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Zombie Girl: The Movie (2009)

Emily Hagins is making a zombie movie. It's feature-length, it's bloody, and the zombies don't run. Just like it should be. But there's just one difference between her film and every other zombie movie you've ever seen. Emily is twelve.
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Emily Hagins is making a zombie movie. It's feature-length, it's bloody, and the zombies don't run. Just like it should be. But there's just one difference between her film and every other zombie movie you've ever seen. Emily is twelve.

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16 January 2009 (USA)  »

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1.78 : 1
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A Great Story About Family Bonding and Pursuing Dreams
6 October 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"Zombie Girl" is not really a movie about zombies, but about a young girl who is directing a zombie film. The focus is a little bit on how the film was made, but the underlying theme seems to be about family bonding. Parents who want to encourage their child's dreams, this is a film for you.

I came into the film with moderate expectations. I love horror and the film-making process, but was not sure if this would really be up my alley. I must say, I was pleasantly surprised. The directors took what is more or less an average family and really made them interesting, and made a fine case that Emily Hagins isn't just a girl with too much free time -- she cares about her craft and knows her stuff.

The film also gives a glimpse into the Austin film community, though this is not the focus. We meet an area critic, a film society, Harry Knowles (of Ain't It Cool News) and the Butt-Numb-a-Thon. If you live in or around Austin, this film isn't just about the Hagins family, but about your community and its promotion of independent film. I wish my community had a similar flavor, but I have to drive three hours for that.

The DVD makes a great documentary even better. There are extra interviews and outtakes, but most importantly the Emily Hagins film "Pathogen", so you get two for one (rather than buying it from her website separately). Sure, "Pathogen" is not great, but coupled with "Zombie Girl", you can see why it's not great, where mistakes were made, and use this as a teaching tool for yourself or others when you try to make your own film.

I endorse "Zombie Girl" for both horror fans, and families in general. I think even those who have no interest in horror or film could take something from this: a precocious young girl following her passion, and a family helping her to do just that. Emily Hagins is certainly a young visionary, but she would not be able to realize it without parents to drive her to set.


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