An infectious epidemic spreads through India as an American turbine engineer learns that his pregnant girlfriend is trapped near the slums of Mumbai. Now he must battle his way across a 300m... Read allAn infectious epidemic spreads through India as an American turbine engineer learns that his pregnant girlfriend is trapped near the slums of Mumbai. Now he must battle his way across a 300mile wasteland of the ravenous undead.An infectious epidemic spreads through India as an American turbine engineer learns that his pregnant girlfriend is trapped near the slums of Mumbai. Now he must battle his way across a 300mile wasteland of the ravenous undead.
In this sequel the zombie plague spreads from Africa to India and we follow a new main character, who is strikingly similar to the lead in the first film. Some of the virtues of the first film are still evident here. The cinematography is beautiful taking in some stunning landscapes, the score is great and there is an emphasis on atmosphere similar to the original.
Unfortunately the second film contrives much more of a human drama and that's where the sequel becomes problematic. The hero has to rescue his pregnant Indian girlfriend, who comes complete with a traditional, disapproving father and neither the writing nor the acting are up to the challenge. The film lapses into melodramatic cliché and inadvertent comedy every time we spend time with the female lead and her family in Mumbai. Both "The Dead" films cast mostly non-actors. In an ideal case this can lend characters a sense of authenticity but here results in some awkward performances. In the first film the necessary alliance between the the engineer and the soldier was understated and not a lot of emoting was required. Here the lead actress looks uncomfortably out of her depth and her character lacks any qualities that would make us understand why our hero would be traveling 300 miles across the country to save her. To be fair, the actress tries hard but she isn't given much to do apart from crying and screaming.
Instead of the dignified, stoic soldier of the first film, here the hero gets a cute orphan right out of Indiana Jones and Temple of Doom as a sidekick. By not having a local character fighting next to him, the sight of a white character killing his way through hordes of brown skinned zombies becomes uncomfortable to watch.
On top of these problems, this is a film where characters do unbelievably stupid things in situations where they are surrounded by zombies to repeatedly get themselves into danger. And these folks never seem to learn from their mistakes. Twice the lead talks to his girlfriend about something confidential on the phone and twice her father snatches the mobile from her mid-conversation to overhear something not meant for him, which then sets him off shouting at her paramour. By the second time this almost comes to qualify as a running gag.
On the up side there are a few tense sequences and some decent set pieces. The non-computer enhanced gore is plentiful and inventive, which still makes this worth watching for zombie fans but every time the film takes us back to Mumbai for the ensuing family histrionics, the film stops dead for some eye-rolling Bollywood melodrama. At least it spares us a musical number.
- Aug 24, 2013