IO (2019)

You know what I've been seeing for the past week or so as soon as I opened Netflix? The trailer of IO, their new post-apocalyptic movie. Worn out by its continuous playing and because Anthony Mackie is in it, I decided to give it a shot. How bad could it be, right? A lot, as it turned out. 

The film follows Sam Walden (Margaret Qualley), a young scientist as well as one of the last people on a post-cataclysm Earth who is dedicated to finding a way to save the planet and for humans to adapt and survive on it. Time is not on her side though as the final shuttle is about to depart and she only has a few days to make a meaningful scientific outbreak discovery or stay on the dying planet. That's when another survivor, Micah (Anthony Mackie), shows up and tries to convince her to leave.

If you add many scientific inaccuracies, plot holes, unnecessary things and no explanation whatsoever to what happened to Earth, why it has become uninhabitable —it's not a surprise though, considering how we are treating our planet— you get the entire plot of IO, which, I'm sure I don't need to tell you, is far from being compelling. The essence of the story isn't even terrible as it keeps reminding us how important human connection and relationships, not just with family or friends but humans in general, are important. The problem is that the filmmakers found the most unappealing and tedious way to do it. 

The characters are another big issue here. Considering that there are only two characters, Sam and Micah, one of which, Sam, has about half of the film all for herself, you would expect fleshed out characters. Well, I'm sorry to tell you but it does not happen in IO as the characters are flat, bland and uninspired, and their actions don't make a lot of sense —they both acknowledge what is going on but they don't act like it. Margaret Qualley and Anthony Mackie do exactly what you expect anything to do with such a poor script, they crumble. The script isn't the only problem though as they don't even try.

To say that IO is a complete misfire would be wrong though. As a matter of fact, the visuals and scenery are pretty good looking, and the costumes are quite interesting.

Ultimately though, the film doesn't bring anything new to the table in terms of post-apocalypse, science fiction or romance. It's just a tremendously slowly paced film that you wish you never watched.

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