The Video Vacuum (thevideovacuum) wrote,
The Video Vacuum


AKA:  George Romero Should’ve Really Quit While He Was Ahead Part 2.


In 2005, after a two decade absence, George Romero concluded his epic Living Dead franchise with Land of the Dead.  That film was an underrated masterpiece that perfectly capped a four decade long series of immortal, highly influential, and enormously entertaining zombie films.  Well, George just couldn’t leave well enough alone.  In 2008, he rebooted the franchise with Diary of the Dead in which he dumbed the zombie premise way down and went the Blair Witch route on us, giving the world Camcorder Zombies.  While that flick was pretty bad, it at least had the benefit of some great zombie kills.  Survival of the Dead is a slightly better film than Diary, if only because there’s no Blair Witch shaky cam shit in it.  Other than that, it still sucks.


For the first time in a Romero Dead Movie, Survival is a direct continuation from the previous film.  Luckily for us, the flick doesn’t follow the annoying film students from Diary but rather the army assholes from the end of the film.  They decide to go to an island off the coast of Delaware where two warring Irish families are having a Hatfield and McCoy type feud.  One side wants to keep the zombies alive and teach them to eat something other than human flesh.  The other just wants to shoot ‘em in the head.


Okay, first thing I have to get off my chest about this film is the fact that there are no islands in Delaware that are exclusively inhabited by Irish people.  I live in Maryland, right by the Delaware state line (I’m so close that if I stand in my backyard and spit, it would land in Delaware) and have been to The First State thousands of times and I can tell you that no such islands exist.  The fact that they’d be populated with assholes speaking in thick Irish brogues is particularly hard to believe. 


You know what kind of accents you hear a lot of in Delaware?  Mexican accents.  Now I don’t want to tell George A. Romero how to make a movie here, but I have to at least suggest something to the man.  The first four Dead movies were great because they had some thought provoking social commentary going on in there.  Survival has no such commentary.  (Although I guess you could say there’s a Pro-Life/Pro-Choice sort of thing going on, but it’s too muddled to really work.)  If you took a page out of Machete’s book and had the protagonists be illegal immigrants and the human villains be racists, it may have worked a lot better.  But that’s just me spitballing here.  Anything would’ve been better than these irritating Irish idiots.


Because of the lack of social commentary, Survival is pretty much just like every other low budget zombie flick out there.  There are none of the sly touches of ironic wit that Romero usually puts in his films either.  Because of that, the flick is pretty much useless.


The only reason to watch Survival is for the gore, but even that isn’t all that great.  Romero also relies too much on lame ass comic relief zombie kills that aren’t very funny at all.  Plus, you have to wait until the end of the film to get to the really good stuff like the eviscerations.  And the less said about the shoddy CGI, the better.


Let’s all hope the Dead don’t Survive for another go-round. 

Tags: horror, romero, s, sequel, zombie
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