Posts Tagged ‘Tom Atkins’

Golden Zombey Logo Season 5 is over people, 1/2 a decade of zombie movies in the can. The end of the season means that it is time to hand out the coveted Golden Zombeys! Celebrating the best and the worst that Zombie Movie Night had to offer. Eligible movies were any that were viewed as part of Zombie Movie Night between October 2013 and September 2014. Here’s a quick rundown of the winners. Congratulations to all! For a more detailed presentation including nominees, pictures, and explanations for each winner, click the link:

13:14 Zombeys PDF

2014 Hall of Fame Inductee: Shaun of the Dead

Best Zombie Movie Night Feature: The Battery

Best Actor in a Zombie Movie: Dan Palmer – Stalled

Best Actress in a Zombie Movie: Najarra Townsend – Contracted

Best Supporting Actor in a Zombie Movie: Jarrod Pistilli – Buck Wild

Best Supporting Actress in a Zombie Movie: Caroline Williams – Contracted

Outstanding Zombie in a Zombie Movie: Propeller Head – Frankenstein’s Army

Best Villain (Non-Zombie): Dr. Viktor Frankenstein – Frankenstein’s Army

Best Zombie-Fighting Duo or Team: Overtime – Raph & Max

Best Zombie Comedy: Dead Before Dawn

Best Nudity: Night of the Creeps

Best Foreign Film: Eaters

Most Memorable Massacring of Zombies: Zombie Hunter – Father Jesus with an Axe

Most Original Zombie Origin: Attack of the Vegan Zombies – Witchcraft and Blood/Alcohol Content

Best Soundtrack: The Battery

Most Bizarre Zombie Behavior: The Dead Matter – Zombie’s Day Out

Best Unintentional Comedy: Zombie Massacre – The President of the United States

Worst Ending: Dorm of the Dead

Biggest “WTF” Moment: Frankenstein’s Army

Best Poster Art: Eaters

Check out previous years’ winners here

Right after Halloween (for some reason) Proctor’s Theatre in Schenectady,  NY hosts a zombie movie marathon. This year my brother and I attended with some friends and stayed for the 1st half, which included these three films:

Night of the Creeps

Night of the Creeps

Night of the Creeps was actually the movie I was most excited to see, as it was the only film on the roster that I had not seen previously. It did not disappoint and is a pretty effective comedy. It starts with a bizarre scene with chubby naked aliens chasing one another on a space ship. Apparently one of them had a virus that then crashes on Earth in the 1960s. The virus lands at the same time a serial killer is on the loose and a teenage couple is preparing for a romantic evening in their car (which, if TV and movies are to be believed, is how just about every weekend in the 60s went). We see the killer approach the girl in the car at the same time that an alien slug injects itself into the dude’s mouth, but everything must have been contained as we then flash forward to the present (the 80s) where Rusty from National Lampoon’s European Vacation is trying to impress his dream girl with an assist from his disabled best friend. Rusty figures the best way to do this is to join the nearest, douchiest fraternity. The frat boy leader (and boyfriend of dream girl, of course) tells them they’re in if they can hijack a corpse and put it on the rival frat’s front lawn. Rusty and friend end up in the science building where they stumble upon the frozen body of the 60s alien-infected dude. They thaw him out, and well, you can guess what happens from there. They also run afoul of the local sheriff, who has a dark secret connected to the 60s serial killer. Wow, that was a long description. It sounds kind of convoluted, but it all ends up making sense and working cohesively.

THE GOOD: NotC is pretty funny and entertaining. I was not expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. There are also some good zombie fighting scenes once Rusty and the Sheriff join forces.

THE BAD: Some goofy 80s fashion going on, but people will probably say the same about current movies 30 years from now. What are you gonna do? More critically, the two leads are actually the least interesting characters. The sheriff and Rusty’s friend are the scene-stealers and I was much more interested in what happened to them than I was Rusty and the cardboard cut-out dream girl.

THE ZOMBIES: The zombies here are people infested by a zombie slug that enters through the mouth. Not limited to humans, we also see a zombie cat and dog. They’re pretty tough to slow down unless completely burned. Good thing flame throwers are handy.

VERDICT: I’m surprised that NotC never caught on as more of a cult classic. I know it has its fans, but it was really pretty excellent and deserves a stronger following. It gets my full recommendation. Grade: A-

Current ZMN Rank: #30 out of 130

Golden Zombey Watch: I’ll definitely be looking to nominate either the Sheriff or the buddy for Best Supporting Actor, not sure which will make the cut though. Best Zombie Comedy and Best Nudity are good bets too.

Next up in the marathon was:

The Living Dead at Manchester Morgue

Living Dead at Manchester Morgue

The Living Dead at Manchester Morgue was part of Zombie Movie Night Season 2, when my brother and I watched it under the title Let Sleeping Corpses Lie, which I think is the superior moniker. It earned a mediocre ranking, so I was not  super-excited to have it be the first film to get a 2nd viewing in ZMN history.

TLDaMM takes place in the swinging 70s, when unattractive women ran nude through the streets of London and it was customary to let a complete stranger drive your car if you accidentally damaged his motorcycle. In the film, two strangers run across some zombies that have been created by a new sonic-pesticide machine being used in the country-side. The machine is designed to make bugs kill each other with homicidal rage, thus leaving tomatoes unmolested. Unfortunately, it also makes babies want to rip your goddamn face off (this scene does not play as awesome as it might sound). Oh yeah, it raises the recently deceased too.

THE GOOD: TLDaMM builds slowly, but once the zombies are on the scene, there’s some pretty good mayhem going on. There’s also some good unintentional comedy as some of the character actions are completely ridiculous, including the local police chief acting like a total dick.

THE BAD: TLDaMM bludgeons the viewer with its environmental message. I don’t mind a little social commentary with my flesh-eaters, but this film takes it way over the edge, so that it’s both distracting and irritating.

THE ZOMBIES: Slow moving, yet incredibly strong for some reason. How the zombies are filled with homicidal rage, yet also slow and emotionless doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me, but zombies are rich, complex creatures I guess.

VERDICT: I think I enjoyed this film a little more on the 2nd viewing, but I still stand by our initial, below average ranking. Grade: C-

Current ZMN Rank#89 out of 130

Golden Zombey WatchTLDaMM is not eligible for awards this season. In Season 2 it went 0 for 1, losing in the category of Most Original Zombie Origin.

Last, but certainly not least, was:

Shaun of the Dead

Shaun of the Dead

If you’re reading this blog, then you know Shaun of the Dead. While 28 Days Later and the Dawn of the Dead remake reinvigorated the modern zombie, Shaun completed the resurgence by introducing the zombie comedy. Sure, there had been funny zombie movies in the past (See Night of the Creeps), but Shaun did it with such flair and tribute to the source material that it ended up reaching a larger audience and becoming a classic. Without Shaun, there would be no Zombieland, World War Z (which first showed up in the comedy section of bookstores), or DeadHeads (sorry Shaun, you have to take the good with the bad).

THE GOOD: More than anything, Shaun works because it’s really, really funny. Simon Pegg and Nick Frost work great together (as they have in multiple projects at this point) and all of the comedy in Shaun hits the mark. What makes the film great for zombie enthusiasts is the fact that it is evident that the filmmakers are fans themselves.

THE BAD: Sorry, I got nothing.

THE ZOMBIES: Classic slow-moving zombies, obviously lifted straight out of the original Romero films. Perhaps the best scene of the film has Shaun walking through his normal routine not noticing that his neighbors have all become zombies.

VERDICT: Shaun is an instant classic and a must-watch, essential viewing whether you’re a zombie fan or not. Grade: A

Current ZMN Rank: #2 out 130

Golden Zombey Watch: I’m not sure that we’ll allow Shaun to compete with the rest of the films this season, we’re probably looking at another Lifetime Achievement Award, as we did with NOTLD last season. All of the leads will probably still be eligible for individual awards.