Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Zombie Lake

Description from Netflix:
During World War II, a group of villagers ambushed and defeated a band of German soldiers and threw their bodies in the nearby lake.  Now, the Nazis have returned as angry zombies, preying on unsuspecting teen swimmers and skinny-dippers.

My thoughts:
The above description should tell you just about all you need to know.  Especially the part about skinny-dippers.  Oh man...for a lake as filthy as this one, it's amazing how many skinny-dippers there are.  Young women find their way to the lake and immediately think, "I need to take off all my clothes and get in there as soon as possible."  And they do.

Within seconds, every girl in this shot was naked

While all this gratuitous nudity was going on (I'll estimate that 30% of this movie was naked ladies), there was a backstory about one of the Nazis and his daughter.  While he was stationed in this town, he knocked up a resident.  He was then killed, because he was a Nazi, and that's what you do to Nazis.  So, on top of killing nude co-eds, he also wanted to reunite with his daughter.  Because, even though he was a zombie, he still held his memories he had while living (like Colin or Bub).

Let's get some ice cream or something.  I mean...arrrrrrggggggghhhhhh

Needless to say, it was a terrible story.  They writers decided it really wasn't worth their time to flesh out any of the characters or their motivations or anything.  Am I asking too much of a softcore-zombie-porn?  Probably.

There were a lot of laughable parts of this movie (on top of the obvious nudity, which I feel has been covered pretty well).  The make-up was atrocious.  Like, visibly-rubbing-off-during-scenes bad.  Check that picture above: the make-up on his arms is rubbing off at the end of the sleeve.  And take a look at the neck on the picture below:

That's human flesh, my friends.

Most of the zombies walked around like regular people, if a little slower.  But this joker thought he was Karloff or something.  Seriously.  No other zombie moved like this.

"We belong undead.  Hey.  Hey!  Did you guys hear what I said?!"

This is one of my favorite pictures from the movie.  Look how bored that zombie on the left looks.

He's like a depressed, zombified Kyle Gass.

To say this was a terrible movie would be about the best review I could give it.  At times, it was borderline unwatchable.  Honestly, I felt a little uncomfortable watching it at times (that had less to do with the nudity and more to do with the fact that it felt like it was made by a Nazi sympathizer).  The handful of laughs didn't make up for the rest of it.

If you're looking for a good Nazi zombie movie (and who isn't?), I highly recommend you go with Dead Snow.

Underwater zombies, I know, I know, they're serious

Rating: 1/5

Zombies: they seemed to be pretty standard zombies.  No super-strength or anything like that.  Regular gunshots didn't seem to stop them (although I can't vouch for headshots, because I'm not sure any of them were actually shot in the head).  However, the thing that separated these zombies from your Romero zombies was the fact that fire killed them.  Anyone who knows zombies knows you should never set one on fire: it won't kill them, and now you have a flaming zombie to contend with.  But it seemed to work for these guys.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Mimesis: Night of the Living Dead

Description from Netflix:
When they accept an invitation to an exclusive party at a remote farm, seven strangers who love scary movies find themselves unwilling participants in a nightmarish role-playing game that pays homage to a classic horror film.

Notable actors: Courtney Gains, Sid Haig

My thoughts:
First of all, Courtney Gains and Sid Haig were in the movie for a combined 5 minutes, which was pretty disappointing.

The movie has a solid premise.  Anyone who is a regular reader of this blog knows that I'm a sucker for a good meta horror movie.  Cabin in the Woods.  Behind the Mask.  Scream.  And so on.  A good movie like this can offer a fresh perspective on the genre.
And, as you should also know (based on the name of this blog), I love a good zombie movie.  Like any good zombie-lover, one of my favorite zombie movies is Night of the Living Dead.  I've seen it countless times, and I love it a little more every time I watch it.
All those things being said, this movie should be right up my alley.  A meta-zombie movie.  Beyond that, an imaginative take on the most influential zombie movie ever made.  I should love this.

Sadly, I didn't love it.  Again, I really liked the premise.  But that was my favorite part of the movie.
The characters were confusing.  Everyone that was trapped in the house (with the exception of one of the characters) were assumed to be big horror movie fans.  They all met at a horror convention.  Presumably, they knew their stuff.
And still, it took roughly 30 minutes for any of the characters to realize they were reliving Night of the Living Dead.  Six massive horror fans and it took them that long to figure it out?  They were dressed like the characters and everything.

Beyond that, once one of the characters realized what was going on, no one remembered what happened in the movie.  The best they could come up with was, "everyone dies" and "the truck explodes".  That's it.  Any self-respecting horror fan knows Night of the Living Dead like the back of their hands.
At that point, the movie lost all credibility for me.

There were some interesting moments.  And, while the credo of the killers could be summed up by a well-known line from Scream ("Movies don't create psychos; movies make psychos more creative."), the concept was decent enough to carry me through the glut of exposition scenes.

The acting was uneven at best.  I liked a couple of the characters (the girl who took on the role of Barbra was pretty good, and looked quite a bit like Judith O'Dea), but, for the most part, my favorite characters ended up dying off too soon, or being pushed into the background (I could've used less Allen Maldonado, more Lauren Mae Shafer).  And, even for the actors I liked, the script didn't give them much to work with.

For a movie with such an inventive premise, I was pretty disappointed with the film as a whole.  It had its moments, and I may even end up watching it again, but it certainly isn't great.  It comes nowhere close to the level of Cabin in the Woods, Behind the Mask or Scream.

It's always disappointing to me when a movie like this doesn't live up to expectations.  They had a great idea, and just bungled the execution.

Rating: 2/5

Thursday, February 7, 2013

BloodRayne: The Third Reich

Description from Netflix:
In this action adventure spun off from a video game, half-human, half-vampire rebel spirit Rayne is pitted against a dark evil from another time - a squad of undead Nazi warriors trying to inject Adolf Hitler with Rayne's blood to make him immortal.

Notable actors: Clint Howard

My thoughts:
On paper, I should really love this series.  A vampire-hybrid vampire hunter who is shown at random points in history, killing vampires and vanquishing evil in general.  Like a time-traveling Blade, but a hot chick.
I should have loved the second movie in particular.  My love of westerns meets my love of action-horror.
I also should've loved this movie.  A vampire hunter going up against Nazi vampires.
Sadly, when Uwe Boll is involved, all bets are off.

The story was cheesy, but it could've been decent with someone more competent at the helm.  But Boll is far from a competent hand.  He has earned his title as the worst director currently working.

The acting was terrible.  The dialogue was trash.  And the characters were awful.  Barely one-dimensional.  The fight scenes were confusing.  On multiple occasions, I thought there were more people involved in a fight than there actually were.

At a running time of 79 minutes, it was kind of amazing how slow this movie felt.  And that was with two pretty graphic sex scenes thrown in.  I'd say roughly 10% of this movie was sex scenes, which I'm pretty sure qualifies this as a softcore porn.

A scene-chewing performance by Clint Howard, Nazi vampires (including a brief glimpse of Vampire Hitler), and a hot vampire hunter could only carry this movie so far.  There were moments where this movie was pretty funny (in the so-bad-it's-good kind of way), but, for the most part, this movie was really terrible.  
Shocking, I know.

Rating: 1/5