ZOMBIE Week: Zombie Nation (2004) Review

zombienation

My only previous experiences of Ulli Lommel so far are the Boogyman Films; the first was passable, but nothing special, the other 3 consisted of up to 90% of footage from the first one. Already this seems destined to be at least as good as those movies, if only because it consists of all new footage.

Sadly, as with my other “Zombie Week” review (Nazi Zombies) said new footage appears to be filmed on consumer grade video equipment.

Lommel’s name is placed above the movie title on both the DVD art (Ulli Lommel’s Zombie Nation), and the title card, but nothing about the direction of this movie implies a filmmaker who deserves special billing.

The acting is poor (although not quite Nazi Zombies poor), and the sets are the worst kind of amateur rubbish – clearly the whole movie was filmed in the casts houses, and a disused warehouse; many of the “sets” comprise of little more than set dressing, placed in the middle of a huge room (presumably said warehouse) which has been emptied in the hope that you won’t notice the lack of walls – instead, they look like sets from a stage production.

As to the plot, we are thrown right in with a police officer cum serial killer, who pulls women over for no reason, drives them to his warehouse, injects them with some kind of sedative, (it is implied) rapes them, then murders them. He does this on at least one occasion with the knowledge of his new partner, who then tells all his friends, who sit around for 10 minutes debating whether or not he should report the killer cop. Apparently being an officer of the law with knowledge of a kidnapper at large (he isn’t 100% sure the girls are being killed) is no excuse to go whining to your superiors like a wussy little tell-tail.

It’s hinted at that the killer-cop could be an interesting character – I’d easily believe that he was left over from another script that never got finished; we learn through flashbacks that he had an abusive mother, and some of his actions with the girl he kills flit between rage and violence, and a desire to be loved (not that any of this is done well or explored much).

And this goes on for a long time.

You might be forgiven for thinking, by the half hour mark (the movie, by the way, clocks in at a scant 75 minutes plus credits) that this isn’t a zombie movie at all, but a poorly done serial killer movie. Be patient; zombies are coming.

Now, knowing that we are dealing with a zombie movie, you might expect that the sedative our killer injects the women with will turn out to be some kind of reviving agent… It isn’t.

Without warning, 35 minutes into the movie some voodoo priestesses show up out of the blue, and perform a ritual in a bedroom, which seems to involve a tarantula and a snake crawling into someone’s lady-parts.

Finally, with only 15 minutes of movie left, the victims rise… And it’s (unintentional) comedy genius!

The girls return from the grave, lucid, cheerful, clean, and in panda-eyes make-up. The first rise as a pair and manage to seduce a confused man, before eating his face; the other three (thee are 5 zombies in the entire film) get talking to a redneck who decides to suddenly pull out his old fella and wank at them (guess what they rip off of him) and all the violence is set to loud dance music (something which hadn’t featured at all in the rest of the film).

They meet the priestesses who raised them and have a bonkers conversation about starting their new lives… It’s mental.

If the whole movie had been like the last twenty five minutes, this would have made a killer double feature with Birdemic. Sadly, sitting through almost an hour of utter dross to get there is no fun at all.

Oh no, we forgot! Once you take a bite out of another human, he or she becomes just like you.

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