Thursday, December 2, 2010

That’s Not a Knife Gun. This is a Knife Gun.

Dir. Michael Spierig, Peter Spierig


When a meteorite shower unleashes the zompocalypse on your ass, what are you gonna be packing? Some puny handgun? Maybe a shotgun or sub-automatic replica of an assault rifle you bought from that unhygienic man at the gun show? Get the fuck outta here with that weak ass shit, zombie food.
Australian fisherman and arms dealer Marion comes correct in the flick Undead, sporting a trio of heavy gauge shotguns wired together for maximum effect (later upgraded to a foursome for even more zombie ass kicking potential). It's just a shame that a weapon so bad ass doesn't get top billing in this surprisingly appealing flick.
And a quick word of advice: always listen to the guy hefting such a zombie-slaying contraption. Dude has already survived an attack by zombie trout. Yeah. Zombie. Fucking. Trout.
And that pretty much sums up this Down Under zomcom’s approach to undead fare. Less slapstick than something like Dead Alive or Evil Dead, Undead plays up the absurdity of being caught in a zombie outbreak as a pregnant girl and her boyfriend, a pair of dopey, incompetent cops, the local beauty queen (Miss Catch of the Day) and heavily armed fisherman Marion hole up to wait out the undead.
Their failure to just sit still and stay quiet, largely the fault of the aforementioned bumbling cops, drives their increasingly absurd efforts to escape.

Zombology: A meteorite shower rains down on the small Australian town of Berkeley, tainting the local water supply and the rain. Anyone who gets enough of an exposure gets all white eyed and hungry for brains. These muscular zombies also have the brawn to decapitate their prey with swipe or punch their way through skulls. So get the quadruple shotgun rig actually sounds like a solid investment, doesn't it? They’re also more verbal than your average zombie, moaning “brains” and “join us” in voices like a Gears of War boomer. And hey, you wouldn’t think these zombies have anything to do with the aliens that just erected a spiked wall all around the town do you?

Surprisingly, Undead was more diverting than I thought it would be despite occasionally recycling gags more than is healthy. The actors are engaging enough, the zombies appropriately grotesque and the humor is mercifully understated and unwinking. My wife, no zombie fan at all, picked it and giggled her head off the entire time. For that impressive feat, Undead only sucks 33 percent as bad as Hell of the Living Dead.

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