If the Coronavirus is making you paranoid, the pandemic in “Block Z” may not be the best thing for your anxiety.
|Screenplay By||Mixkaela Villalon|
|Date Released (Theatrical – USA)||3/13/2020|
|Genre(s)||Action, Adventure, Horror, Romance, Young Adult, Non-English (Filipino/Tagalog)|
|Duration||1 Hour, 41 Minutes|
|Princess Joy “PJ”||Julia Barretto|
|Myles||McCoy De Leon|
This content contains pertinent spoilers.
Summary & Review
Plot (Ending Spoilers & Sequel Potential Are On The Second Page)
At San Lazaro University, Princess Joy “PJ” and her friends Lucas, Erika, and Myles are 4th-year medical students prepping to assist with the recent infectious disease which is disturbing the Philippines right down to its economy. But, what initially was seen as just a deadly disease, akin to rabies, ends up becoming a zombie outbreak that forever changes PJ’s world and ends the life of many of her peers, mentors, and others.
Cast & Characters
Princess Joy “PJ” (Julia Barretto)
The lead character of “Block Z” who, alongside her friends, Erika, Myles, and Lucas, are med students at San Lazaro University.
Erika (Maris Racal)
PJ’s best friend who is as much focused on school as eventually finding a husband.
Myles (McCoy De Leon)
The nerdy Member of PJ’s group who is one of the first to discover there is an outbreak.
Mario (Ian Veneracion)
PJ’s father who is a widow and has fallen on hard times. The kind which may prevent PJ from continuing her education.
Lucas (Joshua Garcia)
PJ’s friend who is a star basketball and has a major crush on her.
Bebeth (Dimples Romana)
One of the members of the university’s security team who becomes a major asset once the outbreak begins.
Gelo (Yves Flores)
The son of a military general whose popularity allowed him to become the president of the student council.
On The Fence
You May Not Feel Like You Got To Know Someone Enough To Care If They Die
While we hear the hopes, dreams, and hobbies of the lead actors, I can’t say when their life is threatened, you’ll be like, “NO! NOT _______!” For there just isn’t much there, in terms of background or performance, to create that kind of emotional connection. PJ is a sweetheart, and while she does have some trauma in her past, it is so cheaply placed that it doesn’t make you feel bad for her. It just makes you hunch. Then, when it comes to Erika, Myles, and Lucas, there is so little said by them, or about them, to make you care.
For example, before the outbreak and chaos, hearing about Lucas’ crush on PJ, or Erika thinking med school is as much about finding a doctor for a husband as becoming a doctor, it doesn’t do much. Add in Myles is basically just the scared nerdy character, who eventually bucks up, and it makes it a challenge to be worried as the kids get outnumbered, and their lives end up on the line.
It Overstays It’s Welcome After A Certain Point
There are multiple points towards the end of the film, you’ll think it is over. And honestly, while I can’t say each would be ending is a fake-out, I will say each time you think it is over is better than what follows. Especially as it builds towards a potential sequel.
Would Watch Again? – One and Done
Rating: Mixed (Divisive)
Perhaps the only scary thing about “Block Z” is that it focuses on an outbreak, similar to the Coronavirus, and could push a paranoid mind into dangerous territory. However, with little care built into the character to make you emotionally invested, all you get is a bunch of ripped out necks, bite wounds, people running around with a crazed look, thanks to contacts, and just enough of a thrill to keep you from getting bored. At least until you get what feels like multiple endings in succession.