Saturday, September 25, 2004

Zombi 2

After watching Shaun of the Dead last Tuesday (from the UK PAL-DVD), I was back in the mood for some good old Zombie fun. I decided it was at long last that I watch Lucio Fulci's 1979 classic Zombi 2. For those of you wondering 'Why not just watch Zombi'? The answer is that there is no Zombi. Fulci titled his movie Zombi 2 because Dawn of the Dead (the original) was called Zombi in Italy and his producers convinced him it was a good idea to cash in on Romero's success in the Italian market. At least Zombi 2 is loosely connected to Dawn of the Dead anyway, beginning and ending in the United States it may in fact be the reason why the Dead come back to life in Romero's Film..
That confusion aside, this movie has everything you want in a low budget 70's horror film. Bad acting (The good Doctor, who projects some hearty frustration at his science experiments gone awry is an exception), incredibly bad dubbing (this is intrinsicly Italian, just watch any Spaghetti Western to see what I mean), a creepy synthesized musical score, a tropical setting and copious amouts of inventive gore.
Plus there is a brilliant Zombie versus Shark scene that has to be witnessed to be believed!
The movie takes its time (this was not uncommon in both domestic and foreign films of the day) to build up to the final half-hour full-on Zombie attack.
Creepy images like the giallo (italian slasher) style eye piercing, undead feasting on corpses, the aforementioned shark, and lines of the undead crossing the Brooklyn Bridge linger well after the the closing credits.
The one thing about this film vs most of the other high end zombie films, Romero's "Dead" Trilogy, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, 28 Days Later, etc. is that it is pretty much no subtext. It is a film designed to entertain, horrify and gross you out. That is all.
Not for everyone, especially not for those with a weak tolerance to movie blood and guts. Rumour has it that when it first screened in the united states in 1980, they handed out airline-style Barf-bags at the theatres.


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