Friday, September 14, 2012

Bad Movie: Survival of the Dead

Nena and I watched Survival of the Dead this week. This is the latest in George Romero's Night of the Living Dead series of movies. They've always been hit-or-miss in quality, and this one is about as far from the bull's-eye as Romero's zombie films get.

This is nowhere near as bad as Abraham Lincoln vs Zombies, of course, but it's nowhere near as good as Land of the Dead, either. The acting is spottier than in most of his movies, the writing isn't nearly as tight, and there are some serious continuity problems with its predecessors. Upon reflection, maybe it's not far above ALvZ, after all.

Most offensive, perhaps, is the tendency of characters who have been dealing with zombies for an extended period of time or have applicable training or both (and who therefore have no excuse) to do incredibly stupid things that get them bitten or completely torn to bits by zombies.

Another offense that occurs with annoying frequency is the sudden appearance of zombies from nowhere. It's not like they're stealthy, and there's usually no place they could have been hiding, but they still manage to end up standing right behind someone without warning in scene after scene. A couple of still-alive guys manage to do the same thing to one of the lead characters at one point, as well... on horseback... in the open... in broad daylight.

Yet another peeve is the FX department obviously straining to find innovative new ways to destroy zombies. We don't need a new effect for every dead zombie, guys, just whacking them in the head is okay.

It has a decent premise, but the execution is sub-par, even for zombie movies. I'd say this is at least a five-beer zombie movie (the number being the number of beers needed to make it tolerable).

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