Friday, 15 February 2013

ZMD: Zombies of Mass Destruction, Back Review

ZMD: Zombies of Mass Destruction, Back Review

Year: 2009/10
Stars: Janette Armand, Doug Fahl, Cooper Hopkins
Directed: Kevin Hamedani
Running Time: 89 mins

ZMD had to happen at some point didn’t it a piss take of dumb American stereotyping (not calling Americans dumb by the way) the way they lump everything British as England or they put everything Indian as Iraq.
That aside this film has one refreshing factor that has recently been pissing me off in the latest spout of zombie films, something I want to bring up. We live in a culture that yes we would know a zombie from a mile off now, so in media it doesn’t take long for someone to go Oh their zombie’s cave their skull in.
This movie at least to me and despite a news flash seems to take a while to come to that conclusion and you can’t even blame that it’s supposed to be an island as two of the main people in there are from New York. So that was at least was fresh in this movie and would personally like to see more of in the future the unknown horror of a risen corpse.

So with that out of the bag, this movie is directed by Kevin Hamedani who only has one other writing/directing job to his name. Made a shoestring budget of $500,000 it was part of the after dark 4 films. As with most b-movies I will mark it in that category the effects writing and acting as I always do, we’ll get to that later.
I won’t bother with the actors in this movie as they are also as obscure as the director/writer in work. So the film starts with one washed up zombie on the shore of Port Gamble, a nutty old guy comes across it and pokes it until it wakes up and infects him.
Seems the town has a pretty jaded past and people don’t seem to like each other very much either. Frida Abbas is a Princeton drop out who everyone thinks is Iraqi but she’s Iranian. One thing I quickly realised in the first 15 minutes of this film NO one is nice even if they seem to initially be decent they quickly end up having some annoying flaw.
The only exception to this rule is the one half of a gay couple Tom Hunt; well he’s the most decent at least. Another is Frida’s boyfriend despite being a loser stoner/musician seems pretty genuine. Unfortunately he ends up being zombie fodder quite early in.

After Frida’s BF gets munched and face pulled off and Tom’s mother turns from a bite after he tries to tell her he’s gay, Tom and his boyfriend escape and Frida makes it to a family’s house she met at the beginning, after hilariously losing a small girl after assuring her she’ll be fine.
The mother gets munched on and starts turning though the dad is oblivious to this though the son and Frida know, instead the dad goes nuts blaming Frida’s dads restaurant for the outbreak meanwhile. Tom and his BF are running around like headless chickens outside, Tom feels masculine after firing a pistol and his boyfriend (Lance) picks up a grass trimmer and after a few attempts starts it with a giggle.
We re-join a now tied up Frida with the guy accusing her dad and the son saying it’s not her and that mum, sorry mom is infected. The dad questions Frida on her allegiance to the USA as the mom keels over and dies.
Outside Tom and Lance are shooting and hacking up zombies and briefly think they are rescued when they see a helicopter but it’s only the news, they realise they can’t keep this up and go to hole up somewhere to no avail.
Dad starts a strange tirade of back and forth questions trying to find out why terrorists would attack Port Gamble.
Later on Frida’s quite fanatical dad goes looking for her only to find the town over run with zombies and goes looking for her. Tom and Lance go about the only place where two gay guys would not be accepted well, a church.
Frida tries to convince the son to set her free through flirting only just as he’s about to the dad comes back with a tool box. Back in the church Tom is all irate because he’s afraid of their gayness being a problem so tells lance to calm it down.
The priest flagellates that it’s the end of the world; this is where one of the other films small storylines pops its head up centre stage there are two opposing people running for mayor the one currently in office has been using the priest to help get him in.
With the priest preaching the other runner a female named Cheryl baulks at this saying her brothers good, but the other guy knows some dark secrets her reveals. Before he can fully reveal though she out speaks him and gets the others motivated to zombie proof the church we see then that the mayor has a bite on his leg.
After a foot nailing incident Frida is finally saved by the besotted guy’s son who bashes his head in with a hammer, not totally killing him. Removing the hammer from his dad head he removes the nail from her foot just as he’s eaten by mummy dearest. Frida runs as son is chowed on and dad stares on possibly dying.

Back in the church it’s become obvious the mayor has the sickness and Cheryl’s all for deciding what to do with him to the protestations of the reverend. When Tom and Lance join in the mayor makes lance open his jacket revealing his T-shirt saying I’m with him ->
The rest of the church say to throw them out, in a surprise turn around the reverend say’s no and then instantly becomes a dick again by saying we just have to convert them.
We join Frida again as she’s looking for somewhere safe to tend her foot, while she is a noise startles her and it’s just her dad whose been looking for her and he’s unfortunately worse for wear. He dies after a little heartfelt tirade but instantly comes back and attacks her, though she manages to stop him.
In a rare funny scene they try and turn the boys straight by showing a very poor black and white homo erotic film that is not very explicit or erotic, the mayor by now has changed and carnage ensues in the church.
As always I won’t spoil the ending here on THN just in case you decide to watch it at some point.

This film has a low budget but the zombie and gore and make up effects are again half decent, like I’ve said before how some films can have a budget four or five times as much as this, yet fail to produce any effects worthwhile.
Acting wise there’s no real baddies in this and lines are delivered quite well, the only problem I had with this was pacing and filler just a short film and it didn’t seem to go nowhere, which is where the budget shows only a few set pieces and locations which unfortunately makes for a relatively boring storyline that stagnates fast.
The film often tries to be funny and though there still happens to be some genuine funny bits it doesn’t work most of the time as they aren’t delivered well. Despite these flaws it isn’t a total waste of time and if you want to watch something and only this is laying around you’d be worse off doing nothing.
It’s an ok zombie movie and I give it a 2 star rating out of 5

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