Tuesday, February 19, 2008


I have a sick compulsion when it comes to end of the world films. It’s probably why I have so much love for zombie movies, there’s just something about the whole damn planet being torn apart and only tiny, scattered groups of survivors being left to try to fight for their existence. This compulsion has led me down some very tough paths in the past, but at the moment I’m having a hard time thinking of a movie I’ve impulse bought in such a genre that was as bad as this.

It’s not as if I didn’t have any warning about what the movie would be like, either. My efforts to research the film were in vain, as it’s so small time that it doesn’t even have an IMDB listing, which means that it’s actually lesser known than films like The Traveler or Purvos. Scary. And yet the product description’s promises of an end of the world scenario where a small band of survivors has to stand against the likes of zombies, demons, and reapers seemed too good to resist, because I am sometimes very, very stupid.

My first bit of confirmation that the film would give me problems came when I first put the disc in my DVD player and promptly went deaf. The film is set so ridiculously loud that I had to turn my volume down by twelve notches just to get a comfortable level of sound (Incidentally, the film wouldn’t even play in my PS2. It seems my Playstation wanted to save me a great deal of pain, and I am grateful to it for that). Of course, I might as well have turned it down all the way, because the sounds we get in the film aren’t, to put it charitably, any good whatsoever. There’s almost no dialogue for the first several minutes, which I found curious at first until people started talking and I realized that the silence was the film trying to play to its strengths. The music is pretty generic, alternating between a general Halloween store music that doesn’t change at all when anything changes on screen, and generic death metal music that seems to be fairly prevalent in no-budget horror movies. There’s only two main sound effects we get. One is a scream from one special zombie leader, distinguishable by the fact that his face seemed to be covered in pink goo, whereas the other zombies just use general store-bought gray face paint with darker gray paint for around the eyes. The film is so muddled that until the end, I didn’t even realize that that sound was the zombie screaming, but just thought he was supposed to be special enough to warrant his own musical cue. Either way, aside from occasionally summoning other zombies to attack the heroes, he just stands there doing nothing until someone finally shoots him. That brings us to the other main sound effect of gunfire, which seems to have been accomplished by recording a paint ball gun firing and using that sound for every single gun in the film, whether it be a hand gun, rifle, shotgun, what have you.

It should go without saying that the plot and acting are also particularly bad, but I’m here to say it anyway. The acting, particularly that of the male lead (actually, the lead is female, and she also sucks, but I’m talking here about the most prominent male character), is just abominable. These are the most apathetic, blasé people one could populate a film with. Robert Bresson would look at this movie and find the acting too wooden for his tastes as our heroes just casually mill about, slowly ambling through zombie infested woods like they haven’t a care in the world. Sure, there may be monsters all around us trying to eat us, but we can’t let that spoil our nice Sunday stroll, right? Right. The story is just a mess from start to finish, with a grim reaper and a demon running around that none of the characters can see, the reaper killing zombies when nobody’s watching and the demon palling around with the main characters and occasionally putting dark thoughts in their heads, and often hiding under the bed despite nobody being able to see him anyway. The ending gives us one of those horrid “Everyone’s connected” bits of nonsense where we get to see how every character was linked to the others before they even met, all through the tragic suicide of a little girl. Yeah, the film seems to want us to think the girl was just hit by a drunk driver, but it presents the accident so poorly that we see her running as fast as she can, making a beeline for the road, running out right in front of the car, then stopping and staring at it while waiting for death to overtake her. That was as clear a suicide as anything Bill Murray whipped up in Groundhog Day.

This film almost shouldn’t qualify for a review (particularly not one that may well be the longest I’ve yet written), since it’s basically just a bunch of college buddies goofing off in the woods and dressing up in stereotypical costumes, but screw it. They wanted me to pay money for the damn thing, this despite them not even paying for vaguely realistic blood and instead just using really fake looking CG blood, so they can live with the consequences. This is not a movie that you’re going to watch and remember fondly. This is a movie that you’re going to watch and then discuss ten years later with your prison’s psychologist. If a film of this quality came up in a 50 pack of horror movies, I would still be mad despite paying only 50 cents for it. I hope everyone that was involved in this had a good long talk with their parents afterward about where their lives were headed. Do not see this film.

Rating: Zero stars

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