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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

The movie isn't too bad and Zoli is cute as usual.

Author: rockybottom from Syracuse, NY
26 October 2000

This movie is not too shabby. The scenery is magnificent. Zoli Marki turns in another one of her brilliant, brown-eyed performances (she could have been the South African Lara Flynn Boyle). The rest of the cast is okay, but as things go with these "international" productions you can't pay too close attention to the accents (you might ask why, for instance, is the dad American, the mother English, and the two children South African). The main villain looks like a lost member of the Village People and wears a tight leather outfit with "Big Man" spelled out in studs across his back. As in THE DEMON (another film made by the same director and crew), the blood is orange.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Post-Nuke Survival, South African style (8 out of 10)

8/10
Author: dominion76251 from United States
15 August 2011

I didn't track down this rare flick till last year, but am I glad I did. This one stands as a strong entry into the post-nuke genre. The plot is simple: after the nuclear war, small pockets exist where the radiation levels are low enough to sustain life. These areas are known as "Survival Zones". The story follows the lives of a family on a farm, trying to eek by after "the big one". This is definitely a B movie, and the acting less than stellar, but it makes up for it in spirit. I really liked the overwhelmingly positive attitude displayed by the father. This is just what would be needed to get through a situation as dire as this. He was the glue that held his survival unit together. What really hurt the movie was the budget. There was no footage of any devastation: flattened cities, burnt-out buildings, nothing. No money for special effects here, like radiated zombies, etc. The only way you know what happened is from dialog. This hurt the overall impression of how bad the aftermath of World War III would be. They only make one trip to a city for supplies, and it looks normal, just abandoned. The heavies in the movie are leather-clad cannibalistic bikers (a bit cliché, no doubt). I'm not sure what the significance of the plastic baby doll parts on his helmet and clothing was!? If it was supposed to be scary, it wasn't. Nevertheless, the realities of kill or be killed in a lawless world are presented quite clearly, and provide a lot of food for thought.

As far as I know, this never made it to DVD, so you will be forced to locate a used VHS on online, but it will be worth the search. If you can look past the numerous small flaws, it is a solid flick.

If you like these types of movies, also check out The Aftermath, Def Con 4, Damnation Alley, Warriors of the Wasteland, and After the Fall of New York.

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

A solid and effective 80's post-nuke sci-fi end-of-the-world survivalist item

8/10
Author: Woodyanders (Woodyanders@aol.com) from The Last New Jersey Drive-In on the Left
19 September 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

After a devastating nuclear war most of the land has become contaminated by radioactive fallout. Only several scattered patches of land known as "survival zones" remain untainted. Rugged, hard-working farmer Ben Faber (forcefully essayed by dour, husky, pudgy-faced "2001: A Space Odysey" star Gary Lockwood) resides on one such area with his gutsy wife Lucy (lovely Camilla Spav), willful teenage daughter Rachel (comely brunette knockout Zoli Marki), adoring son, and feisty old buddy Uncle Luke. The Faber's peaceful existence gets jeopardized when a vicious horde of scummy, black leather-clad cannibalistic bikers led by the highly intimidating and intelligent Bigman (coolly underplayed by big, brawny, hirsute George Eastman lookalike Ian Steadman) stop by and lay siege to their house. Fortunately, nice guy itinerant loner Adam Strong (a likable turn by handsome, muscular Morgan Stevens) comes to the Fabers' aid.

The shopworn premise, basically just another rough'n'tumble post-nuke survivalist take on a classic Western movie scenario (the Fabers are clearly patterned after early settlers, with Strong as a heroic roving troubleshooter type and the bikers substituting for marauding Native Americans), doesn't promise much, but luckily the uniformly sound performances, unusually complex, well-drawn and even plausibly human characters, a welcome element of genuine humanity, Percival Rubens and Eric Brown's smart, surprisingly thoughtful and introspective script, a few unsettling oddball touches (Bigman has a severed doll's head affixed to the top of his motorcycle helmet), Rubens' capable direction, a sturdy theme which addresses how a man ought to fight for what's his and stand up for what he believes in (Ben refuses just to let the bikers destroy his farm without putting up a fight), an unsparingly harsh and savage tone (early in the picture the bikers raid a missionary and murder a bunch of nuns!), and shocking outbursts of raw, brutal violence lift this one well out of the rut. Vincent Cox and Colin Taylor's spare, stripped-down cinematography, shot on gritty film stock, gives the film a convincingly scrappy look. Only the somewhat sluggish pace and Nic Labuschagne's slushy, obtrusively overwrought score detract from this otherwise satisfyingly tense and gripping winner.

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

"I thought you were dead" "So did I" SPOILERS

3/10
Author: anxietyresister from United Kingdom
4 October 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

And with those words, our ubiquitous couple walk off into the sunset together, having just survived a spade/knife fight and an attempt on their lives with a land rover. Warms the cockles doesn't it? Except in this film it doesn't. You'll have been too busy laughing at one of the most hilarious decapitations ever seen on film and wondering what the hell happened to the little boy who vanished from the cast twenty minutes ago with no explanation. Not to mention the strange case of the American dad who has a South African accented wife and daughter, but a USA sounding son. And then there's the..

But I digress, let's get to the plot.. for what it is. Another nuclear bomb, another bunch of mutated survivors on motorbikes, and yep, you guessed it.. plenty of leather and shades to go around. They are led by the typical bearded bloke with a rasping voice and a toy doll's head on his helmet(?) We knows he's in charge because he has the word BIGMAN engraved on the back of his jacket. During the opening, him and his crew of ruffians ransack a nunnery. (Oh the beasts!!) Turns out they're cannibals who roam around munching their way through the survivors of the holocaust. But have they met their match when they try to take over a farm presided over by a resourceful farmer and his feisty family? Let battle commence!!

All thumbs and no fingers sums up this little flick. Every single scene seems to be have been handled in the most clumsy way imaginable, so you get random camera angles and abrupt sudden cuts galore. You know from the budget that the acting isn't going to be the best and the dialogue won't win the screenwriter any Oscars, but it would be nice to have a few surprises along the way. Nothing in this film is anything less than predictable, from who will be the first to die (always the old guy) to the fact that the stereotypical young blonde hero who arrives on the scene in the middle will be the one to save the day. From a purely artistic point of view I've seen much worse even in the last month, but why waste time on this when there are so many other superior movies out there calling for your attention? In fact, some of them are probably on television right now. Go and take a look.. 3/10

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

The Horrible Zone...Beware, You've Been Warned!

1/10
Author: levelheader99 from United States
29 March 2007

Another of the endless Mad Max ripoffs, and this one ranks with the stinkinest of all time. I don't mind a few stinkers, and I love the campiness of these late 70's/early 80's post-nuke films, but this is probably the worst film I've seen since Blair Witch 2. After a WWIII holocaust, we look in on the lives of a few survivors who are about to cross paths. We have the scum biker gang, the all-American dad and child with a foreign sounding wife and daughter (who have an old man as a mock grandpa),we have the last 2 remaining horses on planet earth, a convent of nuns, and finally a loner stud lookin' for action any way he can get it.

All I can say is, all of the horrible clichés are in affect. Absolutely nothing happens for about the first 50-55 minutes except a lot of garbage talk about the way things were and how retarded man is for destroying everything. The rest of the film cannot be considered action, horror, or science fiction in my opinion. You just have to make a whole new genre for films like this and call it the Sh*t genre. You could fit this 90 min. film into a 25 min. TV show package.

The editing is horrible also, and you have the feel that some scenes (including the ending) needed more extensions onto them to help tell the story, but I have a feeling this would just prolong the pain of viewing it even more. Please be warned, there's a good reason why less than 30 people have rated this film.

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4 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Promising, but ...

8/10
Author: helfeleather
18 August 2002

This like it's going to be a good slasher at the beginning, when in the second scene, Bigman defeats another bikie in a jousting match with chains, then soon after another of his gang punches a nun to death, but it goes very quiet after that and never picks up.

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2 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Quite simply the worst film I ever saw

4/10
Author: Paul Turrell from London, England
22 August 2001

I was thirteen when I saw this film. Some friends of mine were big fans of horror films. I wasn't particularly a fan but I knew what to expect. "Survival Zone" wasn't at all what I expected. I have a soft spot for this movie and would love the opportunity to see it again. But I'm afraid to say that is because I distinctly recall it as being the worst film I ever saw. I mean....the doll's head on top of the motorcycle...is that supposed to be scary? Evidently it was supposed to be. It wasn't.

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