This movie is not very good. That’s a good way to start off something like this! Zombie Apocalypse: Redemption is a very lackluster flick, and ultimately fails in giving the viewers anything new or exciting. Hell, the zombies in the television show Community (in a Halloween themed episode) had richer makeup. Is this movie Nightmare on Elm Street (2010) terrible? Not at all, but the concept of zombies has been an interest of mine since Boyle’s 28 Days Later, so watching a bad zombie movie is not a delight! To put it in more simple terms: if this had a wide release, it would receive one to two lukewarm reactions, with thousands of hater reviews.
In an abandoned wasteland, where zombies outnumber humans 10,000 to one, and it is a dastardly intense fight every day between the two “species”, where you never have any idea whether you’ll get jumped, and “turned” by one of them. When wanderer John Knox (Johnny Gel) wakes up in the middle of nowhere, he gets picked up followed by a rescue mission by a group hard-hitting survivors, led by a fearless leader named Moses (Fred Williamson). This “peaceful” community becomes threatened once a group of mercenary raiders assault the base, killing everyone they see. Now, they have to deal with both the zombies and the mercenaries to survive.
As I said, I always appreciate a good zombie movie. Heck, I even liked Diary of the Dead, and I still prefer the 2004 update of Dawn of the Dead to the original. What a good zombie movie needs, and this shouldn’t be important for horror films, is the script; which is in this case, horrid. The films scribes were Ryan Lieske, Matthew O’Day, Ryan Thompson (also the Director), and John Tillotson. Look at Tarantino and Kevin Smith; they singlehandedly write scripts, and with Zombie Apocolypse: Redemption, they needed four scribes to work together, and even that could not save this from becoming a total abomination of cheesy dialogue.
The idea of awarding this film two stars was a touch one for me, because I was ready to give this a flat out one, but after a second viewing, then a third viewing with the commentary track, one thing has been made abundantly clear: the soundtrack kicks @$$! Unfortunately, I cannot find any of the soundtrack online, so I guess you will have to pick up the DVD yourself. This film does have some other moments that shine as well. It is shot in the very same vain as Kevin Smith’s Red State and has a real gritty feel to it. For example, the brawl between the protagonist group and the mercenaries was incredibly cool, and the way it was shot also reminded me of a shot I’ve always loved that was used halfway through the series finale of Lost. It’s the kind of shot that makes you glad that cameras have advanced over the years.
Now, back to the flaws included here. The acting here is beyond awful. I’ll start with the lead, Johnny Gel, who portrays John Knox (damn, what a cool-guy name for a movie), and seems like he is reading his lines directly off of the script… literally! Next, we have Moses, who is played by Fred Williamson, and I believe that Ving Rhames (who was in the first film… and Pulp Fiction). Would have loved to see “what Marcellus Wallace looks like” two decades later. Anyways, back to the film. The following ensemble have no talent whatsoever, and there is no delight watching them on screen.
So this is a pretty bad movie, and has nothing memorable. It’s fine for a one time watch, but nothing else.
Well, this is a DVD, so I did not really expect much, and it’s good that I did not build myself up, because Zombie Apocalypse: Redemption features an average video display. This 16×9 widescreen has nothing special. Dark scenes are almost impossible to see, most notably a fight in the basement with a zombie. A real shame, I would like to see that fight in full color! Pretty lazy, if you ask me. I’d rather view it in Blu-ray format, but hey, we can’t have it all!
At least something is redeeming about this! Zombie Apocalypse: Redemption features a pretty good 5.1 Surround Sound audio, and made my speakers go berserker. This, I have to thank the coolness of the soundtrack, that includes a mix of dubstep, and catchy notes. Other than that, the dialogue can sound a bit quiet from time to time, but is an overall good soundtrack!
Despite a decent commentary track, these special features aren’t worth your time. Also, they consider English / Spanish Subtitles as special features. Ha!
- “The Road To Redemption” – The Making Of ZA:R
- Deleted Scenes
- Still Image Gallery
So I didn’t really dig this film. It didn’t have a compelling story, nor did it have a good script, or any good performances for that matter. Despite a cool soundtrack, and some nifty special features, this film didn’t do it for me.
Order Zombie Apocalypse: Redemption on DVD!