02 February 2010

Dead Snow

Ever since 28 Days Later, the Dawn of the Dead remake and Shaun of the Dead made zombie movies a hip kid thing again, I've had a love and hate relationship with the sub-genre. I loved the renewed interest it gave classic zombie/ undead movies by George Romero, Sam Raimi, Peter Jackson (who all had healthy followings to begin with) and to a lesser extent Lucio Fulci but I hated a lot of the dreck that followed (and this is sub-genre with an abundance of that to begin with).

And let's not forget that anytime a group of dipshits get access to decent cameras, take a guess what kind of movie they want to make? Yeah. And they all suck. I've endured enough of this bull shit on YouTube to definitively say these are hack jobs (no pun intended) at best. Bad make-up, acting, camera work and editing is just that kids, bad. Making a zombie movie is not a free ticket to cult movie stardom. But thanks for trying.

Anyway, after being disappointed with 28 Weeks Later and Romero's Diary of the Dead and putting myself through the utter piles of shit that were Fido and Hide and Creep, I pretty much swore zombie movies off.

And I think I'm right when I say this sub-genre is pretty much dead in terms of originality. I will say I enjoyed Zombieland but it's a lightweight affair all told. The movie will be remembered for how awesome Woody Harrelson is and deservedly so. He owned that movie and his co-stars were good, too. Still, in terms of zombie action, it's pretty soft.

So on to Dead Snow. This Norwegian film does have its enjoyable aspects. The film shares a lot more in common with Raimi's Evil Dead 2 and Jackson's early work than Romero-style zombies and not just because one of the characters wears a Braindead (aka Dead Alive) t-shirt. The film borrows a lot of elements from Bad Taste. The character who continually takes a beating and somehow survives (at least until the end) each encounter and literally has to hold himself together with common household items (the belt around the head in Bad Taste is replaced here by duct tape around the neck). There's also the "splattery" quality of the gore effects (which were one of this movie's strong points) and the reckless abandon to which the characters use weapons, ranging from a chainsaw to a machine gun.

And the film's main bad guy, Colonel Herzog, looked a bit like Bub the Nice Zombie from Day of the Dead. I'm guessing that's not an accident, either.

I also liked the POV shot of the girl watching herself get eaten. That was a pretty unique touch.

Overall, I didn't hate this film. I was entertained enough but I don't feel a real strong urge to revisit it ever again. Yeah, it's Nazi zombies and the gore is pretty cool but I guess I've just become too hard to please with zombie movies.

1 comment:

Mike said...

I want to make a correction. The movie is Hide and Creep, not Hide and Shriek. It still sucks.

Also, I forgot to mention that April Fool's Day came out in 1986. Shame on you, filmmakers (they said '83 or '84).