Tag Archives: schlock

World of the Dead: The Zombie Diaries (2011)

World of the Dead, The Zombie Diaries 2, 2011
Remember how the cover for the first film has NOTHING to do with the film? Well, consistency is supposed to be good…

Have you ever had the experience where someone you know excitedly says “Hey, ya gotta see this film!“?  Then once you watch it you’re left thinking “What the heck was that about?”, or worse “There is something SERIOUSLY WRONG with my friend!”  Welcome to to World of the Dead: The Zombie Diaries 2.

Immediately you can tell that this project has a higher budget and is visually more satisfying than the 2006 predecessor.  Then you get into the story and you start to see the problems…

The first thing you notice — as with the original film — is that the DVD cover is once again horribly misleading.  The cover art looks better than the film, and it represents something other than the content of the film.

Field full of zombies
I’m warning you — act like threatening zombies or we’ll shoot you!!!

The zombies feel very non-threatening — even less than in the original film.  The make-up is insufficient, the scares nearly non-existent, and the zombies are often so stiff they would be played better by untrained department store mannequins.  Add to that, when it comes to shooting the zombies I get the impression that the British film makers don’t have a clue as to what firearms sound like anymore (especially in the scene pictured).  The firearm sound effects left me non-pulsed — perhaps they were just the on-location recording of the blanks the actors were firing.

The biggest downfall of the movie…

World of the Dead, The Zombie Diaries 2, 2011
Yep, they should have stuck with this poster as the DVD cover

… aside from the emaciated plot and the you-are-there hand-held cinematography — are some of the specific content choices that film makers Michael Bartlett and Kevin Gates included.  Various gangs of survivors prove to be even more vile than the zombies.  This is well summed up in a review by FlickeringMyth.com when they wrote…

“There are a couple of, frankly, unneeded rape scenes (one on a female zombie) that just felt like Bartlett and Gates wanted to do some kind of rape revenge film, but gave up and worked zombies into it”.

Frankly it left this bagpiper & humble amateur zombie-film reviewer astounded.  I cannot recall feeling this disturbed by any zombie film I have previously seen.  This content included a challenged young man bullied into delivering a beating upon one of the primary male characters, and then pushed into committing a graphic rape/murder on one of the female primaries.  I have to wonder where the writer and his co-director think that this was appropriate, or fit within the film!  I also have to wonder about the actors (or even the crew) assuming they saw the script before they agreed to do the film — why would they participate in bringing this film to fruition?

Is there any redemption for this film?

World of the Dead, The Zombie Diaries 2, 2011, gas mask
Me around people who smoke

There are elements to this film that really work — the albeit over-used zombie-trope military element, the military and civilian survivors trying to escape from England, and the guys who ambiguously appear wearing protective suits and gas masks.  However it seems as though Bartlett and Gates thought that their ideas were so great — so sound — that they didn’t think to check their script or finished film with a third party.  And if they did, they didn’t listen to them say “There’s some good stuff here, but over all THIS IS A BAD IDEA.”  Or maybe they just half-assed it and figured this would fill a feature.  In the end, it is as The Daily Mail described the film, it’s an “88 minute waste of electricity.”, and I rate it Red Blood.

Seriously, I’m starting to think I ought to make a list titled “Zombie Films To Avoid Watching“.  Do you think I would have this one on it?  YOU BETTER BELIEVE IT!

A List Of Words Irrelevant To This Zombie Film
World of the Dead, The Zombie Diaries 2, 2011
At least you see one of these folks in the film — but destroyed city, a massive horde of zombies? Nope nope-nope!
  • Smash hit
  • Phenomenon

Links

pew pew pew
pew pew pew!

Navy SEALs Vs. Zombies (2015)

Navy Seals vs. Zombies, Navy Seals vs. Zombies
AKA Navy Seals vs. Zombies

After a deadly zombie outbreak in Louisiana, a team of highly skilled U.S. Navy SEALs are sent into  Baton Rouge to rescue the Vice President.  Embarking on the battle of their lives, they must fight for the city and their survival against an army of the undead.

That sounds pretty good right?  For zombie films it sounds par for course — and let’s face it, Z-film par has a history of being schlocky.  While I have seen worse (not to mention better, Much BETTER), this seems to be a throw-back to 1970s and 1980s schlock.

B-film SEALs
The guys — ready to go fishing!

Navy SEALs Vs. Zombies came up when I searched my local library system’s website for all-things ‘zombie’.  Surprisingly, enough other people where interested it took weeks to become first in the cue.  Watching this, I give it a Yellow Puss rating.  Don’t break your neck to see this film — if you are a zombie fan with a couple of hours to kill on the weekend and need to recharge your batteries, crash your couch and check it out.

I'd date her
Who needs a good script when there’s at least one pretty girl in the film

This is a film with C-string actors and a B-string script working in an industry that is well known for being tough with rare breaks.  It seems that this is such a B-film that they couldn’t cast an actor as the president — he had to be the vice president.  Frequently the dialogue lags, but then if the timing was better then this wouldn’t be a 97 minute film.  Between the costumes, props, and language the main characters give just enough of the right vibe to feel like Navy SEALs.  They even have operator beards, however I have never heard of an operator pony tail.  As for the zombies, they move fast, their makeup is pretty rabid, and when they attack they have their moments of intensity.

On a personal note…
Affliction Z - Patient Zero by L.T. Ryan
I loved to pick this up, I hated when I needed to put it down … but I fella has to sleep sometime.

Around the time of viewing Navy SEALs Vs. Zombies I was finishing reading “Affliction Z: Patient Zero” by L.T. Ryan.  In his book a team of SEALs are dropped into Nigeria to rescue a group of U.S. Army Rangers who went in earlier — and like the SEALs in this film, they get surprised by zombie afflicted people.  While this film is so-so, it gave a visual representation of similar fiction (just that I’ve enjoyed L.T. Ryan’s book much more)

Links

Outpost: Rise of the Spetsnaz (2013)

Red Blood

As far as I’m concerned Outpost: Rise of the Spetsnaz does not deserve the honor of a review or a comment on my webpage — but — I bought a copy, I’ve seen it, and I’m fairly thorough …. and I’ll share my opinion for other film fans of a genere to see something great or avoid something terrible.

Outpost: Rise of the Spetsnaz = AVOID

So there are a few things that happen in HolloWood that really stink up art, films, creative ideas …. and I mean stink up like the scrapings from the dog park at the end of a July weekend.  One of them is excessive creative liberties …. “I paid for the license on this story, and now regardless of whatever that story is I can do what I want — and I do!”  Another one is the thought that world federation wrestlers, extreme fighters, or ultimate weight lifters can act …. instead of putting them out to pasture once they’ve body-slammed their brains out or whatever, someone tries putting them into film.  Sometimes that works — a great example would be Dwayne Johnson — not only did we get lucky there, we got a real gift.  Usually what’s done is they put them in high-action/low-story roles, and because there’s a bunch of action it must be a good film.  WRONG!

This film takes the setting of Outpost and tries to give the back-story — the origins of the machine and the experiments — and strings along a battle-royal with some Russian Special Forces soldiers who come off more as resistance fighters and ultimately does nothing to establish the subtitle of the ‘rise of the Spetsnaz‘.

The opportunity for a quality, meaningful, story-establishing prequel to Outpost (2008) was entirely missed with Outpost: Rise of the Spetsnaz.  As my understanding goes, there was more money wasted on Rise of the Spetsnaz than there was spent on making Outpost: Black Sun (2012).  Black Sun is in my mind a superior film to ROTSpetnaz.  Black Sun derivatives from the character of the original 2008 film but stays enough within the universe.  Rise of the Spetnaz just took the setting and did whatever it wanted for the sake of making some meatheads an acting career.  In Black Sun the world is being threatened by the machine and the un-dead phase-shifting nazi super soldiers, and had the money that was thrown away in making ROTSpetnaz been put to Black Sun it could have delivered this world-threat development better.

I now own the 2008, 2012, and 2013 Outpost films.  I’m glad to have seen all three to know all the ground covered with the original idea, but had I known what was done with Outpost: Rise of the Spetsnaz I wouldn’t have paid ten cents for a copy.

Outpost: Rise of the Spetsnaz (2013) at IMDB and Wikipedia

Hard Rock Zombies (1985)

Red Blood

I like bad film… but not this bad.

I picked up this film a handful of years back while in a liquidation store for maybe $5.  It was on a DVD that had 3 zombie films — Night of the Living Dead, HRZ, and another title I can’t remember right now. Out of the three films, this one is such a POS that I think the other two films each cost half of the total  price and HRZ was thrown in for free — because this is the only way the folks who produced this film could get anyone to take a copy home.

Watching this film I get the impression that the producers and crew and the whole lot behind the film normally produce and shoot 1980s porn films.  In this case they got together outside of their usual work to do something different, or maybe they were trying to get a foothold in another part of the film industry other than porn.

The audio is bad, the songs are bad, the love affair between the lead-singer of the band and the local girl who seems underage clearly verges on having a pedophile element … maybe the only good thing about this is the outrageousness that someone thought to have a zombie film that included Hitler and Nazis.

BOTTOM LINE
Do Not Waste Your Time With This Film

I like bad film but this was so much of a train-wreck that I could only stand to watch it in 10-15 minute intervals.  It’s not one of those “It’s so bad it’s good” things, it’s just outright BAD.

Hard Rock Zombies (1985) at IMDB

HRZ at Rotten Tomatoes

HRZ reviewed at SomeThingAwful.com