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14 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

Everyone tries hard, but tough.

Author: capkronos ( from Ohio, USA
14 February 2002

I liked SCREAM as much as the next guy, but it's all but ruined horror films from 1996 and beyond. It's a shame to see it rub off on so many young horror filmmakers and an even bigger shame that they allow an overabundance of film references and endless blabber about various horror films to take the place of a plot and REAL dialogue. It's really a lazy way to construct a movie and really just a way to demonstrate the filmmakers know their s**t. Who really cares? And if they DO watch and love the horror films of Romero and Fulci, they'd know that nothing is worth sacrificing atmosphere, scares and a true sense of humor over. This movie is also derivative in its style- it is well photographed and richly colored in different shades, but even THAT aspect is just copycatting Dario Argento.

Everyone has already summed up the confusing "plot," of this Full Moon feature, so I won't waste time on it, just to say that THE DEAD HATE THE LIVING is made up of so many different elements from so many other zombie/horror movies that its OWN identity becomes lost in the shuffle and it doesn't quite make it as a comedy, a parody OR a horror film. However, I think some of the cast members (Jamie Donahue, Brett Beardslee..) have the potential to make an impression in the horror genre given the right opportunities.

Score: 3 out of 10.

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14 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

The living hate this movie

Author: jimbo15 from New Hampshire
16 December 2001

I write this review with serious doubts that anyone will have kept reading through all the 50-odd previous comments to get here. There is, however, the problem that this movie is getting some seriously mixed reviews here. In order to do my part, I cast my vote for "It Sucked!" and hope I can save someone the depression that follows renting a movie with glowing quotes on the box, only to wonder if those quotes weren't from the people who actually made the film.

I'll give it this; it's an educated film. Made for horror fans, by horror fans (who have a shoestring budget and no sense of continuity). Throughout the movie you'll see various references to influential directors (I saw the "Stab" poster, and as far as I know "Nails" cigarettes don't exist outside Kevin Smith movies) and various homages to previous zombie movies (like, all of them). This is, unfortunately, one of it's downfalls because much of the movie is extremely predictable. Also, the director tries to run with what works in the genre (anxiety, extra gore, handy power tools {Where the hell did that chainsaw even come from?}), but it is often executed poorly, regardless of budget. I didn't expect Citizen Kane here, but I also didn't expect a home movie made in a weekend.

For horror fans who think they can look past the directorial mishaps, think again. The zombie volume is next to nothing (2 henchmen zombies and a couple dozen shady figures in cobwebs), the special effects just remind you how crappy the film is (if someone is getting electrocuted, sparks will do nicely, we don't need this crappy cgi fireworks display that looks like a screen saver), and the death scenes are mostly tame (1. character vanishes in mist, throw bucket of blood from off camera. 2. Character has head removed, off screen. Carry crappy fake head back into scene. etc.). The irony here is that the characters in the movie were in the process of filming their own horror movie which actually looked better than the one they got caught up in.

So why did I give it a 3/10 and not a 1/10? Well hell, I can't make a movie. The effort alone is always worth something, no matter what the outcome.

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14 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

More of a bad trend.

Author: blackxmas from Georgia
2 June 2001

I'm so tired of supposedly clever, overly self-conscious horror films. I know there are generational differences and a lot of people find this type of thing humorous and hip. In the early 90's, there was a film called "There's Nothing Out There" which was about a slimy green monster from outer space killing vacationing teens at a house in the woods over Spring Break. There was a horror movie nut who bothered everybody by making references to other horror films. At the time, that seemed funny and the movie itself is a ragged, messy charmer. I believe this is the film Kevin Williamson used to help him along in writing the script for "Scream", which while I did enjoy it, has hurt the horror genre through it's lazy deconstruction of modern horror. "The Dead Hate The Living" is a bandwagon film that only goes to show that even with a larger than usual budget and good intentions (but obviously pandering to the "Scream" demographic), a horror movie you cannot make.

I do have a theory that maybe people who like horror a little too much and are too eager to please cannot make a decent, serious horror picture. I do have a problem with people who like references to Warbeck and Campbell and Fulci. Do you like being patronized? I don't think you do. Why do you make special concessions for filmmakers who obviously take the easy way out by making you feel superior because you can pick up on what are basically pop-culture references? All the horror films of the past we champion have none of these obvious references. Are we so devoid of creativity or original thought (or filmmaking prowess) that we cannot make(or get to see) a good horror film anymore? I think they got us in a box and we can't get out.

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8 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

A surprisingly good horror flick!

Author: Slasher-10 from Niagara Falls, Ny
21 February 2000

This is a surprisingly good horror flick which can be sort of viewed as an updated version of the Evil Dead. While the film doesn't really hold a candle to the Evil Dead it's a fairly good time. The Dead Hate the Living does have many flaws such as cheap visual effects, a not so threatening Rob Zombie - like clone villain, and the background plot of the film isn't completely clear, but remember this is a low budget horror film. An attractive cast, decent acting, and unendless references towards various horror films and celebrities keep the momentum going. It's quite clear that the film makers are huge horror buffs (The end is an obvious ode to Fulci's The Beyond) and any serious horror guru should at least appreciate the film for that.

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9 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

you say Homage, I say Rip-off, let's call the whole thing off

Author: movieman_kev from United States
18 October 2005

A group of young filmmakers break into an old abandoned hospital to shoot a film and inadvertently open a portal that unleashes zombies on the hapless cast and crew in this horror-comedy. Mixing horror with comedy is a VERY tricky thing. The ones that work do so amazingly well (Dead Alive, Return of the Living Dead, Re-animator, bad taste, etc...). The movies that don't work are usually total ass.This self-referential name-dropping, scene stealing film is part of the latter and ranks down there with "Dead Heat" as far as what NOT to do to succeed. Horrible acting, music, lame jokes, stealing scenes outright from far better films, dime-store special effects, and an unengaging, unoriginal story all add up to a putrid stench-filled film.

My Grade: D-

DVD Extras: Commentary by Writer/Director Dave Parker, and actors Eric Clawson, Matt Stephens, Brett Beardslee, & Jamie Donahue; photo gallery; production art; a 20 minute behind the scenes featurette; Music video; a ad for the puppet master toys; and theatrical trailer

Gripes: If you have the commentary turned on and then go to the extras NONE of them will play sound. word of warning

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11 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

and the Living hate this movie..

Author: Rob_Taylor
25 October 2004

Ewww! What a hideous mess of a film. I understand the movie was deliberately made to be bad and littered with scenes and references from horror movies, but come on! When the best line of dialogue in a film is "Hmmm. What would Bruce Campbell do?" you know its time to leave. However, luckily for you, I was paralysed with disbelief and unable to leave before it was done.

The film is just awful on so many levels. Crap acting, crap story, crap dialogue, crap make-up and crap errmm crap. The main bad guy, who resembles Rasputin, is found inside some techno-gizmo that opens a gateway to.....aaaaargh! Good God! Why am I even trying to explain this? Explanation would imply that a lot of thought went into this production, which it clearly did not.

See, the thing about truly good, bad movies, is that they don't usually know what they are. Someone made them with the thought that the film would be really good and it turned out so bad that it was just a priceless gem waiting to be watched. But with this atrocity, they set out to make a "so-bad-its-good" movie. And it just fails. Fails so awfully that it just makes you cringe to watch it.

In fact, nothing remotely like action occurs for 45 minutes. Instead we're treated to what I'll very generously label "character development". A series of scenes between the different characters that only serves to make you hate them with a passion and to highlight their lack of acting talent.

Then we get to the techno-gizmo and Rasputin and the gateway to Hell etc. etc., yadda-yadda, boring! Seeing the characters killed one by one was not nearly as satisfying as I had hoped. In fact the ultimate horror (and, in fact, the only real horror this movie offered) was the ending which hinted at a sequel, for God's sake!

Rent another zombie movie rather than this one......any one, it doesn't matter. I guarantee it'll be ten times better than this dross.

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5 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Low budget Horror filmmakers accidently re-animate a real corpse and open a dimension of other zombies.

Author: MontiLee from Royal Oak, MI
10 December 2002

Okay, so those of us that love Horror movies: we understand that even the best directors and screenwriters are influenced by the Greats - Fulci, Argento, Carpenter, Savini. What we also understand is that a great Horror movie is more than the sum of it's parts. It's more than in-jokes and snappy lines and `homages' to the above mentioned Greats.

These reasons are exactly why this movie doesn't work.

In a nutshell, this is a movie in a movie - because *that's* never been done before. A group of film-makers attempt to make a zombie movie in an abandoned hospital. Along the way they find an actual corpse, and because every film student knows that using an actual corpse as well as and breaking and entering make for excellent movies, they incorporate it into their film. Because there isn't a brain among them, and somehow the director convinces them that this is what dedicated filmmakers do, they accidentally re-animate the corpse and open a portal to a `zombie' dimension. People die, lots of blood and cranberry sauce gets spilled, and the movie ends without any real resolution.

Somehow, the director/screenwriter, Dave Parker, thought that horror fans would appreciate the absolute littering of obscure names of people in the industry and the constant barrage of scenes ripped off from other movies would make us happy. He got it into his head that we would enjoy watching re-hashed scenes and brain-numbing dialogue. Yes, Dave, I like watching characters doing stupid things because I, like you, have nothing better to do than sit in my mother's basements watching reel after reel of crappy horror movies before dashing off to our jobs at the local video store. Here's a thought, Dave - Horror fans want a movie that's scary, original - and dare I say it - fun! Not some asinine piece of crap jigged together from movies that we haven't seen in 20 years.

Then, because furthering torturing myself seemed like a good idea at the time, I watched the movie again with the commentary track, thinking that I would get some insight into why someone would waste perfectly good film on something like this, and instead I get what amounts to a circle jerk of the stars and the director patting each other on the back.

Pardon me for being harsh.

What I discovered, to my true horror, was that the director intentionally set out to make a horror movie that was bad, and assumed that his savvy audience would appreciate the cheesy lines and nods to the people he was ripping off. There were so many nods, his head was blur.

I generally like movies produced by Full Moon Pictures. After all, they gave us such tongue in cheek gems as PUPPET MASTER, DOLLMAN VERSES DEMONIC TOYS, the beautifully haunting MERIDAN, and my all-time favorite, PIT AND THE PENDULUM, starring Lance Henrikson. There is a difference between an original movie that's corny and fun and a movie that can't distinguish between `homage' and pure cat yak.

Watching this movie is the equivalent to digging out your own eyes with a dirty spoon.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Gory zombie fun for the whole family!

Author: mizziah74 from St. Louis, MO
16 February 2000

Director Dave Parker makes a credible film debut with THE DEAD HATE THE LIVING - the latest horror offering from Full Moon Entertainment. While most of Full Moon's recent releases have been tragic misfires (the awful SHRIEKER, TALISMAN & BLOODSTORM: SUBSPECIES 4 come to mind), Dave Parker and crew actually made an attempt to create a quality film that stands out as the best Full Moon release in years!

A ragtag group of low-budget filmmakers are holed up in an abandoned hospital to make the ultimate zombie film. As they begin to explore deeper inside the building, they stumble across an actual corpse and decide to use it in the film. When they accidently revive it, the lines of reality begin to blur as the group suddenly find themselves trapped inside the building with an ever-growing number of the undead.

THE DEAD HATE THE LIVING is low-budget, but Parker obviously tried to get as much mileage as he could with what he had.

Even though the film isn't as graphic as past entries in the zombie subgenre (like the Lucio Fulci flicks of the late 70's/early 80's, from which this film drew some influence), there's still plenty of effective bloodletting and well-crafted zombie make-ups to satisfy horror fans. The film also benefits from a great location, a decently-written script and one of the best ensemble casts ever to grace a Full Moon opus.

However, the film's not without its shortcomings. Fans of zombie flicks may be disappointed with the relatively small number of zombies in this film (I assume due to budgetary restraints). The film generally (and wisely) avoids computer-generated effects, but it occasionally uses them...and they're among the worst I've ever seen. I'm not kidding. They completely destroy the mood and effectiveness of the scenes they're used in. Fortunately, they're sparsely used, so they don't ruin the film completely.

Overall, I was impressed with this one. The film stands out with Full Moon's DARK ANGEL - THE ASCENT and CASTLE FREAK as examples of quality genre filmmaking. I just hope Full Moon doesn't screw things up by turning this into a crappy series!

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6 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

The lack of originality spoils the fun

Author: The_Void from Beverley Hills, England
11 September 2005

I'm a big fan of zombie movies, but this low budget fan-made stuff doesn't tend to appeal much. It's not that I don't enjoy the splatter, it's that recycled ideas can only go so far before you're completely watching someone else's film; albeit regurgitated. The Dead Hate the Living isn't a complete dead loss, and it's easy to see what the filmmakers were trying to achieve - but it suffers from the common problem with films like this, in that it doesn't have enough ideas in it's own right to be fun enough to completely keep the audience going with it. The film definitely has it's moments, though, such as the ending which brilliantly pays tribute to Lucio Fulci's "The Beyond". The constant name-dropping gets tired after a while. It's not bad at first, as you can see that the film is made by fans of this sort of stuff (people like me and, probably, you) but once the point has been made; it doesn't need to be made again. And again, and again. The plot is typically thin, and it follows a film crew making a no-budget zombie movie in an old abandoned hospital, which also happens to be a resting place for a doctor that wants the dead to take over the Earth.

This plot probably took about five minutes to think of, and the same again for script writing time; but funnily enough, the plot is what gives the film it's main point of originality in the way that the characters are making a film, which turns out to be about what's happening to them. What makes this idea fun is the way that the film almost spoofs itself with the way that we see the crew making their film, and then ending up getting butchered for real. While the plot isn't bad, the plotting will no doubt get on many people's nerves. The gore doesn't turn up at all in the first half of the movie, and even when it does it isn't thick or fast and the result isn't all that fun to watch. It's also ironic that you spend the first half of the film waiting for the zombie mayhem to start, and when it finally does; you realise that the first half of the movie was actually better! The Dead Hate the Living is a film that I would recommend to zombie enthusiasts only. There isn't enough about it to appeal to people who aren't zombie fans, and in that respect even zombie fans may be a little disappointed. A note to everyone; beware of the truly awful CGI towards the end!

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

God do people hate this movie! i actually liked it for it being a schlocky B-Movie.

Author: badgrrlkane from Irving, TX
30 March 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I mean TDHTL is not by no means a great horror film.It is what it is.A low-grade B-movie but it has it's moments of being a cool horror film even w/h it's name-dropping. And it's thankfully a short film though i would like to seen a sequel to see what happens to the 2 main characters after they enter the land Of the Dead. i mean i 've seen way worse horror films, watch death tunnel & you'll think this one is a gem.Good directing from Dave Parker & i actually liked the storyline though the acting was a bit lame. Reminded me at times of low-grade 80's horror but all in all it's what i expected.I think these bad reviews are from people expecting B-horror to be good horror & films such as this one,Boo,nIGHT oF THE Demons etc are not really meant to be good.They appeal to a lovers of B- grade horror films. And w/h this being a horror comedy it's meant to be cheesy.For those who are trying to say it should've been serious well stick w/h more mainstream or actual scary HORROR FILMS.IDO WHEN I WANT TO SEE THAT TYPE OF MOVIE. But when you watch a B-movie you know is a horror comedy don't compare Dead Alive,Evil dead & all the classics as that's not what these movies are even trying to become. I liked this & would recommend it to true fans of silly Horror comedy.And if you hated this stay away from the Sleepaway Camp trilogy.** out of *****

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