Silent Night, Zombie Night & Hell’s Ground

Posted: 12/13/2011 in Movies

Zombie Movie Night, December 2011 had disaster written all over it. Ya’ see, instead of trying to find the best looking zombie movie, I decided to find a Holiday-themed movie and my brother sought to add another country to the ZMN roster (Pakistan, in this case). This could have been terrible, but luckily both films exceeded our lowest expectations.

Silent Night, Zombie Night

It’s Christmas Eve night and Jolly Old Saint Nick is doing his annual rounds. But this year is unlike any other year! Midway through his trip, Santa discovers that a terrible virus has swept through the Earth. After taking out a family of the undead, Santa Claus stops handing out presents and begins to use his magical breaking & entering skills to search out survivors and escort them to the relative safety of the North Pole. During the night, Santa discovers that the apocalypse is taking its toll and the Naughty List is growing exponentially. He’s forced to make some brutally harsh decisions, especially when a rogue group of elves fear that Santa’s Workshop is becoming overcrowded and unsafe and decide to overthrow the Fat Man.

Silent Night, Zombie Night is nothing like that.

In fact, it has very little to do with Christmas at all! The story follows three survivors as the apocalypse breaks out: Two cops who are long time friends and partners and one of cop’s estranged wife.  SN, ZN is a Christmas movie in the same way that Die Hard or Gremlins are Christmas movies, the events take place during the Holiday season, but it really has no effect on plot or story. The only difference is that Die Hard isn’t titled “A Terrorist Christmas”.

THE GOOD: For a low-budget zombie feature, SN, ZN really does alright. The acting is decent, the zombies and gore look pretty good, and the story flows pretty well. I found the movie to be entertaining and enjoyable.

THE BAD: Aside from my disappointment at the lack of Christmas content, the only overwhelmingly bad thing about SN, ZN is the ending. It’s super abrupt, almost as if the filmmakers weren’t quite sure what to do next, so they just decided to roll the credits.  There are some other things in the movie that are just a little off. For example, the main character accepts the apocalypse as if it were an everyday occurrence and automatically knows every zombie rule. “A crazy guy bit your foot? Better cut that sucker off!”

THE ZOMBIES: SN, ZN attempts to do some interesting, but not off-the-wall things with its zombies. Some of the zombies are smarter than most. I like this concept (it was done especially well in the novel Zombie, Ohio). There’s a fairly nice payoff at the end of the movie, but it still feels as if the idea never really comes to fruition. The SN, ZN zombies are also heavily dependent on sense of smell. It’s a similar idea to The Walking Dead when Rick and Glenn disguise themselves in zombie junk, only it’s comes off as ridiculous in this case, as the main character saunters around completely undetected simply by spraying himself with some deer lure.

THE VERDICT: SN, ZN certainly has its issues, but for a movie of its caliber, it’s really an enjoyable movie. It wasn’t available on Netflix or On Demand, so I had to purchase it on Amazon. I can’t really recommend going that route, but if you have a way to see it on the cheap, it’s definitely worth the watch.

Current ZMN Rank: #32 out of 63

Hell’s Ground

Zombies have invaded Pakistan!…..along with a whole slew of other horror staples. Hell’s Ground plays like an homage to a number of classic American horror movies with a Pakistani twist. Keep your eyes open and try to keep track: Night of the Living Dead, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Friday the 13th, and a big dude in a burqa!

THE GOOD: Hell’s Ground could have easily played as a rip-off or retread of other horror movies, but instead the filmmakers’ passion and enthusiasm for the horror genre is almost tangible. As such, the movie ends up being a really enjoyable ride. Also, the zombie bits are the best parts of the movie. That always helps in my book.

THE BAD: Hell’s Ground isn’t a great movie. You could easily criticize it for being cliched, but keep in my mind that’s part of what makes the movie so much fun. Also, if you were looking for a Bollywood-zombie-musical, you’re going to be disappointed.

THE ZOMBIES: Pretty standard zombies, here. There’s a really nice scene of the zombies approaching from the woods and surrounding our heroes’ van. Most notable is a zombie little person who completes one of the most incompetent zombie attacks of all time!

THE VERDICT: Hell’s Ground is pretty fun movie. It loses some points against other ZMN films just because it’s not a full-blooded zombie movie. The zombies are really just part of a larger movie monster mash-up. Whether your a zombie fanatic or just a plain horror fanatic, this one is definitely worth checking out.

Current ZMN Rank: #23 out of 63

Zombie Movie Night Standings: ZMN PDF

  1. kjburke says:

    Gremlins is a Christmas movie because Gizmo was a Christmas present.

  2. As a young girl with an Asian background, working in a big city in Europe, makes me realise this world is so small yet so big :-), your blog is right up my street, “ Silent Night, Zombie Night & Hells Ground Ask Me About Zombies ” I will keep checking for interesting additions or follow-ups to your blog and maybe contribute a bit more.
    Well written,
    Thank you

  3. Sometimes spam is so funny, you just have to approve it.

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