STRAIN 100 (2020)

If you like your apocalyptic fiction compiled a lot of the same old tropes you’ve seen a thousand times, then “Strain 100” might be up your alley. It’s “The Walking Dead” with a convenient dash of “The Last Of Us” thrown in, and none of the real social commentary or rich character focus. For all intents and purposes, “Strain 100” has some good ideas and fun moments of zombie carnage, but it’s bogged down by so many editing and writing problems from the outset. The zombies are pretty much the best aspect of the movie, truth be told.

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The End of the Squirrel (2022)

Death is inevitable. And it’s not too often we can stare it in the eyes and welcome it with open arms. “The End of the Squirrel” is a refreshing, kind of heartbreaking take on the zombie apocalypse, where everything goes wrong and its heroes simply… accept their fates, once and for all. They’ve done everything they could do, and now it’s a matter of how they go out.

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You Have to See This! Wyrmwood: Apocalypse (2021)

Streaming On: Tubi, Vudu, Apple TV, Redbox

I for one got a huge kick out of Kiah Roache-Turner’s “Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead,” because while it was a huge departure from what I usually like in my zombie movies, he compensated with huge creativity and a great series of performances. In particular Bianca Bradey was a scene stealer as the zombie human hybrid Brooke. In “Apocalypse,” Kiah Roache-Turner and Tristan Roache-Turner shift the focus ever so slightly to a new series of characters. Sure they keep the integrity and novelty of “Road of the Dead” in tact, but this time we’re given a wider scope with a new series of villains and some bad ass zombie hybrids.

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Syfy’s “Day of the Dead” Continues The Trampling of Romero’s Legacy

When the trailer for “Day of the Dead” arrived, it looked interesting but stumped me. The trailer for the Syfy series was a fast paced dark comedy with zombies, goofy one liners, and a bunch of action. It felt more like “Return of Z Nation” rather than a throwback to Romero. This could have been given any generic title like “Zombie Warz” or “Country Zombie Jammie Jam” and never really miss a beat. There’s no reason at all to call this “Day of the Dead” and pretend it’s honoring Romero’s original movie, and it’s sad Syfy has resorted to this.

It’s all brand recognition. It’s an easy sell, an easy pitch, and has a built in audience.

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Five Questions I’m Still Asking About “The Walking Dead”

As with all good things, it come to an ends eventually, and “The Walking Dead” is finally ending in 2022. Although AMC has yet to finish finding new ways to tell Robert Kirkman’s story, the OG series is coming to a close. I have mixed feelings about it, since every year from 2010 “The Walking Dead” was an event for me.

I eagerly looked forward to it every single Sunday for so many years. Now that they’ve decided to end it, there are five lingering questions that I’ve had since Season Two. This has a lot to do with the fact that AMC screwed original show runner Frank Darabont leaving Season Two and Three to feel messy and unfocused, but they’ve yet to really offer ideas or thoughts on these questions I’m still wondering about.

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Daylight’s End (2016)

Director William Kaufman’s “Daylight’s End” is “30 Days of Night,” meets “Dawn 04” with “Assault on Precinct 13” thrown in for good measure. Sadly, while it’s nowhere near the masterpiece the aforementioned Carpenter film is, it’s silly, goofy, occasionally clumsy, fun late night movie fodder. In the heydays of cable television I could picture sneaking out of bed, and checking this out on one of the premium movie channels at three in the morning.

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Night of the Animated Dead (2021) [Blu-Ray/Digital]

The last time “Night of the Living Dead” was animated was in 2009’s “Re-Animated” where director Mike Schneider enlisted a slew of animators to offer their own interpretations of various scenes from George A. Romero’s masterpiece. That wasn’t so much a remake, as it felt more like an art installation, or a cinematic experiment that allowed us to view the classic film through various lenses and scopes, giving us unique peek in to the terrifying narrative. “Night of the Animated Dead” has a chance to feel like a unique re-imagining. Instead it picks off the corpse of George A. Romero’s “Night of the Living Dead.” Continue reading

Brain Freeze (2020) [Fantasia Film Festival 2021]

Director Julien Knafo’s zombie horror comedy is a movie that teeters back and forth between what it’s trying to say and what it’s trying to appeal to. It identifies itself as a horror comedy and injects a lot of silliness involving zombie carnage, body horror, and even some poor animals, but mid-way it stops being funny and tries to convey some kind of social commentary. What the commentary is, exactly, is beyond me, but it never improves on the overlong, tedious exploits.

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