Phase 4 picks up ‘The Philosophers’, placing George Blagden back on the big screen

George Blagden.

George Blagden.

As of Sunday, it’s official: a slightly younger George Blagden will be making his return to the silver screen!

While that statement may sound a little odd – after all, how can someone make a return to film younger than when audiences last saw them? – there is an interesting explanation when it comes to George Blagden and The Philosophers.

Mr. Zimit explains his challenge to the class in "The Philosophers."

Mr. Zimit explains his challenge to the class in “The Philosophers.”

The Philosophers, directed and written by John Huddles, is described as a psychological thriller with elements of science fiction and fantasy, and was Blagden’s first film project upon graduating from acting school in 2011.  The film, in which Blagden plays the role of a student named Andy, centers around a philosophy class at an international school in Jakarta, Indonesia whose teacher presents his students with an interesting challenge.  Each student is given an “occupation” and based on these, decide which ten of their classmates they would allow into a bunker to restart the human race after a nuclear holocaust.  However, things don’t go quite as planned, and the students push far beyond the realms of the “thought experiment” that their teacher had in mind.

After Blagden moved on to Les Miserables, Vikings and even audiobook recording, not much was heard about The Philosophers, and in fact, many new fans were unaware of its existence, at least until now.  The film has recently been picked up by film distributor Phase 4, which has made plans for both a theatrical and video-on-demand release of the film later this year in the United States and Canada.

The film, which also stars James D’Arcy, Sophie Lowe, Daryl Sabana, Freddie Stroma, Rhys Wakefield and Bonnie Wright, looks to be a perfect balance of contrasting elements.  It’s thoughtful and raises very clear, relevant questions about humanity – and about the ever-present “What would I do in this situation?” question, while at the same time being packing more than a hint of sci-fi action and explosions as the “thought experiment” gets enacted for the audience in what looks like various possible scenarios.

The cast of "The Philosophers."

The cast of “The Philosophers.”

On a visual level, the film looks absolutely stunning, and the premise is both extremely promising and exactly the kind of thing that seems to be doing well at the movies these days.  Public taste, it seems, has shifted, and people appear to want a bit more of an intellectual challenge to go with their action, some moral grey-area to pair with their violence and explosions, and The Philosophers certainly seems capable of bringing all of this to the table, and maybe even more.

So will audiences fall in love with The Philosophers?  Only time will tell, but I, for one, simply cannot wait to see the film make its nationwide debut, both for a chance to see Blagden’s earliest film work and because The Philosophers appears to be more than worth seeing in its own right.

What do you think?  Will audiences warm to The Philosophers?  Have you seen the trailer yet?  Let me know what you think in the comments below?

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  1. This movie is apparently considered to be of low interest to larger distributors and seems to find it hard to make its way on the big screen, especially in the US and UK. Agents of larger distributors who saw screenings apparently didn’t like it, from which one may conclude the movie is either very bad – or very good. The cast is promising (Sophie Lowe really is a great talent) but there are ample examples of hopeless movies with great actors. So that flick will most likely go straight to DVD.