Neighbors in an apartment complex awake to find their doors and windows completely sealed shut. When strangers in hazmat suits infiltrate their building and begin snatching residents, tempers fray and fear takes over.
Unable to identify the infected from the uninfected, the quaratined start questioning the authorities. Loyalties are tested to their limits as friends and family turn against each other in an adrenaline fuelled fight for survival.
The idea for CONTAINMENT originated from my desire to tell a gripping story that was large in scope but achievable on a relatively small scale: an independent disaster movie, and a film that was as experiential as possible. A film that places our audience at the very heart of a terrible moral dilemma.
CONTAINMENT unfolds through the eyes of Mark, a failed artist separated from his ex-wife and young son. A man who has never grown up and faced the responsibilities of being a husband and a father. A man struggling to find his place in the world.
On the surface, the film is a base-under-siege thriller. At its heart it's a character study of a group of ordinary people forced to make impossible choices, and in the process being confronted with the repressed sides of their own nature, along with each other’s.
What excited me about this story was the opportunity for some storytelling sleight of hand. David Lemon (screenwriter) and I wanted to establish familiar genre tropes and audience expectations within the first act, only to subvert those expectations mid-way through the second. Just as our protagonists begin to make increasingly questionable choices, the audience, through identification, begin to question their own moral ideology: what would you do?
I wanted to create a film that became a visual metaphor for the emotional journey of the characters. Just as the morality and civilised nature of our protagonists begins to crumble under pressure, so too does the very fabric of the building that has been invaded. Their environment transforms into an urban jungle where you have to fight to survive. It becomes a microcosm of society.