Joined: 20 Sep 2006
Location: Renascence, Maine, Usa
Fresh off a fifty-mile drive from the closest theatre playing horror legend George A. Romero's new zombie flick 'Survival of the Dead,' I am more than pleased to say the time & oh-so-expensive gas was worth it. Though Lord Romero has received more than his fair share of negative feedback for his last few films ('Bruiser,' 'Land of the Dead,' and 'Diary of the Dead), I have yet to see a single film of his that I would call less than good. And, my friends, the streak continues with 'Survival of the Dead.' Sure, I may not be the most unbiased of critics on the matter, but we're all hooked to something.
'Survival of the Dead' focuses on two sets of very different characters. The first we're introduced to is led by 'Nicotine' Crocket (Alan Van Sprang), the jerk "guardsmen" that first appeared in 'Diary of the Dead.' He wasn't a central figure in the previous film, but just one of the many dangerous obstacles the main characters from 'Diary' stumbled across during their journey. Crocket leads a group of other guardsmen around the country looking for, well, anything they can find. After hooking up with a crackshot kid and an armoured car full of cash, the guard unit heads up north after their discovery of Patrick O'Flynn (Kenneth Welsh), an old Irish fella on the internet advertising a safe haven. O'Flynn, the leader of his own group, is a now-banished former resident of Plum Island, a small isle in the Atlantic. Intent on seeking vengeance against the other zombie-saving Irish clansman from the island, O'Flynn convinces Crocket's gang to head to Plum Island with him.
The first thing that many Romero fans will notice is something that had been missing in the 'Dead' series before this film: a recurring character. Crocket, the antihero and occasional narrator of the new film, wasn't the worst choice Romero could make for a recurring character in 'Survival of the Dead.' Alongside Crocket, there is a varied mix of supporting characters from the horny lesbian Tomboy (Athena Karkanis) to the equally horny token minority Francisco (Stefano DiMatteo). One of the major problems most people (including myself) had with Romero's last film was the acting. In this film, the acting was pretty much satisfactory, with only couple issues (DiMatteo being a major issue in himself). Among the other technical aspects, the Romero-controlled factors of the film were, as expected, damn good. The direction and writing were much better than that of 'Diary,' and the beauty of the Ontario-filmed landscapes were wonderfully captured.
Unfortunately, one visual aspect that was not very good with the film was. . . what else. . . the CGI. I, unlike many horror fans, am not completely against the use of CGI. It has its uses and can actually help a film if used properly. Sure, it's almost always better with real gore effects, but the use of CGI (as Romero himself said) can greatly help a low-budget production. CGI means less time actually on set (which is the most expensive part of the filmmaking process) and it means that Romero can do kills that he had only dreamed of before. Speaking of one very memorable kill from 'Survival,' he said he had been wanting to do it for a long time, but not even the great Tom Savini could pull it off. This means CGI basically allows limitless execution of whatever the director envisions. Sadly, though, the effect is lost much of the time when CGI is used, especially when it's not very well done.
Overall, 'Survival of the Dead' is not going to please everyone, quite possibly because people are often too focused on what they think modern cinema should be, and what Romero should be offering. However, the film is a fun zombie-filled ride with a solid story and some memorable gore scenes. It does lack quite a bit in the tension & suspense of the previous films and focuses a bit too much on the comedic side, but it is still a fine addition to the zombie subgenre.
the whole family feud subplot that was going on in the middle of the chaos that was already caused by the dead returning to life was pretty pointless and just led to more dead being created quicker.
It wasn't pointless, as that was Romero's point. He was clearly making the point that the internal feuds to protect the dead will only take the lives of the already living. As you said it in your post, it clearly wasn't pointless. You should look towards the deeper meanings before you pawn something off as "pointless."
the internal feuds to protect the dead will only take the lives of the already living
the feud was going many years before we were introduced to the families in the movie. the pointless part, since you also missed that, was them continuing the feud for any reason when all it did was speed up the over-running of the island and kill them all that much quicker.
You cannot post new topics in this forum You cannot reply to topics in this forum You cannot edit your posts in this forum You cannot delete your posts in this forum You cannot vote in polls in this forum