Extra sugar needed?

He is an interesting new psychological trend, which I am now wondering whether it’s confined to myself? The comet-striking-the-Earth movie Greenland recently popped up “for free” to Amazon Prime subscribers and I started watching it, but then needed to abandon the film after a short while.

Not because it’s rubbish, but because the movie is all too grimly realistic and unrelenting on the intensity stakes. Forget films like Armageddon where NASA and its nuclear-armed space shuttles are always on hand to save the day along with a few key wildcat miners. This is the real deal.

A comet appears from beyond the solar system – actually, it’s a comet cloud with thousands of pieces – and is due to make a very close scrape to our planet. Except, it transpires the global leadership and elites knew all the time the comet was on a direct impact vector, and took the time to not inform the public to avoid global panic, but constructed a series of remote bunkers stocked with enough water, oxygen, and canned supplies to outlast the two-year nuclear winter, and deep enough to survive an atomic bomb-level shockwave which will sweep across the entire Earth, no exceptions.

Normally for these kinds of movies, you take a mixed high-level view of the government officials making decisions, the astronauts whose job it is to save everybody, and the plucky astronomers who make the discovery. Forget about that. This is all from the viewpoint of a single-family, a construction worker and his wife and kid, who are selected for a rare seat in a bunker because of the dad’s ability to lay down some concrete foundations for the eventual recovery.

The family is then plunged across various adventures as they have to make their way to shelter through a society that just went mental and had a breakdown as everybody realises they’re going to die. Basically, this is a realistic scenario where 99.9% of humanity gets to perish, either in the initial fire burst, or the years-long attempt to breathe radioactive ash while slaughtering any fellow survivors for the last remaining can of baked beans.

Having just reached the tail end of a one to two-year long fire drill for an Ebola level extinction-level event, I find myself too fragile to suffer this kind of thriller anymore. I need fluff. I need silly space opera material such as Space Sweepers on Netflix, or, heck, the sci-fi pulp I write myself for you readers out there.

I suspect I’m not alone. And I’m left wondering if I’ll ever be psychologically durable enough to watch this kind of film again?

Watching from behind the sofa?


I am an author of various fantasy, science fiction, crime and other genre books from Gollancz, Hachette and HarperCollins. Some day I hope to grow up and be an astronaut. Exploring Mars would be nice.

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