Sunday, December 23, 2012

Re-Animator (1985) Review:

Every character in a zombie film hates zombies. But there is only one individual in film history that is actually not afraid of them. This individual is Herbert West. I wouldn't say he loves zombies but he's definitely not scared of dealing with them. West is a scientist who has broken the barrier on how to keep people from dying. He has developed a serum that once injected into the brain, effectively empowers the cadaver to start living again. The problem? The turn out to being very livid, uncontrollable zombies.

Jeffrey Combs as Herbert West with his really cool looking serum
The story is loosely based off of H.P. Lovecraft's work, "Herbert West, Re-Animator". The whole film is quite weird actually. It's definitely a story not many people would tell but it just so happens director Stuart Gordon was able to pull this film off with just enough weird and clever things to make it enjoyable. Playing Herbert West is Jeffrey Combs; the callous non-emotional scientist, that is, unless he's dealing with his work. Combs is so good at his character, that although he makes it look like he has no idea what he's doing, he seems like he does.

Co-starring Combs is Bruce Abbott as Dan Cain and his girlfriend Megan Hasley played by Barbara Clampton. Unfortunately, due to West's flamboyant ambition, these two main characters will be sucked into his web of problems as time progresses through the film. And this all happens when Herbert West is transferred to Dan Cain's college. There, West convinces Cain to help him in his studies. Not much else needs to be said, it's a domino effect from here.

Bruce Abbott as the unfortunate colleague of Mr. West
To many fans, this movie is a dark comedy. Even though I enjoyed it, I found it more bizarre than funny. There were a few moments where I did laugh, either because of Jeffrey Combs' ability to give his cracked character a dry sense of humor (now and then), or, just how clumsy the zombies were.  Speaking of which, these zombies are not your standard zombie. No, this is not the tear your flesh off your skin down to the bone zombie. The zombies depicted here are just plain angry. Almost like they didn't want to be re-animated and they were mad at West for doing so.

Special effects are actually fairly decent here for 1985. There's not a lot of blood but enough to satisfy. If you're a fan that likes crazy nude scenes, you'll especially like this one. Like I said before, this film is just strange. As for music goes, Richard Band created the score. I have to say, Brand really doesn't create any scary tones. He does create some tension but his music is rather choppy and unconventional which makes it hard to feel anything from it. Again, a strange film but enjoyable in some areas.

The classic that brought Jeffrey Combs to the screen is peculiar and creepy. This is a different kind of zombie flick and if you enjoy all kinds, then it's right up your alley.

Points Earned --> 8:10

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