Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Dead Alive (1992) Review:

Out of all the zombie movies ever created, I have never witnessed one made with so many atrocities and somehow not allow me to lose my lunch. Even more surprising was that this was before director Peter Jackson was really known for making some big movies. And although no one hears about the actors who were in this movie, much of it still leaves a scarring impression for the better.

Timothy Blane (Lionel Cosgrove) kind
of looks like a young Charlto Copley...
Dead Alive is the story of a small town of civilians that become infected by a virus that turns its victims into flesh eating zombies. The origin of where this virus starts is at the house of Lionel Cosgrove played by Timothy Balme. The person to be infected first is his snooty grandmother (Elizabeth Moody) who never seems to be happy with anything. But before this even begins, the introduction alone is only a tiny glimpse of what monstrosity is coming the viewers way for the rest of the film.

Honestly I can't even comprehend how this much gore was even acceptable let alone feasible. From singular moments to hoards of zombies, Jackson immerses his audience into what seems like a zombie paradise; where anything and everything is ripped to shreds and or eaten alive. Much of which I could not believe occurred. After watching the movie once, I had to go back and watch all the scenes I didn't think I had viewed.

Turned out I wasn't hallucinating.
Lionel's mother,...the first to be infected....

Some people complain of adventure films having too much over the top action, well in a sense, this is a parallel to the horror genre. Dead Alive has over the top gore. I congratulate Richard Taylor's (creature & gore effects) ability to make some really horrific scenes but there were times that I felt like there needed to be an intermission so the main characters could take a breather. Instead, I got non-stop yuck.

The comedy aspect I could have cared less for too. There weren't many scenes I laughed at. Most were just "Ah,..funny" moments. The zombie baby was a turnoff for me. It was at that part of the movie that made me feel like Jackson just put it in for us to not take seriously. It just didn't seem to match the rest of the tone in the film. However, the karate-chopping priest was neat and entertaining add-on. Overall it was an enjoyable and scarring experience.

The intended comical scenes are silly and the gore may be excessive at times but what distinguishes itself from the rest is how abundantly it is relied on. Dead Alive is not for the squeamish.

Points Earned --> 8:10

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