Reign of Chaos (2022) [Female Filmmaker Friday]

When the lord of Chaos unleashes a plague on Earth and eliminates the majority of its population, only three women descendants of a powerful Goddess can stop him. 

Directed by Rebecca Matthews and written Tom Jolliffe, this low budget post-apocalyptic scifi horror action film takes the viewer on a ride along with lead character Nicole as she tries to survive a brutal plague and soon finds herself thrust into a group where it is made clear she is to save humanity with her new sisters. The film is an odd mix of all of the above: post-apocalyptic themes, science-fiction quite close to reality in some respects, horror with creatures that have incredible powers and only want to kill humans, and action in the training and fighting the ladies do to save humanity. This could easily lead to a mess of a film as has been seen many times before, but here is works fairly well. The horror is not as present as expected, but it’s definitely there and the science-fiction is sometimes a bit too close to reality considering the last two years, which helps ground the film. The creatures are almost not necessary here, but they do add to the action, so are welcomed for most of their appearances.  

The cast chosen for this film will most likely be on the unknown side of things for most viewers, but to horror and fantasy fans, there will be a few familiar faces. Playing the top-billed lead of Nicole is Rebecca Finch who is on point for most of the fil here. Her work is what you’d expect here and she does well as the newly-minted member of team Goddess Descendants. Playing the man who brings her in, Rhodri, is Peter Cosgrove and he is a decent and good slightly shifty trainer/leader/guide. The rest of the cast is also decent, it’s not exactly award season content, but the work is good here. The cast does work that is on par with the material at hand. 

The cinematography by Ben Collin and the editing help the film come up above most in its sub-genre and in its budget bracket. The work done in this part of the visual aspects of the film is done with calculated planning and a clear understanding of how far to push within the film’s limitations. Same thing can be said of the special effects and visual effects. While not perfect, these last two show care and a love for what is being put on the screen. These show that the team behind Reign of Chaos knew the type of material they were working with, the budget limitations, and how to overcome those limitations without risking going too far.  

Reign of Chaos is a mostly science fiction film that will appeal to fans of the post-apocalyptic sub-genre and will satisfy those looking for a fairly fast-paced adventure in a future not too far from our own era. The film could easily take place during one of the many lockdowns in the last few years.