Political zombies, an extreme version of Meet The Parents, Mutant Lobsters and Dolphins, a deadly love triangle and an animatronic T-Rex with the brain of Paul Walker who is in love with Denise Richards.
Welcome to Night of the Dead!
From 10pm on Friday night until 8am on Saturday morning, Leeds International Film Festival brings you Night Of The Dead, 5 films back to back with a horror/splatterfest feel.
Here’s my thoughts all the following :
Go Home – ★★✩✩✩
Italian film in multiple languages but can it deliver to an English Audience?
No. It can’t.
Probably the weakest of the films all night, Go Home is a socio-political horror set against the backdrop of refugee unrest in Italy. When Enrico falls into the middle of a zombie apocalypse whilst protesting against foreign refugees holed up in a compound, he soon realises that he needs to get inside the compound to survive.
Inside he pretends that he was protesting on their side and hides away safely from the outside threat. But what could have been really political and full of redemption and emotion just really wasn’t charged in that way at all.
Some of the acting is truly horrendous, to the point that it is often laughable how bad it is, in a film which isn’t truly trying to be comedic except in small segments.
I found myself not caring about any of the characters and just felt it was a weak film.
Why Don’t You Just Die? – ★★★★★
Imagine Meet the Parents, but with Ben Stiller and Robert DeNiro beating the shit out of each other for 90 minutes and you have the idea of how this film works.
Absolute brilliance coming out of Russia this. It starts with Matvey turning up at the flat of his girlfriend Olya’s parents with a hammer in hand. Olya’s dad Andrey soon spots it and the two of them begin to fight. But this is no ordinary fight. Hammers, TV sets, walls, fists, guns, handcuffs, drills and many other things come into play as the story begins to unravel.
It’s revealed fairly early on that Olya has sent Matvey to kill her Dad over something but the plot twists and turns as more of the story is revealed.
The way this film is set and feels is amazing. There are truly some grotesque moments, and some laugh out loud hilariousness too and the film, once is hits the ground running in the very early stages just does not let up at all.
Not afraid to take a few risks and really go to town on the violence and gore, this is one of the most fun experiences I have ever had in the cinema.
I don’t know how hard it will be to see this film away from the festivals, but find a way to see it.
Mutant Blast – ★★★★✩
The most surreal thing I have ever seen!
Just marvel at that poster for a moment and soak in what this film is all about.
I am going to attempt to review it without spoiling some of the most outrageous moments from this film…because some of the impact of seeing certain things on screen truly cannot be spoiled for you. You will understand why!
Simple story really… A mutant experiment gone wrong escapes a facility. In order to contain the outbreak, a nuclear strike is ordered (by accident in a brilliantly funny scene with the facility board around the table) and… Well… Let’s just say mutations happen.
Caught up in all this is Pedro, a party going middle aged guy who stumbles into the whole scenario in spectacular fashion, and Maria, a soldier from the facility attempting to contain everything.
The insanity that then unfolds is remarkably ridiculous. From mutated a hands, to unsightly limb and body part growth, to complete animal mutations. A group of survivors attempt to fight back when the top brass at the facility release a killing machine to wipe them all out.
It’s utterly bonkers but so much fun
Harpoon – ★★✩✩✩
Boating trips are a lovely way to relax aren’t they…?
Not when they are like this.
After three foreign language films, having one in English was a nice relief… If only it was good enough.
Three friends go on a fishing trip with some tensions between them. Richard and Sasha are together but from a very early stage there’s a suspicion they Jonah and Sasha have had a “moment” together recently. As everything begins to unfold and friends turn on each other, the Edgar Allan Poe story The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket comes into play, with plenty of references to the coincidence of Richard Parker.
But the deep links to that story and the action in the film is fairly flimsy and not particularly put together well and once again I found myself not caring about it.
It gets gruesome and nasty as everything unfolds but I think it also suffered massively from following the two films that came before it in the night.
Tammy & The T-Rex (Gore cut) – ★★★★✩
Brief synopsis…. Paul Walker (him from Fast and the Furious) and Denise Richards (Her from Starship Troopers) in their first films are close to hooking up. Unfortunately Tammy (Richards) has a boyfriend who ultimately chases Paul Walker down and leave him for dead in a wild animal safari where he is mauled by Lions.
In hospital he is killed by a mad scientist who wants to use his brain for an experiment. He takes the guys brain and implants it into an animatronic T-Rex. Literally a 10ft tall moving statue.
Obviously the mad scientist manages to make it all work and Tammy’s boyfriend (now as a t-rex) manages to escape and go find Tammy, terrosising people as he goes.
Naturally Tammy realises the Animatronic is her dead boyfriend through the use T-Rex charades (I shit you not!)
How I have gone all this time without seeing this absolute gem of a classic, now with 10 minutes of added gore in it, is beyond me.
What a ride! It’s daft as hell and literally has the whole cinema in hysterics but it was so worth it.