action, comedy, horror, movie, movie review, zombie movie

July 15th, 2017 Movie – Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse.

scouts guide to the zombie apocalypse

I love how sometimes you can just look at the title of a movie and just know it is going to be absolutely ridiculous. Well, that is exactly what I thought when I saw a trailer for today’s movie on another DVD I own. Just from the trailer, I knew that this was going to be a juvenile mix of stupid high school comedy with some horror and T&A thrown in. At the time, I actually found myself craving a bit of mindless entertainment so this pretty much wound up fitting the bill. Needless to say, I have since learned that I should not go on Amazon while half asleep and drunk, but let’s see exactly how good or bad this purchase wound up being as I watch today’s movie, Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse.

The plot: At a research lab, a janitor is listening to his headphones while he is working and heads into a lab to mop the floors but the scientist tells him not to touch anything before he leaves to get a snack from the vending machine. The janitor notices a body in a curtained area and as he examines it, it twitches, causing the janitor to jump back into the heart monitoring machines. When the body flatlines, the janitor tries to do CPR but his hands end up going through the man’s chest, just as the man turns into a zombie and tries to attack the janitor. The janitor tries to get away but the zombie catches up to him and attacks him, while the scientist is oblivious to what happens but he ends up getting attacked by the now zombified janitor. At the local high school, Scout Leader Rodgers is trying to get some new recruits but nobody wants to join. Rogers then speaks with the three members of his scout troop, Ben, Carter, and Augie, and gives them their assignments for their upcoming camping trip, where Augie will be awarded the prestigious Condor Badge. As Carter and Ben are heading home, Carter is telling Ben that they have to tell Augie that they want to ditch scouts but Ben says they can’t tell him this weekend because it will kill him. The conversation stops when they notice a deer in the road just before Ben hits it with his car. After checking the deer, which was killed by the impact, Ben goes to check his car and discovers he has a flat tire. Ben works on changing it when Carter sees a car approaching and waves it down, as it is his sister Kendall, her friend Chloe, and Kendall’s boyfriend Jeff. Ben has a crush on Kendall but since she has been friends with Carter for so long, she just sees him as another little brother. While Carter talks with Jeff and Chloe, Kendall asks Ben how the recruiting went and he tells her that no one joined because they think it is a joke but she says she is impressed they stuck with scouts for this long. When Kendall mentions the deer is gone, Ben heads over to the spot that it had been lying then starts heading towards the side of the road to look for it. He is startled by Carter, who was given the location for a Super Secret Senior Party, and they wave as Kendall and the others drive off. As Ben drops off Carter, Carter convinces him to sneak out of the camp out and go to the party. Meanwhile, Scout Leader Rogers is hiking in the woods when he is attacked by the deer, which has become a zombie. He manages to kill it by stabbing it in the eye with his knife but he is then attacked and bitten by the scientist. Later that day, Ben picks up Carter and they stop at the liquor store to try and get some beer. Carter gives a bum outside $20 to get some beer but when he sees the bum grabbing anything but beer, Carter rushes in to try and stop him. Meanwhile, Ben sees Denise Russo, a former student at their school that now works at the strip club across the street, leaving the store when the strap on her purse breaks, dumping all of her stuff on the ground. Ben helps her pick it all up, then ties a not in the strap so that she can still use it. The two start talking and when she sees their predicament, she goes back in the store and buys the beer for them, then heads over to work. Ben and Carter arrive at the camp site to find Augie already setting up the campsite but there is no sign of Rogers. The three scouts continue setting up camp and having fun, though Augie does get down when he thinks about his dad. That night, Carter wakes up Ben and they head towards the car when they find Roger’s knife and Ben sees tracks that indicate that he was hurt but Carter says he probably went back home to tend to his injury. Reaching the car, Ben still feels bad about leaving to go to the party and feels worse when he turns on his headlights to find Augie standing in front of the car. Ben and Carter get out and try to talk to Augie but when Carter says that they want to quit scouts, Augie tells turns around and heads back to the camp, telling them to have fun at their party. Ben and Carter drive through town and notice that it appears deserted, which is odd since it is Friday night. Carter has Ben pull into the liquor store to change clothes but as Ben notices the store’s door has been smashed, Carter sees that the bouncer isn’t at the door of the strip club and convinces Ben that they should go inside. Ben and Carter head inside and while Carter goes to the ATM, Ben sits at the end of the runway and watches as a stripper approaches. As the stripper goes through her routine, she tries to bite Ben but backs off as Carter appears and starts using the money he got to “make it rain” on her. The stripper proceeds to climb up the pole but as she hangs upside down, her throat tips open, spraying the boys with her blood just as the bouncer, appears and charges at them. The boys try to run but find the door is locked and they are forced to hide, with Carter jumping behind the bar while Ben runs into the bathroom, with the zombie bouncer following after him. Carter gets attacked by the stripper but he ends up killing her by shoring a broken bottle into her skull, while Ben is saved by Denise, who kills the bouncer. Meanwhile, Augie has also left the campsite and makes his way to Rogers’ house to see if he is there and discovers it is a shrine to Dolly Parton. Back at the strip club, Ben and Carter ask Denise what is going on but they see the shop keeper approaching and after she shoots it and he gets back up, she shoots it in the head and they realize they really are zombies. When more zombies approach, they get in Ben’s car but as they try to drive away, his tire comes off the car and they are forced to put it back on while Denise holds off the zombies, then they drive off. They reach the police station, where they see a notice about an evacuation, but when the zombies show up, they quickly head inside. They encounter a zombie police man, who is wildly firing his pistol, and after Carter kills it, the zombie horde breaks into the station and they are forced to head downstairs and lock themselves in a cell. Back at Rogers’ house, Augie encounters the zombie Rogers and is chased down into the basement, where he manages to set Rogers on fire before knocking him unconscious with an oar, then tying him to a chair. Augie makes his way to town and sees Ben’s car in front of the police station, as well as all of the zombies, so he turns Ben’s stereo on loud in order to lure the zombies outside but accidentally sets off a car alarm as he tries to sneak by them. Augie finds Ben and the others and picks the lock to the cell and they all manage to escape the station and get away from the zombies. As they are walking down the highway, they see a truck and start moving towards it when they encounter the bum from the liquor store. Seeing the Britney Spears shirt he is wearing, Augie, along with Carter, starts singing “…Baby One More Time” to the zombie in order to distract it before it is shot in the head by Corporal Reeves. As they drive to the checkpoint with Reeves, he tells them what he knows about the zombies but when Ben asks about the people at the party, he doesn’t know anything about it. They head to the address that Jeff gave them but learn he sent them to the wrong place. Augie finds it ironic and the three scouts end up arguing and fighting but as Denise watches in disbelief, she notices that Reeves was bit and he suddenly turns. Hearing her screams, Ben and the others help her out of the Humvee, where she proceeds to kill Reeves by slamming the door on his head. When the radio suddenly comes alive, they hear that the military is going to bomb the city in two hours. Carter suggests going to his house to get Kendall’s diary, as she writes everything down in there. Seeing all of the zombies in front of the house, they quietly sneak in the back and head upstairs, unaware that Carter’s neighbor, Miss Fielder, has seen them and follows them in. As they search Kendall’s room for the diary, Ben hears a noise and Denise tells Carter and Augie to go check it out. While they are gone, she talks to Ben about his crush on Kendall and helps him build up his confidence by having him kiss her. Downstairs, Carter sees the back door open and shuts it, then tells Augie that Ben didn’t want to leave the camp site but Augie’s feelings are still hurt. As they go back upstairs, Miss Fielder attacks Carter, whose screams alert the other zombies and one of them crashes through a window to attack Augie. Augie manages to kill the zombie attacking him, then grabs Miss Fielder off of Carter and places her on the broken window frame, allowing Carter to decapitate her with the broken window. As more zombies come in, they run back upstairs with Ben and Denise and barricade the door. Ben says they have to jump out the window but when he opens it, a zombie grabs him but he manages to punch it off of him. Seeing the trampoline below him, Ben tells them they can use it to jump over the fence and they all do but as Ben gets ready to go, the zombies knock over the dresser and he sees the diary. Ben grabs it and prepares to jump but sees the trampoline is covered with zombies, just as a zombie tries to grab him. As Ben is dangling over the trampoline, Denise climbs back over the fence to lure the zombies off the trampoline, allowing Ben to safely drop onto it and jump over the fence. Sneaking into Miss Fielder’s house, Carter suggests using her car but as they make their way through the house, they are confronted by her zombie cats and barely manage to make it into the garage. Ben drives through the garage door and they see Scout Leader Rogers in front of them and he is forced to hit him with the car as they make their escape. Reaching the outskirts of town, they see a dirt bike on the side of the road and Ben helps Denise get it upright, allowing her to go and alert the military about the party and get help. Ben, Carter, and Augie head back to town to save the kids at the party but first, they break into a hardware store in order to arm themselves. At the party, Chloe and a guy named Travis sneak away to a private area to fool around but the both are attacked by a zombie. At the rave, Kendall is worried about Carter and the others and Jeff admits that he gave them the wrong address. Kendall slaps him, causing Jeff to shove her but he then gets attacked by a zombie Chloe. Kendall tries to run but when she opens the doors, she sees the zombie horde approaching and runs as they burst into the room and start attacking the kids inside. Suddenly a whistle is heard and everyone turns to see Ben, Carter, and Augie at the top of the stairs. The three scouts make their way down the stairs and start killing the zombies, rescuing Kendall and as many kids as they can. As they start running out of ammo and gas, Ben has Kendall and the others run, then locks the door, trapping the scouts in the building with the zombies. Racing up the stairs to the gym, they find themselves trapped and Augie reveals that he built a bomb, so they prepare to sacrifice themselves to kill the zombies. Before Augie lights the bomb, the scouts all apologize to each other when Denise shows up, revealing a way out. Augie lights the bomb as they all slide down the garbage chute and the bomb blows up the building and kills the zombies inside. As they celebrate, the see Scout Leader Rogers close by and they look for a weapon to finish him off when a grenade lands at his feet and explodes as the military finally arrive. At the evacuation center, Ben thanks Denise for saving them and asks if they can hang out, as he feels like the four of them are now a team. Denise says sure but says Ben has something else to take care of, motioning towards Kendall as she emerges from a nearby tent. Ben heads over to Kendall, who says she is glad he is ok, and he kisses her, which she willingly accepts. As they are kissing, Augie and Carter are watching and Augie jokingly gives him a hard time about Ben kissing his sister, to which Carter says he has no choice but to have sex with Ben’s mom in retaliation.

Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse met with slightly negative reviews from the critics, holding a 45% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse fails to live up to its intriguingly wacky title, instead delivering yet another zombie comedy-thriller with a tired T&A twist.” The scene where the guys use a trampoline to escape from the zombies is actually from a Super Nintendo game called “Zombies Ate My Neighbors”, where the player uses a trampoline to travel from garden to garden. The movie was a box office dud, earning $16.1 million off of a $24 million budget.

Yep, this is just what I thought it would be; some silly, zombie killing fun with a splash of T&A. The acting was pretty decent, with Tye Sheridan (Ben), Logan Miller (Carter), Joey Morgan (Augie), and Sarah Dumont (Denise) all doing a great job. David Koechner was also made for some good comic relief as Scout Leader Rogers. The story was a little weak, as they left some gaps that would explain how the zombies got into the city or how the town was evacuated but more importantly, how the animals ended up infected. The special effects and make-up for the zombies was a lot better than I was expecting and they obviously had some fun with some of the zombies, especially Scout Leader Rogers and all the trauma he suffered. It’s no Shaun Of The Dead, but this can give you some laughs while getting your zombie fix in.

Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5

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comedy, horror, movie, movie review, sci-fi, zombie movie

May 19th, 2017 Movie – Return Of The Living Dead: Rave To The Grave

return of the living dead rave to the grave

We have come to the final entry in the Return Of The Living Dead series. The movie was filmed right after Return Of The Living Dead: Necropolis and debuted on Sci-fi the same night as Necropolis. Now when this debuted on Sci-Fi, I actually did not manage to see it that night and it would actually wind up being several years later before I got a chance to watch it. So let’s see how this series ends with today’s movie, Return Of The Living Dead: Rave To The Grave.

The plot: One year after the events from the previous film, Charles Garrison meets up with some Russian government officials at a mortuary with the intent of selling one of the drums of Trioxin to them. The Russians want to test the Trioxin first and have Charles take the drum inside the mortuary, where the mortician has three bodies available. Charles attaches a hose and releases the gas onto one of the bodies but when it doesn’t appear to the work, one of the Russians thinks Charles is trying to trick them and uses the gas on the other bodies. As the bodies start to come to life, Charles is killed, along with the mortician and one of the agents, while the other two agents kill the zombies and leave. Julian, now a freshman at college, gets word of Charles’ death and heads to his uncle’s house to start cleaning out some of the stuff when he discovers a hidden room in the attic just as his girlfriend Jenny shows up. They enter the room and discover the two remaining drums of Trioxin and try to figure out what it is. They grab one of the drums and head over to a party that Jenny’s brother Jeremy to find Cody to get his help in figuring out what is inside. Meanwhile, the two Russians, who are actually Interpol Agents Aldo and Gino, break into Charles’ house and find the other drum but when they notice that there was another drum stored there that is now missing. Back at the college, Cody examines the liquid from the drum and says it’s chemical make-up is similar to ecstasy. Hearing that, Jeremy decides to dip his finger in the liquid and try some and Julian, Jenny, Cody, and Shelby watch as he starts to seize, then go into a catatonic state before quickly coming out of it. Julian tells Cody to disconnect the drum as he plans to get rid of it since they don’t know what that stuff is and Cody says he will in the morning as it is after 4am. When Julian and Jenny leave, Cody, Jeremy, and Shelby work on extracting more of the liquid and placing it in pills, which they then sell to Skeet, the local drug dealer, who begins selling them across campus. Cody and Julian see someone acting like Jeremy did when he tried the liquid and realize that Cody lied to them so they head back to the chemistry lab and chastise Cody for his recklessness. Julian takes the drum to the genetics lab, where Jenny plans on running some test on the liquid. That night,  two frat boys that bought some of the drugs, take too many pills and end up turning into zombies, then chase their fried through campus. Along the way, they end up scratching Becky as she is getting in the car with her boyfriend Artie and she ends up turning and killing her boyfriend as they are parked by a lake. As the two zombies continue to chase their friend, he is starting to feel the effects of the drugs himself and ends up running into a room where a band is practicing. The zombies kill the guitarist but the drummer stabs through the eyes with his drum sticks while the other kid decapitates the other zombie with a guitar. Aldo and Gino arrive at the crime scene and then go question Julian about Charles’ death and his house. Julian says he doesn’t know anything and closes the door but Aldo believes Julian is hiding something and tells Gino they will follow him. Julian leaves with Jeremy to help him set up for his rave that night and Jenny heads to the genetics lab to run tests on the liquid. At the rave site, Jeremy is complaining about a cough and Cody suggests seeing if Skeet has anything. They see him tripping nearby when suddenly a zombie Becky and Artie show up and try to attack him. The two are restrained by Jeremy and Cody and they have two stoners drive them to the emergency room. As they are driving along the highway, Becky and Artie get free and attack the stoners and Aldo and Gino use a bazooka to blow them up. Back at the genetics lab, Jenny places some of the liquid inside the water bottles for the lab rats, despite the objections of Brett, who ends up getting bit by his pet rat Mr. Sticky. While Jenny goes to her study group, Brett tries to open the canister but notices his bite looking infected so he leaves, not realizing the canister opens after he leaves. Brett goes to his dorm, where some friends are there and ends up attacking them, then the four students begin attacking some other students but Aldo and Gino arrive and begin shooting them. Meanwhile, Jenny returns to the lab to find the canister opened and calls Julian and Cody, who show up. When they see that the rats have all escaped, they work on finding them when Julian sees some zombies approaching. The three manage to kill the zombies but notice Tarman at the top of the stairs when Aldo and Gino show up and begin shooting at him, driving him off. When Cody admits to making using the liquid to make a drug to sell to Skeet, they all head to the rave to try and stop people from taking more Z and becoming zombies. Jenny heads up to the DJ booth to find Jeremy but he has already turned and tries attacking her but ends up falling out of the booth. As more people start turning and attacking people, Cody manages to save Shelby but he ends up getting killed by Skeet. Julian saves Jenny and she is forced to kill Jeremy when he attacks them. Aldo and Gino find the remaining pills on Skeet’s body, then call in reinforcements. As a helicopter arrives and begins firing into the crowd to kill the zombies, a missile is fired which kills everyone in the crowd. Julian and Jenny manage to get to safety before the missile hit and as they look around, they see Aldo, who suggests they leave before the military arrives. Meanwhile, Tarman is seen on the side of the highway with a sign reading “Rave or Bust” and when nobody picks him up, he begins walking along the highway towards where the rave is located, calling out “Brains” as he walks.

I am little conflicted regarding this movie. On the one hand, it felt like they tried to go back to some of the slapstick humor that made the first movie so much fun, but on the other hand, some of their attempts at humor just felt stupid. The acting was ok but John Keefe (Julian) still just felt to weak to be the male lead. The story was good and a pretty interesting way to showcase a new way of becoming zombies. The special effects were pretty decent and the comedy was good at times, with Claudiu Bleont (Aldo) and Sorin Cocis (Gino) making for some good comedy relief. Not the best way to end a series but it is a decent zombie movie to watch.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

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comedy, horror, movie, movie review, sci-fi, zombie movie

May 18th, 2017 Movie – Return Of The Living Dead: Necropolis

return of the living dead necropolis

The perils of getting old and not keeping up with things like you used to. Once again, I came across a movie on TV that I honestly had no idea was even made. So while channel surfing years ago, I stopped on Syfy channel, back in the days where it was Sci-Fi and showed all sorts of awesome B-movies, and this movie happened to be on. I was surprised that I hadn’t heard this movie was being made and even more surprised that this movie had been intended to be released theatrically but an edited version wound up being released on Sci-fi early. So let’s see how things turned out with today’s movie, Return Of The Living Dead: Necropolis.

The plot: 10 year after the last zombie incident was dealt with, Charles Garrison is travelling to Chernobyl with some Russians, Boris and Nicholai. When they get there, the two Russians that accompany him take him to the heart of the facility, where three drums of Trioxin are being kept. Boris sends Nicholai upstairs to get the other three drums but when Nicholai reaches the room, he notices one of the drums has fallen over so he sets it upright but ends up with some of the Trioxin on his hands. When Boris goes to see what is taking Nicholai so long, he is attacked by Nicholai, who has been turned into a zombie. During their struggle, Boris’ gun is knocked from his hands and Charles picks it up just as Nicholai bites into Boris’ skull and kills him. When Nicholai turns his attention towards Charles, Charles shoots him in the head. Some time later, Julian and Jake “Pyro” Garrison are living with their uncle Charles after their parents died in a car crash. After school lets out, Julian and Pyro go hang out with some of Julian’s friends as they ride dirt bikes when one of them, Zeke, crashes after jumping a ramp and is taken away to a hospital due to his being unconscious. Meanwhile, Charles, working for a company called Hybra Tech, has been doing experiments with the Trioxin gas, reanimating a severed arm. As he continues experimenting with the gas, reanimating a corpse this time, some of the gas escapes through the pipes and ends up infecting a homeless man and a rat he was cooking, which attacks another homeless man as he is eating it. Julian heads to the hospital to check on Zeke but is told by the doctor that he suffered a reaction to the painkillers and died. Meanwhile, Zeke’s ex-girlfriend Katie works at Security for Hybra Tech and sees Zeke being brought to Hybra Tech and calls Julian to tell him. When Julian asks Charles about it, he lies about Zeke being there so Julian, Katie, Cody, Becky, Mimi, Carlos, and Darren work at a plan to break into Hybra Tech and rescue him, unaware that Pyro is watching them. Julian, Becky, Cody, Carlos, and Darren ride their dirt bikes through the sewer system and get into the building through the loading docks, taking out the two homeless men turned zombies on the way. Meanwhile, Katie disables the security cameras while Mimi distracts Hector, the other security guard. As Katie uses a radio to give them directions, the group make their way through the ventilation system when they discover that Pyro followed them. The group reach Charles’ lab, where Charles confronts them and denies knowing anything about Zeke but Carlos pulls a gun on him and forces him to show them where he is. As the make their way along the corridor, they ask about the zombies that are being kept there and Charles says it is part of their research. When they reach Zeke, Carlos is forced to shoot the lock to open the door, causing an alarm to go off. They manage to free Zeke and Cody discovers another room where Hybra Tech appears to be cloning their own zombies. Carlos tells Julian to ask Charles about his parents and when Julian presses him, Charles admits that Julian and Pyro’s parent’s bodies are at the facility. Charles manages to get away from the kids and the group goes to leave but Katie, while trying to shut off the alarms, accidentally releases the zombies from their enclosures. Darren is killed and Zeke is bitten as the group manage to escape, then arm themselves with some guns from a security room outside Charles’ lab. Meanwhile, Katie turns the cameras back on to see if she can find everyone and sees the zombies attacking people. She goes to get Mimi and Hector but as they are trying to leave, Hector and Mimi are killed by some zombies. Julian and the others are making their way through the ventilation system when a zombie tries to attack them through the grate and causes Julian, Cody, and Carlos to fall to the floor. After killing the zombie, they tell the others to go ahead and get out of there, then Julian says he is going to go find his parents and Cody and Carlos agree to help. Making their way towards the building his parents are in, Julian, Cody, and Carlos fend off the zombies but Carlos ends up getting killed by one of them. Meanwhile, Becky, Pyro, and Zeke make their way to the garage and manage to steal a car but as they are trying to escape from the zombies, Zeke succumbs to the bite and turns into a zombie and then tries to attack Becky, causing them to crash. Julian and Cody reach the bioweapons lab and discover that Julian’s parents have been turned into cybernetic zombie soldiers. When they leave the lab, they find themselves surrounded by zombies and make their way to the roof, where they use the ropes they brought to rappel down the building, but Charles heads into the lab and proceeds to activate Julian’s parents and sends them after the kids. When Julian and Cody reach the ground, the run from the zombies there but are suddenly confronted by a zombie Mimi and Hector. Julian grabs a gun from a fallen security guard and reluctantly goes to shoot her but the gun is empty. Before they are killed, Katie slams into Mimi and Hector with Humvee and yells at them to get inside, then takes off. Elsewhere, Becky and Pyro are trying to fend off the zombies when Zeke tries to attack Becky again but Pyro pushes her out of the way and ends up getting killed instead. When Zeke approaches her, Becky grabs Pyro’s homemade flamethrower and uses it to set Zeke on fire. Katie and the others show up and Julian is upset at seeing Pyro is dead but the others drag him into the truck and they drive off. As they go to leave, they encounter Julian’s father, who uses the twin gatling guns on his arms to shoot up the humvee. Becky uses a grenade she grabbed to blow up Julian’s father, seemingly killing him but as they run past, he is shown to still be moving. The group encounter Zeke and Julian’s mom, and Zeke attacks Julian while Julian’s mom attacks Cody and Becky. Becky manages to trick Julian’s mom into using her chainsaw hand to cut through a power line, causing her to electrocute her self while Julian pulls the pin on the grenade Zeke had with him, blowing him up. The police arrive and proceed to kill the remaining zombies at Hybra Tech, even Julian’s father when he gets up and attacks the kids again, but Katie was killed by Julian’s father. Later, Charles is seen leaving Hybra Tech with the Trioxin while a news caster reads a statement from Hybra Tech saying there was not a zombie outbreak but an accident occurred that did result in some deaths. As the newscaster turns it over to sports, a zombie suddenly attacks him as the camera cuts off.

All things considered, this wasn’t that bad of a movie. The acting was ok, with Peter Coyote doing a good job as Charles but John Keefe (Julian) just came off as weak and whiny. The story was interesting, keeping some aspects of the original series intact, mainly the Trioxin gas turning people into zombies and their craving brains, but some other aspects were off, mainly that the zombies appeared weaker and were able to be killed by chest shots as opposed to head shots only. The special effects honestly looked a little weaker than I expected but the zombie makeup was pretty good, especially with the burned Zeke zombie. The cyborg zombies of Julian’s parents were interesting but I honestly felt like they were trying to imitate Nemesis from Resident Evil: Apocalypse but it came across as cheap looking. It has some faults but it is a decent zombie movie at times.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

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action, horror, movie, movie review, sci-fi, zombie movie

May 17th, 2017 Movie – Resident Evil: The Final Chapter

resident evil the final chapter

Just when I get back to my normal schedule, I have a pre-order come in. Oh well, it is what it is. So at beginning of the year, the latest, and supposedly final, movie in the Resident Evil series came out. And just like all of the previous movies in the series….I did not see it in theaters. A part of me does kind of feel bad about that because I really did enjoy these movies, for the most part. Well, let’s see if this series went out with a bang, or a whimper as I watch today’s movie, Resident Evil: The Final Chapter

The plot: Years ago, Dr. James Marcus, the founder of the Umbrella Corporation, was trying to find a cure for his daughter Alicia, who was suffering from a rare aging disease. He finally creates the T-Virus, which repairs damaged cells, and it succeeds in saving Alicia’s life and he thought this might be a cure for other diseases as well but there were unforeseen side effects. When an incident on a cable car at Raccoon City occurred, the Umbrella Company quickly covered it up and Marcus wanted to close down the project but his partner, Dr. Alexander Isaacs refused and has Albert Wesker kill Marcus. Isaacs becomes Alicia’s guardian in order to control her 50% of the company, then creates the artificial intelligence called The Red Queen to help him control the company. At the end of the previous 5 movies, Alice and the last of humanity was making their stand in Washington DC against a horde of undead monsters. Now, DC lays in ruins as Alice emerges from the rubble of the White House and stumbles towards the reflecting pool. As she gets a few drinks of water from the pool, she is attacked by a zombie but it’s leg is caught in a chain so she is able to get away. As she continues to explore, she is attacked by a flying monster but eventually manages to kill it by crashing a jeep into it, pinning it to a building, then setting off a claymore mine. As Alice lays there catching her breath, the air raid sirens go off, then suddenly stop and Alice can hear an old printer running somewhere. Following the sound, Alice discovers an old computer system and finds herself confronted by the Red Queen. The Red Queen tells Alice that there are less than 5000 people on the planet and they will all be wiped out in 48 hours. She then tells Alice that Umbrella had developed an airborne anti-virus that would destroy the T-virus around the world, destroying the zombie horde, but she has to go back to the Hive in Raccoon City to retrieve it. Alice says she doesn’t trust her and the Red Queen says she understands and tells Alice that Wesker, who had betrayed Alice in DC, is at the Hive and she will explain everything when Alice gets there. Alice starts to make her way to Raccoon City but her car is disabled by a spike strip. Seeing a motorcycle abandoned nearby, Alice heads for it but notices it is an Umbrella Corp. motorcycle and starts to back away, suspecting a trap. When a soldier appears, Alice finds herself caught in a snare as more soldiers appear to capture her but she is able to kill them all, but then is shocked into unconsciousness by the motorcycles’ anti-theft device. When Alice comes too, she finds herself inside a large armored vehicle and confronted by Isaacs, whom Alice thought she had killed but realizes that she only killed his clone. When Isaacs realizes that Alice knows about the anti-virus, he has her tossed out of the vehicle and forces her to run behind it, with a large zombie horde chasing after her. Isaacs then contacts Wesker and tells him he caught Alice heading for Raccoon City and has Wesker increase the Hive’s defenses. Alice manages to get onto the vehicle and kills two soldiers before Isaacs confronts her. As they fight, Alice spies another motorcycle and quickly cuts off Isaacs’ hand so that she can activate and rides ahead of the two armored vehicles that are heading to Raccoon City. Wesker and the Red Queen see Alice approaching the city and Wesker says to ready their defenses and activate their agent inside Raccoon City. As Alice makes her way through the city, she finds herself captured by a group of human survivors, who are prepared to kill her but Alice is saved by Claire Redfield, who vouches for Alice. After Claire explains what happened to her after the battle on the Arcadia, Alice tells them that an army of zombies is being led to the city by Isaacs and says that his vehicles will destroy the tower they are in, leaving them easy prey for the zombies. One of the group, Christian, doesn’t trust Alice but the group’s leader, Doc, says that he does. After Doc treats Alice’s injuries, Alice tells Claire about the cure but Claire doesn’t believe the Red Queen and asks Alice to help defend the tower. Alice agrees and they manage to use the resources they have to fend off the zombies, while also taking out one of the armored vehicles. As Alice incapacitates the second vehicle, she goes looking for Isaacs but finds that he has escaped, then uses the vehicle to lure the zombies away, but they discover two more armies of undead approaching. Realizing they only have one choice now, Alice leads Doc, Claire, Christian, Razor, Abigail, and two more survivors to the Hive. As they get close, they are attacked by the Hive’s first line of defense, a pack of mutated dogs, which manage to kill Christian and one of the survivors but Alice and the others make it inside the Hive. Once there, the Red Queen appears at a console and informs Alice that after the T-Virus was created, Isaacs held a secret meeting where he planned to release the virus to wipe out humanity, while a select few would survive to rebuild a perfect society. When the video was uploaded to the Red Queen’s memory banks, this created a conflict of interest as she is unable to harm an Umbrella employee but was programmed to value human life. The Red Queen makes Alice aware of the time, then has her don an ear piece, where she tells Alice that one of the group is an Umbrella spy. As the group make their way through the hive, Abigail is killed when she gets sucked into a giant turbine, while the other survivor falls through a floor trap as they make their way through the air ducts. Alice and Claire end up falling through separate traps, with Alice landing in a room filled with dead bodies. As she looks around, Razor suddenly drops into the room but as they start to move, Razor is killed by a new monster, which then attacks Alice but she manages to kill it. As Alice catches her breath, Doc shows up and they continue towards the cure. When they reach a corridor, Alice recognizes it as the laser corridor and heads into the control room where the weapons and explosives that Shade and Rain’s team had left there. Handing Doc a gun, Alice uses the computer console to take them down into the lower levels of the Hive, where they see the cryogenic storage chambers that contain the Umbrella Corp’s high command, as well as the super rich and powerful, who were placed there to wait out the apocalypse. Meanwhile, Isaacs has commandeered one of the approaching armored vehicles and drives it over the edge of the pit, then starts leading the zombies towards the Hive. Back in the Hive, Claire manages to escape the cell she is in but is captured by Wesker. Meanwhile, Alice and Doc place explosives in the cryogenic room and then head for the board room, where they are confronted by the real Isaacs. Isaacs explains that the person Alice met was another clone, then has her drop her weapon or he will destroy the anti-virus, which he is holding in his hand. Alice drops her weapon, then turns to see Doc pointing his gun at her, revealing him to be the spy. As Wesker shows up with Claire, Isaacs then introduces Alice to Alicia Marcus, telling Alice that Alice is merely a clone of Alicia, which is why she has no memory of anything before the events at the mansion 10 years ago. Alicia informs Isaacs that she still owns 50% of the company and though she can’t do anything to him, Wesker is an employee so she promptly fires him, allowing the Red Queen to sever his legs by closing the security door on them. Doc tries to shoot Alice but his gun is empty, as Alice had figured out he was the spy, and she knocks him down, where Claire proceeds to shoot him. Alicia says they are running out of time and the Red Queen gives Alice and Claire a route to catch up to Isaacs and the two leave, with Alice stopping to place a dead man’s switch for the explosives in Wesker’s hand. Alice and Claire catch up to Isaacs and start fighting with him but Isaacs is able to overpower them, knocking Claire out. As Alice continues to fight with Isaacs, they end up in the laser corridor and Isaac’s grabs Alice and hols her hand out, and the lasers sever her fingers. However, Alice had managed to grab the anti-virus and place a grenade in Isaacs pocket instead, which explodes and kills him. Checking on Claire, Alice heads up to the surface to release the anti-virus but Isaacs, clinging on to life, shows up to stop her. Suddenly, the clone Isaacs shows up and when he sees the real Isaacs there, has a mental breakdown and stabs him, before falling victim to the zombie horde. As the zombies approach her, Alice smashes open the vial, and the zombies proceed to collapse to the ground, along with Alice, while inside the Hive, Wesker finally dies and releases the switch, causing the explosives to go off and kill Alicia and the frozen Umbrella heads. Alice wakes up to find Claire standing over her and wonders how she managed to survive. They find a control node for the Red Queen and she explains that the virus killed the T-virus in Alice’s body, but left the healthy cells alive. She also tells her that Alicia downloaded her memories as a gift for Alice, giving her the childhood she never knew. With the anti-virus in the air, the cure will take time to reach across the world, so Alice continues to head out and fight the undead, as she heads towards Manhattan with a group of flying monsters on her tail.

Resident Evil: The Final Chapter met with negative results from the critics, holding a 35% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “Resident Evil: The Final Chapter may prove mind-numbingly chaotic for the unconverted, but for fans of the venerable franchise, it offers a fittingly kinetic conclusion to its violent post-apocalyptic saga.” During filming, Mila Jovovich’s stunt double was severely injured when a camera crane malfunctioned and didn’t rise out of the way, causing the motorcycle she was riding to crash into it and causing her to be in a medically induced coma due to the extent of her injuries and necessitating her left arm to be amputated at the elbow. The movie was the most successful of the franchise, earning $312.2 million off of a $40 million budget.

This was a great way to end a series of movies. The acting was good, with Mila Jovovich (Alice), Ali Larter (Claire) and Ian Glenn (Isaacs) doing great jobs in their roles. The story was good, with the reveal that Alice was merely a clone all this time being a nice twist. I also liked how they had Alice show more humanity than Isaacs, who wanted to lead his own perfect world of humans. The special effects with the zombies and creatures were pretty good, though some of the fight scenes were a little over the top. A long running series definitely went out with a bang and did a good job bringing the series to a close.

Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5

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horror, movie, movie review, romance, zombie movie

May 16th, 2017 Movie – Return Of The Living Dead 3

return of the living dead 3

Another day, another zombie movie. Now today’s movie is one that I had actually chanced upon on cable back in the day, and honestly didn’t know that a third movie had come out in the series. I only got to watch a little bit of it at the time but I was curious enough to rent it so I could watch the whole thing. So let’s see if today’s movie was as entertaining as I remember as I watch Return Of The Living Dead 3.

The plot: At a top secret army facility, Colonel John Reynolds is escorting a corpse that is being carried to a secured room when he meets up with Colonel Peck, who introduces him to Col. Sinclair. Reynolds says he heard about Sinclair’s research involving an exoskeleton to contain the corpses and make them more effective in combat but feels his approach is still better. As they reach the room, Reynolds must use one of the soldier’s key cards as he apparently misplaced his at home. Meanwhile, Julie Walker is hanging out at the beach with her friend Mindy and some other friends when her boyfriend Curt Reynolds shows up. When Julie asks about it, Curt reveals that he stole his dad’s key card and heard that a big test was occurring that day so they decide to head to the base. After getting on base, they sneak inside the building his dad works in and make their way up on top of some containers, which they notice are sealed up to be air tight. After seeing a man burning body parts in a furnace, they head over to another container and see Curt’s father overseeing an experiment. A corpse is strapped into a suspension harness and then a hose is attached to a drum containing a zombie, which allows them to release the Trioxin gas from the drum and reanimate the corpse. The scientists then shoot the zombie with a special round containing a paralytic agent, successfully rendering the zombie immobile. Curt and Julie are shocked at what they saw and when they accidentally attract the attention of a patrolling guard, they quickly leave before they get caught. Meanwhile, the scientists place the zombie on a tabe and start to examine it when it suddenly bites the fingers off of one of the scientist, then proceeds to bash his head against the glass of the control room, eventually killing him. The other two scientist shoot it again and manage to strap it onto the table, but the scientist that was bitten suddenly turns and crawls over to the table and bites one of the other scientists. Reynolds orders the room to be sealed as Peck demands to know what happened. Sinclair says she will make the call to Washington, as she told the general that she would give her opinion on the project. At his house, Curt and Julie are having sex but Julie can’t stop talking about what they saw. When Reynolds comes home, he tells Curt they need to talk and has him come into his office. Reynolds tells Curt that he is being reassigned to Oklahoma City and they leave in a week but Curt refuses to go, saying he wants to stay with Julie. As the two argue even more about it, Curt storms off and tells Julie they are leaving. As the two are riding on Curt’s motorcycle, Julie is teasing Curt and making him lose control of the bike and when he swerves to avoid hitting a semi, they end up wrecking and Julie is thrown into a telephone pole. When Curt goes to check on Julie, he discovers that she is dead and he calls out for help but there is nobody around. Grief stricken, Curt heads back to the facility and makes his way inside to the room where they saw the experiment. Putting on a biosuit, Curt tries to hook the hose up to the drum to release the gas but when that doesn’t work, he simply pries off the lid of the drum. The gas revives Julie and as Curt explains what happens, they hear something and discover that the zombie that was inside the drum has revived and tries to attack them. They manage to get away but as they are leaving, a guard sees them but he is attacked and killed and Julie asks if that is what she is going to become. As they watch the video footage of what happened, Peck tells Reynolds that he put a state wide APB out on Curt and Julie, and they have a containment team standing by. They theorize that due to the strong bond between Curt and Julie, Julie won’t attack Curt yet but that could change when her brain shuts down. Meanwhile, Curt and Julie are trying to leave town but Julie has Curt stop so she can get some food. Heading inside a market, Julie starts grabbing some food items and eating them but quickly spits them out. As Curt tries to get Julie to stop, he accidentally pisses off a group of thugs that were playing a game at the back of the store. As the store owner goes to ensure no fighting occurs, one of the thugs hops the counter and starts emptying the cash register. When the owner pulls a gun out to stop them, the thugs manage to shoot the owner with his gun. As they are leaving, Julie bites one of the thugs in the arm so they shoot Curt’s bike before they leave. Hearing sirens on the way, Curt and Julie go to leave but when they see his bike is ruined, they get in the store owner’s van. The owner appears and asks that they drive him to the hospital and Curt agrees, just as the police arrive and start shooting at them. As they drive off, the police follow and keep shooting at them, killing the store owner when he tries to get them to stop. Curt manages to lose the police but when he turns around, he sees Julie eating the brains of the store owner and he gets her to stop. The police eventually find the van and approach it and end up attacked by the store owner, who kills one of the cops. Reynolds and the containment team show up and manage to stun the store owner before he kills the second cop but they find no sign of Julie or Curt. Curt and Julie are making their way through the sewers and Julie starts stabbing and cutting herself, saying the pain helps her feel better. Curt and Julie argue and Julie moves to jump off the rail of a bridge and Curt apologizes for what he said but Julie says that he shouldn’t have brought her back, then jumps off the bridge into the water below. Meanwhile, the thugs that were at the store go looking for Curt and Julie, as the man that Julie bit is getting sicker. At the same time, Sinclair shows up, having managed to push ahead her taking over of the project and orders no discrimination when it comes to containment but Reynolds defies her orders and goes looking for Curt. Curt makes his way down to the river and encounters a homeless man called Riverman, who saw what happened. and as they search the river, they find Julie’s body. Just then, the gang shows up and Riverman leads Curt and Julie into the sewers and has them hide in his home. As Julie lies down, Riverman asks Curt what is going on and Curt tells him that the gang shot someone and is now after them. Riverman goes to keep watch and when Curt asks how he can repay him, Riverman hands him a coin and says that if he sees someone in need, he should help them, then give them the coin, always paying it forward. Julie and Curt have sex and afterwards, Julie begins shoving nails and other items through her body, making it so that the constant pain will help keep her in control. Meanwhile, the gang find Riverman and begin torturing him to find out where Curt and Julie are. Curt goes out to help them but they overpower him. Just then, Julie emerges and Curt is shocked at what she has done to herself. Julie seduces Santos, the gangs leader, and ends up killing him, then kills another gang member, while the female gang member is killed by the gang member that Julie bit. As the gang members come back as zombies, Riverman, Julie, and Curt take shelter in Riverman’s home, then Curt and Riverman work on barricading the door. When the zombies star to come through, Curt tells Riverman to take Julie and leave while he holds them off but when he meets up with them, he finds that Julie has killed Riverman. As the zombies start to attack them, Reynolds and his team show up and manage to subdue the zombies, then Reynolds tells Curt to move so they can shoot Julie and he reluctantly does, then holds her as the paralysis kicks in. At the facility, Reynolds attempts to come up with some sort of reconciliation with Curt but is unable to answer when Curt asks about Julie, saying she is part of Sinclair’s project now. As they are leaving, they are stopped by Peck and Sinclair, who ask Reynolds not submit his report on Julie, though Reynolds argues with them that Julie shows they are able to retain their memories. As Curt wanders through the facility, he comes to the room where Julie and the other zombies are being kept. When the scientist says they are going to be turned into bioweapons, Curt goes to free Julie, knocking out the scientist in the process and attracting the attention of Sinclair and two other scientists, who are working on placing Riverman in an exoskeleton. The distraction allows Riverman to go free and he begins attacking the scientists and Sinclair, eventually causing the other zombies to be released. Curt manages to get through to Riverman and has him help them escape the room but as they try to get out of the facility, a zombie manages to bite Curt. As the whole building undergoes lockdown, Curt and Julie see Reynolds, who is trying to keep a door open so Curt can escape. Curt tells his dad that he can’t leave as the door shuts and Peck drags Reynolds away before he is trapped inside the building. Curt and Julie head to the furnace room and Curt activates the furnace, then they both step inside, with Curt saying they are where they belong as they kiss one last time before being burned.

Return Of The Living Dead 3 met with mixed results from the critics, holding a 44% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. While there isn’t a critical consensus on the site, the critics that liked it said it was a fun bit of “schlock comedy” while the ones that didn’t like it called it boring and inept. According to director Brian Yuzna’s commentary, the studio did not require the movie to use the same actors or have the same comedic effect but the did want the zombies to eat brains. The movie only got a limited release in theaters, where it ended up flopping, only earning $54,207 of a $2 million budget.

Yeh, I honestly don’t know what to think of this movie. There were some good parts and some bad parts to this thing. The acting was ok, with Melinda Clarke (Julie) and J. Trevor Edmond (Curt) doing a good job in their roles. I also liked Sarah Douglas (Sinclair), but wish that she had a larger part than she did. The story was interesting, having some elements from the previous two movies, primarily the involvement of Trioxin and the zombies desiring brains, but unlike the previous movies, this time the bites would turn people into zombies. The main plot line of Curt and Julie’s relationship made for an interesting driving force for the movie but did get a bit overly sappy at times. The special effects were pretty good, as was the makeup for Julie when she turned herself into a zombie pincushion. There are better zombie movies out there, but at least this was better than the second movie.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

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comedy, horror, movie, movie review, zombie movie

May 15th, 2017 Movie – Return Of The Living Dead: Part II

return of the living dead 2

You know, a lot of times when I watch a sequel, I know it probably won’t be as good as the original but I at least keep an open mind about it. When it comes to today’s movie, this is one of the rare times where I absolutely hated the sequel. Idon’t honestly know why but I just never really liked it and every time it would come on TV, I would generally switch the channel. So if I hated this movie so much, why would I get it on DVD, you ask? Well, I tend to be a glutton for punishment at times, and also a bit of a completionist. So let’s see if maybe time has changed my view of today’s movie, Return Of The Living Dead: Part II.

The plot: In 1969, a chemical company was contracted by the US Army to conduct some experiments with a chemical called 245-Trioxin but it was determined to be too dangerous and all of the chemical was supposedly destroyed. In 1988, a military convoy  is transporting several drums through a town but some of the drums accidentally fall off the back of one of the trucks and fall into a nearby river. The next day, a young boy named Jesse Wilson gives two bullies, Billy and Johnny a comic book and they decide to initiate Jesse into their club, despite his protests that he doesn’t want to join. They take Jesse to their clubhouse, which is a mausoleum inside a cemetery but when the try to force Jesse inside, he manages to get away from them and runs out of the cemetery. Billy and Johnny find Jesse hiding in a storm drain but as Billy grabs Jesse, Johnny finds one of the drums from the truck. The three kids examine it and when Billy opens the domed cover, they are scared to find a body inside the drum. Jesse says it belongs to the army and should let them know about it but Billy and Johnny lock him inside the mausoleum before heading back to open the drum. Meanwhile, Ed, Joey, and Brenda arrive at the graveyard, where Ed has hired Joey to help him rob some of the graves while Brenda waits in the van. Ed and Joey enter the mausoleum and Jesse is able to get out, with Ed yelling at him as he does. Jesse returns home and tries to sneak past his sister Lucy as she is exercising but she sees him and tells him that their mom left him a list of things to do and the first one of them is his homework so she sends him upstairs to do it. Meanwhile, Billy and Johnny continue to mess around with the drum and when Billy pushes some buttons on a control panel, he ends up venting the gas from the drum, which makes them sick. The gas seeps across the ground of the cemetery like a thick fog as it suddenly starts to rain. Inside the mausoleum, Joey is starting to have second thoughs about helping Ed when he notices the gas but Ed merely passes it off as swamp gas. Meanwhile, Col. Glover arrives at an area where he sees two men in hazmat suits examining the other containers that had fallen off the truck for leaks and worries that they might have another situation on their hands. Back at his house, Jesse sees Billy and Johnny returning to the neighborhood and goes to sneak out while his sister is on the phone but just as he reaches the door, the doorbell rings. Jesse hides while Lucy answers the door to reveal Tom Essex, who is there to install their cable. Tom recognizes Lucy from school and attempts to flirt with her and while they are distracted, Jesse is able to sneak out. Jesse goes to Billy’s house and convinces his mom to let him see Billy, who she says is sick. When Jesse gets to Billy’s room, he asks what happened and Billy tells Jesse not to tell anyone. Jesse then goes to the storm drain and, wearing an face mask and safety goggles to protect himself, writes down the number on the side of the drum. As he is about to leave, he sees the Tarman, which had escaped from the drum, and he quickly runs as it calls out that it wants his brains. Jesse escapes the Tarman but as he makes his way through the cemetery, he sees a hand coming out of the ground and continues running. Meanwhile, Brenda gets tired of waiting and gets out of the van to find Ed and Joey but she encounters some zombies and manages to punch one in the face, crushing it. Inside the mausoleum, Ed and Joey are taking a break, with Ed starting to cough and complain of chills, when the corpse next to Ed suddenly raises from it’s tomb. Joey bashes it in the head with a crowbar but when that doesn’t kill it, the two quickly run, running into Brenda as they try to escape the cemetery. Jesse runs back home and tries to explain what happened to Lucy but she is angry at his sneaking out and takes him to his room, then ties the door knob to the banister so he can’t get out. Jesse sets off a smoke barn to trigger the smoke detector and when Lucy opens the door, he quickly runs into their parents room to use the phone. Lucy asks Tom to help her and he goes to get some tools from his van but Ed, Joey, and Brenda steal his van as he walks back inside. As they are arguing over where to go, they end up hitting one of the zombies and knocking out the phone lines, just as Jesse got through to Glover. As they get out, they see the zombie eat the brains of one of the neighbors that had gone to check on her and they run for it, following Tom as he goes back to the house to call for help. When they are all inside the house, Joey starts to feel sick as well just as the severed head inside the bag Ed is carrying starts moving. Everyone screams and Tom stabs the head with a screwdriver and throws it into a closet. When Jesse is attacked by another zombie, Tom and Lucy save him and push a china cabinet against the door. Jesse recommends that they head to Dr. Mandel’s house, as he has a car, and they all head out while Tom stays behind to try and fend off the zombies when they break into the house. When one of the zombies attacks Tom, he is able to get away when the zombie is distracted by Lucy’s aerobic video. Meanwhile, Billy’s mom tries calling the hospital but can’t due to the phones being dead so she yells for her husband but finds him missing. When she goes outside to find him, she sees a group of zombies feeding on his brains and she quickly runs inside and hugs Billy, who had gotten out of bed, but Billy has turned into a zombie and bites into her head. The group make their way to Mandel’s house and break into his garage and as they try to get the keys to the car from him, more zombies start to attack the house. Taking Dr. Mandel with them, they all pile into his car and burst out of his garage and make their way out of the neighborhood but as they do, Jesse sees Billy is part of the undead mob. The make their way to the emergency room to try and find help but find it deserted. Mandel begins examining Ed and Joey while Jesse, Lucy, and Tom go try to find help. As they make their way through town, they notice it is completely deserted, even the police station. Escaping another mob of zombies, Lucy directs Tom towards her grandparents house and they head inside, where Lucy grabs some guns from the cabinet for her and Tom, while Jesse grabs a pistol for himself. They return to the hospital and Mandel shows them that Ed and Joey are essentially dead and recommends containing them. Meanwhile, Jesse sneaks off and heads down to the lower levels where the communications room is but is attacked by a zombie. When he shoots it, the sound attracts Lucy and Tom and they go down to help him but are unable to kill it, despite Lucy blowing it in half with a shotgun, so they head back upstairs. Brenda grabs Joey and tries to leave, with Ed going with them and steals Mandel’s car but they are stopped by a group of soldiers, who were there to evacuate the town. As Brenda tries to explain what is going on, Ed dies but comes back as a zombie and kills one of the soldiers and the other soldiers leave, as does Brenda and Joey while Ed continues to feed. Joey transforms in the car and tries to attack Brenda but she escapes and runs into a church. Joey follows her and chases her around before she falls and finally lets Joey eat her brains. Meanwhile, Tom and the others grab an ambulance to try and get out of town but along the way, they see the zombies attacking and killing the animals in a pet store and Tom hots one of the zombies with the ambulance, sending it into a lighted sign which electrocutes it and actually kills the zombie. As they continue out of town, they find the bridge blocked off with razor wire and the army on the other side starts firing at them. As they try to figure out their next move, Jesse tries to call for help on the ambulances CB but they only get a zombie that tries to trick them into coming to the hospital. Tom heads to a meat packing plant and Lucy, Mandel, and Tom head inside to begin grabbing the cow brains and load them onto a truck while Jesse is to stand watch outside. When Jesse hears a car driving around, he goes to flag it down but runs when he sees it is a bunch of zombies driving it. As he runs from the zombies, he is rescued by Tom, who chastises him for running off and says they have to work together in order to survive. As Tom drives the truck, Mandel and Jesse start tossing the cow brains out into the street, luring the zombies towards the power plant. When they reach the plant, Tom shuts the security gate, then turns the power off so the can set their trap to kill the zombies. Jesse and Lucy begin spreading brains around on the wet ground while Tom rigs the power lines from the nearby junction box to electrocute the puddles in the ground. Billy climbs over the fence and opens the gate, allowing the zombies to enter the ground and Jesse, Lucy, and Tom are forced to hide in the back of the truck. Tom has Jesse slide out the window over the truck cab and start the truck, having him drive towards the plant so he can tell Mandel to turn on the power. As Jesse drives to the building, he sees Billy and he hits him with the truck before crashing through the wall. Jesse gets out of the truck but is attacked by Billy, who tries to kill him but Jesse stabs Billy through the mouth with a screwdriver and knocks him off the railing. Back outside, the zombies are starting to break into the truck and Lucy tells Tom that she remembers him from school and the two start to kiss. Jesse quickly heads upstairs and turns on the power, electrocuting the zombies outside. Billy reappears and tries to kill Jesse again, just as one of the transformers crashes down from the roof. Mandel, who had been hiding inside the building, distracts Billy, allowing Jesse to shove him into the transformer and electrocute him. As Jesse, Lucy, Tom, and Mandel leave the power plant, the soldiers arrive and begin using flamethrowers to destroy the zombie’s bodies.

Return Of The Living Dead: Part II was completely panned by the critics, holding a 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. There isn’t a critical consensus on the site, but the critics all seem to feel like this movie tried to reuse the same elements that made the first movie so popular, and failed miserably. James Karen and Thom Mathews returned in this movie, playing characters that were almost exactly like the characters they played in the first movie, and would have several lines that were just like their lines in the first movie or would make subtle references to what happened in it. The movie was a small hit at the box office, earning $9.2 million off of a $6.2 million budget.

Well, this movie still annoys me but it wasn’t entirely as bad as I used to think. The acting was ok, with Michael Kenworthy doing a good job as Jesse. James Karen and Thom Mathews were pretty funny as Ed and Joey but everyone else was kind of bland. The story was honestly unoriginal and really felt stupid several times. There were also several silly moments in the movie that were just gratuitous, such as the Michael Jackson zombie that was electrocuted at the end of the movie, which was a blatant reference to “Thriller”. The special effects were pretty good and honestly the only real redeeming part of this movie. All in all, some people might like it but I am honestly completely let down by this movie.

Rating: 2 out of 5

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comedy, horror, movie, movie review, zombie movie

May 14th, 2017 Movie – The Return Of The Living Dead

the return of the living dead

I think I said this before, and am honestly too lazy to double check this, but just in case I didn’t, here is a brief history lesson. Waaaayyy back in the day, a book came out written by George A. Romero and John Russo called “Night Of The Living Dead”, from which the famous movie was derived from. Years later, John Russo wrote a sequel titled “Return Of The Living Dead”, at the same time that George Romero was filming his own sequel, Dawn Of The Dead. A lawsuit wound up occurring over the rights to the title and John Russo ended up being able to keep the use of the “Living Dead” tagline. This movie is famous for being the basis for the “Brains” chant from zombies. This movie is also what made Linnea Quigley one of the most famous Scream Queens in Hollywood, with her dance in the cemetery being a rather infamous scene. So let’s dive right into today’s movie, The Return Of The Living Dead.

The plot: At a medical supply company in Louisville, Kentucky, the foreman, Frank, is showing the new employee, Freddy, the ins and outs of the business. As they are Frank is filling out shipping forms for the skeletons they are shipping out, Frank asks him what was the weirdest thing he ever saw in there. Frank asks if Freddy saw Night Of The Living Dead and when Freddy says that he has, Frank tells him that the movie was based on a real event. Frank says that they changed things in the movie to keep people from knowing the truth but due to a shipping mishap, the bodies were sent to them. Frank takes Freddy down to the basement and shows him the drums containing the bodies and Freddy is surprised to see there actually are bodies in them. When he worries about the drums leaking, Frank says they are made by the army and bangs on the side of one of the drums but the drum bursts and releases a gas into the air that renders the two men unconscious while the body inside the drum starts to melt. Elsewhere, Colonel Glover returns to his home and checks in with the base, then goes to have dinner with his wife. His wife expresses her dislike for all of the equipment in the house but he says it is necessary that the base be able to reach him in case they ever find the missing drums. Back in Louisville, Freddy’s girlfriend Tina is hanging out with their friends Spider, Trash, Scuz, Suicide, Casey, and Chuck are driving around and when they have 2 hours before Freddy gets off work, they break into a cemetery across the street to hang out. Freddy and Frank regain consciousness, feeling sick from the gas, and notice the body is gone from the drum. As they make their way upstairs, they hear a dog barking and realize that the gas has revived the split dogs that they sell to veterinary schools. As Frank tries to kill it, they hear screaming coming from the freezer and realize that the gas brought the cadaver inside back to life. Frank locks the freezer, then calls Burt, the company owner, and has him come back to the warehouse. When he gets there, Burt yells at Frank for messing with the drums then decides to get rid of the evidence so there won’t be any sort of investigation. Handing Frank a pick-axe, Burt has Freddy open the freezer and tell Frank to smash the cadaver in the head when it comes out. When Freddy unlocks it, the cadaver rushes out and attacks Burt but Frank and Freddy pull it off of him. Burt grabs the pick-axe and swings it down into the cadaver’s head, pinning it to the ground but the cadaver is still alive. Burt attempts to kill it by cutting it’s head off with a bone saw but the body continues to move, thrashing about the warehouse so they tie it up. Trying to figure out how to destroy the body, Burt notices the light is still on at the mortuary across the street and decides to take the body over there, where his friend Ernie has a crematorium they can use to burn it and he proceeds to cut the body into pieces with the saw. They carry the pieces over to the mortuary and try to pass them off to Ernie as rabid weasels but when he gets suspicious, Burt shows him one of the arms, which grabs onto Ernie’s leg, and after they get it off him and back into the bag, Burt proceeds to tell Ernie everything. Ernie starts up the furnace and proceeds to burn all of the bags that Burt and the others brought over, but the smoke makes it’s way up the chimney and mixes with the clouds, causing a toxic rain to start falling. In the cemetery, all of the kids get back into Suicide’s car except for Tina, who had gone to the warehouse to get Freddy. Back in the mortuary, Burt is happy to see everything had been burned up but Frank and Freddy find themselves violently ill and Ernie calls the paramedics to come check them out. Meanwhile, Tina goes is looking around the warehouse and heads down into the basement to look for Freddy when she encounters Tarman, the melted body from the drum, which screams out “Brains” when it sees her. Tina tries to run out of the basement but when one of the steps breaks and she falls through the stairs, she hides herself in a metal cabinet. Meanwhile, the roof of Suicide’s car starts leaking so the group head for the warehouse and hear Tina screaming. When they head down to the basement, they see the doors to the cabinet being ripped off by a hook and chain and when Suicide goes to see who did it, Tarman grabs him and proceeds to bite through his head into his brain. Spider and the others quickly head back upstairs, then barricade the door to prevent Tarman from following them before they head over to the mortuary, when Casey and Chuck say they saw Freddy heading over there. As they make their way through the graveyard, they find that the rain has seeped into the ground and caused the bodies in the graves to come back to life and make their way up through the ground. The group split up, with Tina, Spider, and Scuz heading towards the mortuary, while Casey and Chuck head back to the warehouse, but Trash gets separated from the others and ends up being killed by the zombies. Meanwhile, the paramedics arrive at the mortuary and start examining Frank and Freddy but discover that they don’t have a pulse or any blood pressure and their body temperature is room temperature. The paramedics head out to get some stretchers so they can take them to the hospital but as they get in the ambulance, they are attacked and killed by zombies. Tina, Spider, and Scuz reach the mortuary and explain to Burt and Ernie that zombies are coming up out of the ground and convince them that they need to leave. Heading back into the embalming room, Tina sees Freddy and asks what happened to him. Seeing the ambulance still outside, Ernie goes to tell the paramedics that they need to use their ambulance to get out of there, he finds a zombie eating the brains of one of them. Ernie fires his gun at the zombie but when it gets up and comes at him, he quickly runs back to the mortuary. Ernie tells them that the paramedics are dead and he tries to call the police but the phones are dead. When the zombies start to break the glass of the windows, Burt, Ernie, Spider, and Scuz proceed to board up all the windows in the place. Heading back to the embalming room, which has steel shutters, Ernie examines Freddy when he complains of his joints stiffening and cramping and discovers that rigor mortis is setting in. Hearing a crashing sound, they see that the zombies have broken through one of the windows and work on fending them off but Scuz is killed by one of the zombies, which Burt ends up chopping in half. After securing the window, Ernie takes the remains back to the embalming room and ties them to a table. He then questions the zombie and learns that they eat brains in order to make the pain of being dead go away. Realizing that Frank and Freddy are getting worse, Burt suggest locking them in the sanctuary in case they try to attack them but Tina chooses to stay with Freddy. Meanwhile, a second paramedic team heads to the mortuary but the paramedics end up being killed by the zombies, as are a pair of cops sent to investigate the missing paramedics, while the rain that continues to fall resurrects Trash, who proceeds to kill a homeless person in the streets. Inside the chapel, Frank and Freddy transform and Freddy tries to eat Tina’s brains but she is saved by Burt and the others when Ernie throws some acid in Freddy’s face, blinding him while Frank makes his way out of the chapel. When they try to barricade the chapel door to keep Freddy inside, Ernie breaks his foot. Coming up with a last ditch effort to escape, Burt and Spider make a break for the police car and drive it up to the doors so Tina and Ernie can get in but the zombies swarm them and they are forced to leave without them. Realizing they had no choice but to leave them, Ernie has Tina head up to the attic with him and the barricade the hatch just as Freddy breaks into the room. Meanwhile, Frank starts up the crematorium and, kissing his wedding ring and hanging it on the lever, he crawls inside the furnace and activates it, choosing to burn himself to death rather than hurt anyone. Burt and Spider smash through the cemetery gates but when they find more zombies outside, they end up crashing outside the warehouse and quickly head inside, where they meet up with Casey and Chuck. Burt decides to call the police and let them know what is going on, but Chuck and Casey warn him that a zombie had broken into the office earlier and ripped out the phone. When Burt says there is another phone in the basement, he has Spider open the door, then knocks Tarman’s head off when he comes up from the basement. They head downstairs and try to call the cops but can only listen as the police barricade is overrun by the zombies. Burt then calls the number on the tank and ends up getting transferred to Colonel Carter. Carter gets all the information from Burt, then heads over to his special terminal, where he orders a nuclear artillery strike on Louisville. The shell hits just as Freddy breaks into the attic to attack Tina and Ernie. Later, Carter is going over the information on what happened and said that 20 square blocks was destroyed and 4000 people were killed but all of the zombies were eradicated. He says some people have complained about some irritation from the rain that has started falling but he dismisses the reports, unaware that the falling rain has caused a new batch of zombies to start rising from their graves.

The Return Of The Living Dead met with high praise from the critics, holding a 91% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. While there isn’t a critical consensus on the site, the majority of the critics expressed praise for the special effects as well as the mix of comedy and heart-wrenching moments. The movie differed from Russo’s original novel due to director Dan O’Bannon wanting to change it so as to differentiate it from Romero’s own Dead series. The movie was a box office success, earning $14.2 million domestically off of a $4 million budget and would spawn 4 sequels.

This is a great zombie movie to watch. The acting was really good, with Clu Gulagar (Burt), Don Calfa (Ernie), and Miguel A. Nunez Jr. (Spider) doing a good job in their roles. The story was pretty good, with a lot of various elements coming together to form a great story. I did like some of the tough character choices some of the characters would make, such as Frank choosing to burn himself rather than become a zombie, or how Ernie contemplated killing Tina and himself instead of letting Freddy kill them. The special effects regarding the zombies was really good and the puppetry with the half zombie that they questioned was incredible. Definitely a good horror/comedy that is well worth watching.

Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5

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