Saturday, May 16, 2009

Automaton Transfusion

It's late, and I just got done watching this. Instead of a coherent review, I'll just throw this out there. These are some thoughts that I had while watching this movie.

Have you ever wanted to see a guy in a Ramones shirt reach into a pregnant woman's stomach, pull out the fetus, and eat it right in front of her as she screamed, cried, and, ultimately, died? If you answered yes to this question, then you would probably love Automaton Transfusion (or, at the very least, you would love one scene of Automaton Transfusion).

The acting was awful. The characters were all unlikeable (at best). The gore was pretty good for the most part. One girl had her jaw completely ripped from her face. Another was torn limb-from-limb. One guy was forced to kill his own father by pushing his eye onto a shard of glass (kind of like the splinter in Zombi II, but nowhere near as graphic or cool). But, when people weren't being ripped apart like animals, this was a terrible movie. And it was right from the opening credits.

I've never felt inclined to comment on the opening credits of a movie before, but these were terrible. Every couple of seconds, there would be a big flash of light. I felt like I almost had a seizure while I was watching it.

As one of the characters picked up a chainsaw, he said, "Ash would be so proud." That was good for a chuckle.

Our hero is a kid named Chris...some punk who thinks he's smarter than people and makes the worst possible decision available to him at that time. One of these decisions was to make his way across town to get a serum to make him immune to zombie bites...but he has conveniently blocked out the part about most of his friends being eaten alive. I'd say getting bitten is the least of his worries. Another of his decisions was to leave a perfectly safe garage in order to get to the school. His reasoning? "There will be survivors at the school." Never mind the fact that one of the big rules in dealing with zombies is to stay away from populated areas.

He's also terrible under pressure. When rummaging through a lab looking for the serum, his girlfriend cries out, "Where is it? What are we even looking for?" To which our hero replies, "Anything that can save us." I'm pretty sure she meant, "What does the bottle look like? Is there a label? How will I know when I've found this serum?" Jackass. She should have left him right then and there.

The ending will make you madder than you have any reason to be for a movie this terrible. I don't want to ruin anything by saying how it ended, but you will be mad.

In conclusion: if they were to splice together all the action scenes, it would make for a pretty cool 20 minutes. Suffice it to say, that's not what they did here. This was a bad movie with a couple of good moments...but those good moments didn't even come close to making up for the diaper stain that was Automaton Transfusion. That quote on the front of the movie that says, "One of the best zombie films in decades"? An out-and-out lie.

Why...hello there. What's your name?

Friday, May 15, 2009

Dead Snow

I read about this movie in a magazine. I'm always up for a promising zombie movie...and the prospect of Nazi zombies was one that I would not miss. So I tracked it down and watched it last night.
I thoroughly enjoyed it.
The movie starts out a little slow, but I suppose most zombie movies do. There has to be some sort of set up. This one followed some med school students on Easter break. They decided to vacation at a cabin in the mountains. Do some skiing, go for snowmobile rides, play Twister, pretend to suffocate each other with pillows, have sex in an outhouse, etc. You's what all the kids are doing these days.
An old guy shows up and tells them of the dangers of the mountains...namely, the hordes of undead Nazis.
Eventually, the Nazis show up and wreak havoc among these stranded rich kids. Blood and intestines flow like wine. People are ripped apart, houses are set on fire, and an undead Nazi's innards are used as a rope.
A little over an hour into the movie, the surviving members somehow stop being scared out of their minds and start fighting back. And oh, what a fight it is. Chainsaws, hammers, feet, machine guns, and (I'm pretty sure) a bird are all used against the Nazis. It's gory and funny and a little unnerving, all at the same time.
Here is part of the battle. It's my favorite scene of the movie. Make sure you watch it with the sound on, because the music makes this scene incredible.


As you can probably tell from that clip, this isn't your standard zombie movie. Destroying the brain or removing the head isn't the only way to kill them. They can be killed in pretty much the same way as any ordinary slicing open their stomach with a chainsaw and watching their intestines fall to the ground. John Rambo killed a man in a similar fashion (only with a handmade machete instead of a chainsaw...because that's how Rambo rolls).
They're fast, they're intelligent, and they're strong. None of these fits the standard zombie profile. But they are undead, and that has to count for something.

Overall, it's an extremely solid movie. Once you get past the character introductions, it really is a fantastic movie. And it's not that the intros are's just that the rest of it is so good.

Highly recommended. It's worth your time to check it out.