HAIKU REVIEW: Small towns really suck
at surviving zombie swarm
UNCOMFORTABLE PLOT SUMMARY (inspired by this): Local racism and religious fanaticism leads to complications.
PEOPLE: Produced and directed by Arabs. With the beautiful and charismatic Janette Armand as the Iranian girl. But really, nobody involved with this movie is anyone known. It’s a small, independent film, by a small production company that’s only done 2 films.
QUIRKS: Zombie comedy apocalypse terrorism, racism, gayness, fanatical Christians, coming out to your mom, post-911 hysteria. Three sets of characters, whose stories basically converge by the end of the film.
VISUALS: Decent to watch, even if watching it in HD exposes a lot of fakeness with the special effects. However, because it’s also kind of a comedy, guts that don’t quite look real sort of work — one is reminded of Troma during those moments. Still — there’s definitely some gore in here for people who want it. And a lot of blood splatter.
MORALS: Usually it’s don’t trust your government in movies like these — but actually, the government did nothing wrong here. The moral of THIS zombie movie is: Don’t trust your redneck neighbors, don’t trust the church-goers either. People hide behind their moral authority and do evil things while thinking they are good. Religion, paranoia, and nationalism are major causes of this phenomenon.
POLITICS: A big gay angle, dealing with how gay couples must act different in small towns, must fight Christian persecution, must go through major anxiety just to say who they are to their own parents. A big religious angle, showing how religioinists act completely illogically in the face of a crisis — it’s a terrorist attack, not the Rapture. A big racism angle with how people can’t deal with Arabs, and will ask an Arab person about their “home country” even if they’ve lived in America their whole life. A bit post-911 angle, with how paranoia rules the zeitgeist and makes people irrational, and how attacks are used as justification to beef up the security police state. Although this movie came out in 2009, it takes place in 2003 — making the post-911 mentality that much more relevant.
BAD STUFF: It’s political and this might throw off people not expecting it. It’s a comedy, but it’s nowhere near as funny as most comedies, because we’re dealing with the politics and the zombies. It’s also nowhere near as scary or thrilling as a zombie movie that sets out to ONLY be scary or thrilling. One could say that this movie attempts to do too much, and thus falls flat, scattered in several different directions. I prefer to look at it as encompassing a combination of aspects that I’ve never seen in a movie before, thus giving me a unique experience — even if it was far from perfect.
CONCLUSION: As far as zombie comedies go, it’s definitely no Zombieland. But it makes up for the lack of comedy with politics and thrills — this is directed and produced by Arabs, about how a small town stuck in a post-911 mentality would react to a terrorist attack that creates zombies. It doesn’t work perfectly, but it definitely works. It’s certainly better than some zombie movies I’ve already seen, such as Night Of The Living Dead 3-D.
Clint: Netflix: 4/5 stars. IMDB: 7/10.
Carolyn: Netflix: 3/5 stars. IMDB: 6.4/10. “It was OK. A little bit on the gratiutious gore side at the beginning… The political angle was kind of fun…”
RECOMMENDATION: Zombie-completists or people interested in politics should check this out.
SIMILAR MOVIES: Uh… every zombie movie? Well no, not really. Maybe a zombie movie like Fido, which also has social implications, would be a better comparison.
MOVIE QUOTE: “Ohhhh, Iraaannnn.”