Thursday, February 4, 2010

So Close. So, So Close.

If you've never watched a Zombie movie before, or if you're just now getting your feet wet in the genre, you should know something: There are a lot of really, really bad zombie movies out there. In fact, in a recent study, the UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television found that for every Romero zombie film there are approximately 112 horrible knock offs (I made that up, I have no idea what the actual ratio is).

To be honest and blunt, The Quick and the Undead is a Romero knock off. Accept that. It's full of zombie clich├ęs, sub par writing, and the atypical way-the-hell-over the top gory makeup you've come to expect from a low budget feature such as this. What makes this movie tolerable? What sets it apart from its brethren films like Dead and Deader (the world misses you, Dean Cain)? A great idea.

In fact, I'll go so far as to call it a fantastic idea. Nearly every zombie flick out there tries to deal with the issue of identifying the zombie uprising, figuring out what caused it, then surviving for the next 45 minutes until the credits mercifully roll. However, in this film we don't care about how it happened or why (it's mentioned, just to give you the warm and fuzzies, but it's not important), we only know that it DID happen and the world as we know it was changed irrevocably.

This movie attempts to tell the story of what happens after the fall of man, when homo sapien is replaced by homo mortus and the few surviving humans must try to piece together a life in which they are no longer at the top of the food chain. Like I said, fantastic idea. In execution not so much, but the premise alone makes this film tolerable. Featuring a loophole filled plot, yet surprisingly common sense inspired costumes (a paintball mask is actually a terrific idea in a Zombie filled world), and acting that isn't really terrible (notice I didn't say good), you should watch this movie with some buddies and give it the MST3K treatment. Or, if you don't have any buddies, watch the movie anyway. It's not great, and it has plenty of groan inducing moments (as well as a copious amount of WTF?! causing dialogue) but if you give this movie a chance I think you'll find it to be adequate for your week night diversion needs. Just ignore the so-bad-it's-amazing Clint Eastwood impression...

4 out of 10 stars.

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