The final film for my viewing in the zombie chapter of the very enjoyable Monsters in the Movies from DK Canada.
Paired with Death Proof, the film was made and released as an homage to the low budget grindhouse films of the 70s where it was all about selling tickets, and if the films could be exploitative with beautiful women, violence, breasts, blood, and gore so much the better. A whole culture rose up around the films, and this one pays homage to it, while providing a fun take on the zombie genre.
The film features a solid cast, Rose McGowan, Josh Brolin, Naveen Andrews, Bruce Willis, Marley Shelton, Freddy Rodriguez, Jeff Fahey, Stacey Ferguson and Micheal Biehn the story is happy to wallow in it’s graphic horrific and violent moments, it’s lurid sexuality, and horrible scheming people who are out to do one another over.
The story follows Cherry Darling (McGowan), an ex-stripper, who is about to have the worst night of her life, when a local army base accidentally releases a bio-toxin that turns people into… you guessed it, zombies.
The film is filled with rekindled relationships, devious doctors and their scheming lovers, infected army personnel, feuding brothers, and lots of stereotypical characters. situations, and awesome moments.
Watch for an appearance by Tom Savini and Micheal Parks playing the same sheriff he’s played in Kill Bill, and From Dusk Til Dawn – that is one cop with a rough career.
As the infection spreads, set pieces are explored, and exploded, and zombies cause all sorts of problems and horrors in this small town on the edges of the army base. A bloody, explosion-filled apocalypse follows, led by Cherry, who loses one of her legs, and replaces it with a grenade launcher equipped assault rifle.
Gross out moments, questionable life choices, and truly exploitative moments fill this film, and consequently it ends up being a helluva ride if you can enjoy what Rodriguez is doing with his film.
Lives are ruined, romances rekindled, and there are lots of guns – including in the possession of a child, and you just know that no matter how bad these characters thought it was, it’s actually a lot worse than they could know… but Cherry and her (ex) boyfriend, Wray (Rodriguez) have a plan, a determination to stay alive and maybe share a lusty/romantic encounter with one another even as the world comes apart.
It’s fun, bloody, and a great way to finish off the zombie chapter in DK Canada’s Monsters in the Movies. But hey, if grindhouse films aren’t your bag, or you’re tired of the zombie bag, we move onto ghosts next!
So pick up a copy and find something spooky and macabre to watch tonight!