Die, The Beloved Country: THE DEAD

Zombie films are a dime a dozen these days.  Any hack with a camera and some cheap stage make up seems to fancy him or her self  the modern day George A. Romero , and as such, the once terrifying, disease carrying, shambling metaphor for death has become as terrifying as a Smurf.

And then along comes The Ford Brothers', The Dead.

Set in West Africa, The Dead is a throw back to the kind of zombie film, Romero was making back in his heyday. Bleak, stark, serious and layered with political and social undertones, The Dead is a far cry from the mindless, CGI enhanced zombie movies being served up lately.  Told in a slow, deliberate manner, shot in 35 mm; The Dead has a sort of sweeping epic feel to it - frankly it's the sort of thing movie goers (especially horror film fans), don't get a lot of these days.

What starts like a  Lawrence of Arabia meets Night of the Living Dead hybrid ( a lone figure in desert garb traversing the Saharan landscape whilst dodging or shooting a few really, really, really, slow zombies) eventually  reveals itself to be the story of two men looking for hope in a hopeless world.  One of the men, Brian (Rob Freeman) is trying to  find a plane so he can leave zombie-riddled Africa and get back home to his wife and daughter in the United States) - the other man, Daniel (Prince David Oseia) is trying to find his way to a refugee camp to locate his missing son.  Both men are military, and while one is mourning the living death of his beloved country, and the other trying to find his way out, both men bond and form a kinship that is both touching and heartfelt.  Despite the hardships and the misunderstandings, they come to depend on the other and a realistic relationship is formed...again, not the kind of thing one gets in modern film very often.
If this film has a heart, it beats in the chest of  Prince David Oseia who brings such realism to the goings on.  His character is a decent man who may have been called on to do unspeakable things in the past as his nation was bled dry from civil wars, famine and disease.  However, now, when a new enemy has materialized he understands that all men and women must work together to defeat the common foe or else what's the point of living( gosh, that's a lesson for these times).   Honestly, I have never heard of this actor before, but he pretty much owns The Dead, and I am expecting big things from him in the future.
But wait a second, you kids came here for the zombies, didn't you?  Well, fear not, because they are everywhere.  As ubiquitous as flies, the pale-eyed-living-dead shamble through the forests, jungles and deserts of The Mother Land.  These flesh eaters are slow, deliberate and stealthy. No running, no screaming, just the ever constant threat of them at every turn.  Truly, some of the most eerie scenes of The Dead occur as our heroes drive through the African wilderness at night, the headlights of their car picking up views of the ever present, ever shambling zombies that litter the landscape (these scenes bring to mind Val Lewton's I walked with a Zombie) .
Another aspect of The Dead that is spectacular, is the photography.   The African landscapes are at times breathtaking, while at other times they appear stark and barren - much like the continent itself.   I for one, found myself gasping at some of the scenery it was that impressive - make of that what you will.
In the end, The Dead will probably alienate most modern audiences who have come to expect hackneyed plots, running zombies, jump cuts and gags - and that's a pity, because this is the kind of film that does not come along very often.    I can't help but wonder what Romero thinks of this one (or if he's even seen it), but I suspect that he would approve of the film, and more importantly of its message; lying deep in the soul of this dark, disturbing, (and at times) gory movie is a message about the undying spirit of human kindness and, yes, hope.


Bad Apples

Had to remove the "Top Fans / Followers" section as I had more than one ass-hat trying to promote his sex blog(s) that featured photos of underage models.  Sorry kids, but it had to be done.


Lessons Learned from CONTAGION

  • If a pretty blond offers to blow on your dice for good luck at a casino in Hong Kong, kindly defer her offer. 
  • Never eat pork in Hong Kong! 
  • Stop touching your face!
  • Typhoid Mary may look a lot like Gwyneth Paltrow.

  • Don't touch anything!
  • Don't talk to people.
  • Avoid public transportation.
  • Stay out of restaurants!
  • The beefier Matt Damon gets, the better he looks!

  • Bloggers may be the only people who will get the truth out concerning a world wide health crisis. 
  • If you work for the CDC and tell someone something in the  strictest confidence,chances are they will blab what you said to someone else in a matter of minutes. 
  • Lab monkeys will suffer if a world wide epidemic happens. 
  • Stop worrying about zombies, the living are a hell of a lot more destructive and dangerous than imaginary creatures. 

  • And finally, society may crumble, but a beefy Matt Damon will survive.


Horror Movie DILF : Paranormal Activity 3

Name: Dennis (no last name given)

Occupation: Wedding Video Photographer.

Family: Julie, girlfriend. Katie and Kristi, surrogate daughters.

Location: Santa Rosa, California

Why is he a DILF? :  Scruffy, sexy and sweet-natured, Dennis is the kind of guy who loves his girlfriend and is devoted to her two young daughters.  In fact, he's the kind of guy who will even partake of a tea party with one of the moppets.
Granted, he may not be making a lot of money as a guy who videotapes weddings; he does spend a lot of time at home, and is always ready to lend a hand. 
When things start going bump in the night, Dennis rigs his girlfriend's house will all kinds of video cameras (including one he attaches to an oscillating fan base) to see if he might be able to capture some evidence of what is happening. 
That he nicely fills out a pair of jeans, is merely a plus. 
Unfortunately, Dennis comes to an untimely end while trying to protect his girlfriend's kids when he runs afoul of some Satanic hijinks.

Played by: Chris Smith