Sunday, 31 January 2010

Awaken the Dead - surprising

A while ago I picked up a whole bunch of films from a company called Brain Damage Films. They were cheap, really cheap. That should have rung some alarm bells in my head. I know what cheap horror can be like after all - I've seen maybe fifty Troma films. But I thought I'd give them a god and order ten of their movies.

Well so far they've mostly been awful. The first one of theirs I saw was passable - Prey for the Beast - but most of the others I've popped into the DVD player since have been pretty awful. I've even fast forwarded through one or two.

But my persistence has paid off - at least to a modest degree. The latest of their films I've watched is called Awaken the Dead. The story is...

A former government black ops type grew sick of the "wetworks" stuff and left to become a Priest (as you do). Some years later his former commander sends him a note to meet him at his house. When he gets their he meets the guy's daughter who knows nothing about him and wants nothing to do with him. That all changes though when the town is overrun by zombies and they must work together to survive.

This is not completely awful. I know that's hardly a recommendation for a film but I was expecting absolute trash. But Awaken the Dead is not actually all that bad. Okay, the acting sucks; the effects are not exactly top notch; the filming is not of the best quality and the basic premise of a secret government project creating a weapon that turns people into zombies is hardly new, but the film has a certain appeal. And it's one that doesn't require all the female leads to have clothing that falls off at the slightest touch. There's no real titillation at all.

For one thing the take on the familiar plot at least has some new elements in it, ludicrous though they might seem when I type them - I'm referring to the black ops assassin turned priest guy. And the story moves at a decent pace, certainly enough to keep me from hitting the fast forward button.

So I was impressed. But that doesn't mean it's a cult film in the making here. It's not going to be one that's remembered with reverence in years to come. But if you are looking for some cheap horror films to stick on when you've got a bunch of friends around to have a beer/pizza/horrorfest then this wouldn't be a total waste. It should certainly give you plenty to joke about.

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