The Zombinator-Braaiiins…or the lack thereof
Oh, boy. Another zombie flick.
Don’t let the cover fool you; it’s not about zombie-robots from the future that have traveled back in time to kill the future leader of the human resistance. There is no way in the world this movie could ever aspire to be that truly awesome.
Also, let’s remember that the “Found Footage” film is now actually considered a subgenre. That, itself, is just a sad state of affairs. As much as I love Paranormal Activity and The Blair Witch Project, found footage is getting kind of stale and, frankly, unbelievable.
This movie does not help the decline.
It hits the f**king gas.
The film opens with no title card, and we discover that we are watching a fashion student shoot a documentary on fashion styles around Youngstown, Ohio. Things go to hell fast when they attend a wake for a friend who died in Afghanistan and are besieged by zombies.
Okay, so getting right into the action. Let’s see where this goes.
Straight to Hell, that’s where.
The main character, Nina, escapes with her friends and they spend the evening dodging zombies as they make their way to their old school, which is abandoned. Through this, we see clips of a mysterious man in a black trench coat and shades (at night) shooting down hordes of the undead.
Blues Brother with anger issues?
The group meets up with a paranormal research team inside the school, but they all get attacked and separated. Three characters die at that point, but the man in the coat saves the rest of them and takes them to an empty room somewhere in the school.
He explains that they are in the middle of a crossfire between himself and rogue soldiers who are trying to secure a serum that causes “zombie-ism.”
What the hell, dude. Just because you added “ism” doesn’t make it legit.
One of the girls tells the trench-coat guy that he looks like the Terminator. I’m sorry, but this dude does not look anything like the Terminator. Actually, he looks more like that lonely guy that goes to cons dressed as the Terminator because he thinks that the shades hide the fact that he’s trying to look up Sailor Moon’s skirt.
Anyway, Nina takes the token wimpy dude who loves her and leaves to search for her boyfriend, who got separated from the group. While they’re gone the rest of the characters in the room are attacked and eaten by a horde of zombies.
Nina and skinny kid run into the Colonel, an old guy from the beginning of the film who talks to them during the wake. As it turns out, their buddy who died was part of the team developing the zombie serum. The Colonel is really the bad guy who’s trying to turn everyone into zombies so he can sell the vaccine for a fortune.
The Colonel ends up killing both of them as…wait. WTF?! Really?! The main characters are killed off? How much longer is this?!
Oh, about fifteen, twenty minutes. No main characters. WTF.
Okay, at this point ALL of the fashion designer people are dead EXCEPT the camera crew, who follow the Zombinator to an old mill. He has his final showdown with the Colonel. They fight, and even though the Colonel stabs our hero about fifteen times, our guy still manages to kill off the bad guy.
Okay, I have to be honest, here. This movie wasn’t…terrible. It had flaws, major flaws that needed real attention. The lighting was bad, the camerawork (even for a Found-Footage Film) was awful, and the acting was sub-par at its best.
The movie was shot in four days without a script. No, really. No script. The entire film was just shot and made up as they went along, and it shows.
The make-up wasn’t bad, really. For an indie film, they did a decent job making the zombies look good. They also acted like zombies. Not a stretch, but it was still better than the main actors.
Considering that every line in the movie was made up on the fly, they did what they could. But, as a person with a degree in theater, I can tell you that improvisation is drilled into us and is an art. Some are excellent at improv, such as the masters on Who’s Line is itAnyway. Others, not so much. If these people had actual training in theater, then they have no excuse.
I have one burning question: WHY DIDN’T THE ZOMBIES EAT THE CAMERA GUYS?! I mean, really! These guys are just standing there filming while hordes of flesh-eaters rush by, and none of the deadheads give them a second’s thought. I understand suspending my disbelief, but at some point, I have to call a truckload of horse s**t.
Also, this movie breaks a SERIOUS cardinal rule. The main character DIES. No, don’t give me that “stick to Michael Bay movies” bulls**t. Yes, main characters can die, but not until the END of the film! You don’t whack your main ten to fifteen minutes before the credits roll, then finish the movie with a supporting character!
It would be like J.K. Rowling killing off Harry Potter in book six, then writing The Deathly Hallows from Ron Weasley’s viewpoint.
Yup. Went there, big time.
In truth, this isn’t the worst movie I’ve ever seen. It had a good premise, a decent make-up crew, and a possible storyline that just needed a little tweaking. In truth, calling the movie The Zombinator is one of the things that screwed it up. If you want to see a halfway decent indie, give it a try and just be forgiving of A LOT.
Check out the video review on facebook.com/fail-flix!