While we aren’t exactly slaves to our annual zombie movie marathon, we do generally abstain from watching zombie movies the rest of the year. We simply prefer to approach each film with a fresh perspective. And, as one of the most anticipated and popular zombie films of the last few years; we’re happy to report that The Dead lives up to expectations.
Seemingly the story of an Army engineer making his way across Africa in the midst of a zombie apocalypse; the more engaging tale is that of an African soldier in search of his son. The two are inextricably intertwined, of course… but the main character doesn’t seem to exist for any reason other than to advance that particular storyline. It was a fundamental problem that the writers couldn’t seem to reconcile.
Despite our misgivings over the character development, the film itself was a welcome example of competent filmmaking. A zombie movie featuring great cinematography, amazing visual effects and exceptional sound is already head and shoulders above most films of the genre. Throw in competent acting and an engaging plot, and you’ve got one of the best independent zombie films in years.
Best Scene: Death by fire extinguisher! While we all prefer a gun or machete, sometimes you’ve just gotta’ use what’s available to bash the (un)living crap out of a zombie’s head.
Worst Scene: I’m still unsure whether one of the characters followed through on a mercy killing. They had their heart-to-heart, his friend died, he aimed the gun… but then appeared to just walk away. To make things even more confusing, there was an unrelated gunshot mixed into the soundtrack a few seconds later.
Knight Industries Two Thousand: The beat-up old truck featured so prominently in the film that it really became one of the main characters. It’s no Dead Reckoning, but it definitely had some personality.
The Dead [Blu-ray]
Available at Amazon.com