|Index||6 reviews in total|
For sick people like me, horror movies were a staple of my formative
years. and when it came to zombie movies I loved the Italian stuff.
This wasn't to say that I didn't love the films George Romero was
making but for pure nastiness and weirdness the Italians were where it
was at. The plots didn't make a lot of sense, sure, but darn those were
some fun movies. They were more about tone, and chills than they were
about plot, but for them, it worked. With Zombie Abomination and Zombie
Atrocity director Thomas Berdinski is trying to capture some of that
lost Italian magic, while tweaking it a little as he does.
After the military buries the product of a failed experiment in the hopes of hiding what they were up to they only end up creating a dangerous threat to the world in the form of the living dead. Reanimated soldiers begin to rise and devour people in the most horrible of ways. When an ex-soldier's twin brother is killed mysteriously he decides he will stop at nothing to find the truth behind his brother's death. Little does he know though that there are forces working against him, forces that will stop at nothing to keep the secret of the living dead a secret.
Zombies, harlots, rednecks, militia, aliens you name it and it is in there. This is a loving homage to the living dead films yesteryear, it is hard to deny the charm here. The character's are named after actors or directors of the Italian genre classics, and some of the plot devices are clearly from some of the same films. Mixed in with the loving nods to the past there is a definite identity of its own that is created through the comedy that runs rampant here. This isn't your average dour zombie movie but is one that takes stabs at itself and the rest of the genre. Sure, there is a lot of danger here, but much of it comes from the characters themselves, and it's a wonder that any of them are left by the second film.
And it is fun, the characters are goofy, the gore is great, the zombies are very well done and have a creepy, unique look, and overall the film is well put together and well made.
The movies are not perfect though. Some of the jokes are a bit forced, some of the plot points are as clear as mud, and as fun as the movie is, it feels a bit long. As fun as the films were, it was just a lot to take in one bite. Sort of like going to a buffet with all kinds of food that you love and so you dig in and get a stomach ache from trying to eat it all at once. It is a heck of an achievement to have one movie let alone two, and it says a lot about director Berdinski and his crew that they were able to pull this off. And darn it, I give it up to anyone that can make a movie like this and not revert to useless and easy nudity. It says a lot about Berdinski that he didn't fall into that trap and I commend him on that.
I can't say that the Italian masters would appreciate the jabs that these two films take at them but they are done so lovingly that it would be hard for fans to take any of it to heart. Only a true fan can craft a film with such absurdity and madness as these movies. If I had a wish it would be that it all flowed together more smoothly but the ambition behind this makes you forgive the few quibbles I had. And man, there is like an ocean of gore here, so grab your sailing hats friends, and hit the seas for Italy, just be careful of those zombies, they got a nasty bite radius.
7.5 out of 10
When i take the time to write a review, I make it as honest as I can because that's what i look for when I'm reading reviews. Every film will have fans just like every film will have haters. The trick is to find the review from someone who enjoys the same type of films that you the reader does. Myself, I enjoy a vast variety of films. I think it's all a work of art. It's my church...my escape. if they taught school on television through movies...Id be a genius. I look at movies as a creative expression, especially in the independent market where big studio execs don't change every aspect of the script that made it good to begin with. Now, I like big popcorn movies as much as the next guy...but i also love low to no budget films as well. I like films that stand out from other films. Films that are not the same thing done over and over again. Now you know a little about my taste...let's get on with why your here...the review of IZM. What can I say about this film that hasn't already be said. It has everything. Action, Comedy, Drama, Gore, Horror, Spoofs, etc. Yes, it's made on a very low budget but don't let that stop you from checking this out. This film is, however, NOT for everybody. If your ONLY a fan of Big Budget Summer Blockbusters; Only like Major players in your movies; top of the line Million dollar f/x; No gore and just boring everyday Hollywood studio crap, then this film isn't for you. But, if you enjoy low budget independent films that are NOT boring; films that bring back memories of the youth; classic Italian spaghetti made zombie films; Then this movie is MOST definitely for you. I loved both parts I & II because I love seeing what a guy can do with no budget but nothing but love for the genre can come up with. Its the same reason why some people prefer college sports over professional, because it's more exciting because it's all about the love...same here. Part I sets up the story for part II which really takes off! I think what Thomas Berdinski and co. did here was utterly fantastic! I cant wait for Part III. Were taking the independent market back from the suits and it all starts here with IZM. I own the films and have watched them several times as each time I watch them, I notice something new. The films deserve a 10 but I'm saving that for IZM III and giving them something to strive for.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
A few parts of this review may be what some would consider to be
spoilers. I don't think they are really, but to be safe, I've included
a spoiler warning.
We all know of, and love, all of those crazy zombies movies that have come to us out of Italy. Super gory, sometimes excellent and sometimes beyond bad, the Italian zombie movies have a huge fan base. Whether they're good or bad, fans seem to love them either way.
Thomas Berdinski set out to make a two part homage to the the Italian zombies movies that we all hold in such high esteem when he made The Italian Zombie Movie Part 1 and Part 2.
This review will focus on Zombie Abomination: The Italian Zombie Movie - Part 1. A review of Zombie Atrocity: The Italian Zombie Movie - Part 2 will be published here on National Horror Examiner in the very near future, so stay tuned.
In this, the first of the two-part story, we meet a plethora of characters, each with their own personal story arc. Sgt. Bruno Deodato (Jeff Bromley) who must learn of the truth behind his twin brother's mysterious death, Bruno's dead brother's wife Catriona, a psychic who somehow failed to foresee her husband's death, Dr. Falluci, the afore mentioned rogue Italian biochemist who seems to be hiding more than a few secrets, the doctor's assistant Maria, who seems to be a succubus, and her asshole cop boyfriend Ruggerro, a friend of Maria's named Mariangela, another bearer of sinister secrets, Jeremiah and "The Colonel", a pair of Michigan Militia members who once served in the military with Bruno, one of whom is also hiding a secret or two, a man- hating feminist gas station attendant, the "local pervert" who dons a Mexican wrestling mask and, well, we're not sure what he does, but it's bound to be something really creepy, and two aliens, who look like your average human men, driving around in a van scanning people and cell towers with their hand-held scanning equipment. There are a few other characters roaming about as well but those mentioned here are the main characters of Part 1. As I mentioned, each character, or group of characters, has their very own story arc, upping the zaniness ante. Of course there are also zombies roaming about. Lots of zombies. Some emerge from the water, whereas others smash their way out of flimsy wooden caskets ala Fucli's Zombi.
An early scene in the film is sure to thrill fans of Lucio Fulci's Zombi. I won't go into detail about it, but anyone who has seen Zombi will know the scene when they see it.
Inspired by such films as Zombie, aka Zombie 2, The House by the Cemetery, Cemetery Man, The Beyond, Let Sleeping Corpses Lie aka The Living Dead at Manchester Morgue and City of the Living Dead, Zombie Abomination: The Italian Zombie Movie - Part 1 pays loving homage to the films made by such legendary Italian directors as Lucio Fulci, Michele Soavi, Ubaldo Ragona and Jorge Grau.
I'll gladly state that I believe if Ed Wood were still alive, he would be so proud of what Thomas Berdinski has done here with this film. It's tongue-in-cheek, yet serious. You get a lot of laughs with this film, but the story also draws you in. I should note that this film is an extremely low budget, or DIY, film. It was made on an estimated budget of around $1000, and all that Berdinski accomplishes with that minimal amount of money is nothing short of phenomenal.
If you're a fan of Italian zombies movies, a fan of horror spoofs/homages or a fan of movies that are fun, I highly recommend Zombie Abomination: The Italian Zombie Movie - Part 1.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I had the opportunity to view The Italian Zombie Movie over 2 nights at the Cinema Wasteland horror/B-movie convention recently. This film, although clearly made on a shoestring budget, is clearly a labor of love.....a love of the zombie movies from Italian directors, particularly the great Lucio Fulci. It combines elements from these films with some sci-fi, a good dose of blood & gore, a halfway-coherent plot line with a few twists to create a very enjoyable zombie comedy. Any fan of Italian- directed zombie movies, or just zombie movies in general, will enjoy this little indie scare-comedy. I purchased the 2 parts separately, so this review is on both pages. ENJOY!!!! (I know I did!!!)I hope this filmmaker can continue providing us with great low-budget fun!!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Michigan's own Tom Berdinski "gets it". When someone does a "spoof" or "homage" to genre films (especially ones with rabid fan bases like the "Spaghetti Splatter" movies of the 80's) there's a fine line between someone who's laughing with the fans and someone who's laughing at the fans. From the opening scene, with a brilliantly executed, Fulci inspired eye impalement, it's very obvious that Berdinski and Company are fans making films for fans. And, in this case, that's a very good thing indeed! Simply put, The Italian Zombie Movie (both parts) were a total blast to experience!! The acting was cheesy and authentic, the gore and effects were convincingly low-rent, and the story and soundtrack were pure Italian schlock! There were "inside jokes" to genre fans at every turn, from lines and set pieces to character names and behaviors. One could easily devise a drinking game around spotting the Fulci/Argento/Deodato references (and if you're a fan of said directorswatch these accompanied by a few cold onesit enhances the experience!) Without giving too much away, the story centers around a bizarre group of people trying to get to the bottom of various conspiracies and sub-plots involving an Army landfill populated by re-animated corpses. All the Italian stereotype characters are herethe sexy Succubus, the mad doctor, the misogynistic anti-hero, the bumbling military types, they even got the Michigan Militia involved!! Going in, I was like "two 90 minute features?? No way this is going to hold my interest", but the laughs kept coming, the groans kept coming, and the splatter kept coming. This first movie was a riot, very Troma-like (in a good way), the female leads were very easy on the eyes, and everything was done with a wink and tongue planted firmly in cheek. By the end of the film, you're hooked and waiting for more! Zombie Atrocity picks up right where Abomination left offwith Bruno Deodato, our hero still super glued inside his tent while the zombie battle rages on outside, then things get really strange. All of the twisted sub-plots get nicely wrapped up with women sprouting horns, a re-animated head in a Luchadero mask, intestine eating, and robots from space! Do yourself a favor a pick this movie up!! This a fun-filled, campy, gut munching, skull stomping, zombie picnic! Fans of Italio-splatter (as well as fans of low-budget/no-budget film making) will eat this up like so many spilled guts!
You talk about a film that has a lot of indie buzz. Every website and every reviewer has mentioned this film. I had to see it. And thank god I did. This film is nothing short of a very fun time. Now, keep in mind this is very low budget DIY film making. And, if you are a fan of old school horror with new school charm. This film is for you. It is almost 3 hours total and the time goes by so fast, that at the end you are left with the thought, I cannot wait to see what Thomas can do with a bigger budget and more time. This is the blue print for someone who is going to be so major. Fans, if you want a film that is made by a fan of the genre who wont dumb you down or make you feel stupid. This is the film for you. Good job Thomas.
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