Battle of the Damned (2013)
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Although the zombie attacks are less and lees in the middle of the film, they come back with a running vengeance that overwhelms most of the survivors.
The plot is thin and basic, but the added adventures when the robots come into the picture change the course of their actions quickly.
Good for a popcorn night in.
One second later, we see Max and his crew in the afflicted city dressed in outfits that would make any sport biker enthusiast proud. The zombies are ravenous, fast, and ferocious. Like maybe you would be if you arrived at your favorite fast food take-out restaurant 5 minutes before closing time. According to a guy in the movie who worked in a lab before the outbreak, they are not really zombies ("The infection invades the cerebrum and kills the higher cortical functions"). I'm guessing this is the more evolved area of the brain responsible for smartness and civility (higher thought, cognitive awareness). --Ergo, those crazy flesh eating people running around in ratty clothing are just dumb and uncivil. NOT the undead at all. Maybe he's right since in this movie you can kill these faux zombies by stabbing, slashing, and shooting them anywhere.
Eventually Max finds the girl of his mission "Jude" (played by cutie Melanie Zanetti) but finds out she's not alone. She is a member of a group of survivors (3 women and 3 men). Their leader, an older gentleman with grey mustache and goatee, acts like a father figure or cult leader using the old stratagem of JUST WANTING TO PROTECT THEM to facilitate his control over them. He doesn't want to leave the place he's hold up in. Says there is no way to get out safely. I can't blame him. Reader, the guy is hold up in a MANSION; smokes pilfered expensive cigars, and is clearly boffing the simple-minded blonde chick in the group. Why would he want to leave? With the zombies running around outside he's "king" on the inside. The fact that Max came for Jude -and only her- is problematical since the group members would like to leave as well -save their leader who doesn't want any of them to.
The action in this movie was a combination of machine guns, knives, and martial arts which I did not find particularly riveting. Dolph looks a little wobbly in the legs when he runs (or tries to run) --or even walk fast. Reminds me of someone's grandpa. Some zombie killing robots were thrown into the mix later on in the movie. I was at times frustrated (and bored) by the hand-to-hand fight scenes of man vs zombie and robot vs zombie because the cameras were in too tight so you mostly saw "body parts". An arm here, a leg there, a hip here, etc. This is an annoying trend in many action movies. Someone or something gets served but you really don't get to see HOW because of the close-ups and quick cut-aways. All you get is the "illusion" effective fighting techniques.
As I said earlier, patient Reader (I have to call you that if you're still with me), the zombies or "zombie-wannabes", if you prefer, are of the fast variety. They run so fast it makes you wanna hand out track suits. Steep stairs are a breeze for them to scramble up. And they can run and tackle you like a pro footballer. Curious though that when they were confronted with a gate that was only about a foot taller than them the gung-ho athleticism they earlier demonstrated was (conveniently?) forgotten. They reverted to the old-style zombies and just stood there hungry, angry, and perplexed grasping thru the bars. Braaains? No. Love, Boloxxxi.
"Battle of the Damned" is a laughable movie with Dolph Lundgren in the lead role. The idea of zombies and robots is original but the execution is very poor: terrible screenplay and dialogs are terrible; and the camera work in the mayhem of zombies is awful. My vote is three.
Title (Brazil): "Zumbis e Robôs" ("Zombies and Robots")
Most movies like this have some sort of special forces or organized shock troops that go into battle against the zombies and then just slowly take random unaimed volleys into the zombie crowds with little or no effect and then die pointlessly- their entire lives full of training and discipline completely forgotten and unused- VERY unrealistic. This movie doesn't do that- it is the complete 180 degree opposite and makes you like the characters and want them to live! Fun movie for action and sci-fi fans.
Christopher Hatton writes and directs this low budget science fiction romp that fuses two sub-genre subjects, the modern zombie-infected and Robots. Coincidently it shares the same basic concept as Zombie Massacre (2013) and elements from a lesser known zombie film Severed: Forest of the Dead (2005).
Shaky camera shots aside it's a b-film that has atmosphere thanks to the unusual Malaysian location and interesting architecture. The generic costume design fittingly works, the music by Joe Ng and Ting Si Hao although borrowing from many sci-fi films is excellent. The violence is aplenty, with the gun and abundance of knife play being effective enough.
There's no small Dolph Lundgren cameo it's very much is his film focusing on his Max Gatling character throughout. Both actresses Oda Maria as Anna and Melanie Zanetti as Jude are notable with the rest of the cast being adequate given Hatton's limited script. The zombies sadly are not the slow shambling kind and the robot CGI effects are a mixed bag. Nevertheless, the relationship between both the main robot (voiced by Tim Cooper) and Max is quiet interesting and humorous. Beneath the low end production there is quite a good story even if it swaps development, depth and pacing for action.
Don't expect too much, Hatton has a lot on his hands juggling all the high concept elements coherently and keeps it linear but what is on offer is the infected, robots and soldier high-jinks and basically that's what it delivers.