus does really bring the tension of this film up. It is produced by Sam Rami showing off some of his horror background. Pair this with the writers being the ones behind A Quiet Place, it’s quite a potent mix.


The film balances the adventure with genuine heart. Mostly seen between the relationship between Driver and Koa he sees in her the daughter he has left behind. The fact that they can’t communicate only exaggerates his struggles as trying to explain his actions. With her parents gone he must convince her to trust him as they plan their escape. Their bond gets tested and has moments of sorrow that does in my opinion deepen their connection.

It is not all sorrow though, there are some genuinely fun moments that release the tension. There is however, an impending doom that follows them throughout. Not only is this earth 65 million years ago. This is the time when a certain asteroid impacted. So the whole story accelerates as a race against not only a cataclysmic event but the local wildlife that sees them as lunch.

Overall this film was a really fun experience, it’s not going to be up for any Oscars, but rather it knows what it is and that isn’t a bad thing. A solid 90 minutes of action, suspense and easy watching for those who like a classic monster escape film. The fact that there are only four cast members in the entire film does help keep it nice and lean without many character backgrounds to get confused with, and the tension and action are done really well without ever being over the top.

Tying it all together is Driver who really shows his talents here, albeit being a tad wooden in places. We do get a great sense of empathy with his character. I would heartily recommend this film as a fun one to watch and if you get a chance the cinema, as you can’t beat hearing a dinosaur roar in the rain through a loud sound system!






Author: Tom, Bath Store