The Dead 2 (Blu-ray Review)

The Dead 2The opening scene of The Dead 2 depicts a man lumbering through a town.  That’s basically how the movie works: clumsy, plodding, and with no sense as to where it’s going.  I did not see The Dead 1, and after this follow-up, it’s not likely I ever will.  At least there are some pretty landscape shots and a handful of effective bursts of gore to tease the viewer, making them believe the film will improve.  Don’t be fooled by the rocks that I got.


The “dead” of The Dead 2 have moved on from Africa to India, causing trouble for good ol Nick Burton (Joseph Millson), an engineer who must traverse the lands to Mumbai, where his pregnant girlfriend is stuck between a zombie and a hard place.  Good news, though!  Along the way, he rescues a young boy (Anand Gopal), who just happens to speak impecable English.  Bad news, though! We have to listen to their obnoxious banter for quite some time.

I would’t be so hard on The Dead 2 if it didn’t take itself so seriously.  There’s not an ounce of fun to be found anywhere on the Blu-ray disc.  I was hoping then that it would at least be gripping.  Alas, the directors have no sense of how to build tension, a baffling notion given how well regarded the first Dead film is amongst the horror community, proving that lightning never strikes twice.  Or is it iron that is never hit twice?  I don’t know, science isn’t my field of expertise.   I do know that there are so many slow motion shots it gives Michael Bay a run for his money. If one were to remove the slow motion sequences, this film would probably be 30 minutes long, a merciful move if there ever was one.

The Brothers Ford don’t seem to trust the viewers, as the moral themes are sledgehammered on your head, crushing any potential for even the most basic subtlety.  There’s some gibber-jabber about Burton’s ex getting rid of their child, so naturally this journey is truly about salvation.  And if you forgot that, you’ll be reminded time and time again.  Perhaps The Brothers Ford assumed you’d be spacing out.

I remember some moments where I was impressed at the zombie effects, but I struggle to recall what exactly it was that caused me to sit up.  The characters are torturously bland, as if the directors refused to give the audience anything to grab onto emotionally.  The personal struggles they go through aren’t what’s the problem, it’s the execution. There’s simply not enough story to sustain the running time.  The beats repeat themselves throughout, rendering the majority of scenes interchangeable. The Dead 2 is a carbon copy of the zombie sub-genre, filmed with the competency of confused amateur.  It is a fraud; worse, it is a bore.

The Dead 2


  • Encoding: MPEG-4 AVC
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Clarity/Detail: At times, the picture will be very clear, and other moments it will flip and be fuzzy.  It’s quite the conundrum.
  • Depth: Theres a great shot at the beginning in a field thats very layered, but besides that and a handfull of other similar shots, the film is rather flat and disappointing because of that.
  • Black Levels: Deep enough, although much of the film takes place during the day so it very hard to accurately score this one.
  • Color Reproduction: There’s a decent job done here and as a result the color timing from scene to scene is quite consistent.
  • Flesh Tones: Lifelike for the humans, dead for the zombies.  Haha!  Get it?!
  • Noise/Artifacts: A couple pops of noise will catch your attention, but it’s nothing severe or too distracting.

The Dead 2


  • Audio Format(s): English Dolby TrueHD 5.1
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dynamics:  The surround sound, which I’ll get to in a second, is actually the best part of the Blu-ray.  However, that’s not a saying a lot because there are still some issues here at play.  All in all, its a decent balance throughout the speakers, but most importantly reproduced mostly authentically throughout.
  • Low Frequency Extension: There are fun times to be had here with the gunshots and various zombie SFX driving the LFE channel.
  • Surround Sound Presentation: In my opinion, this is the best part about the Blu-ray.  Turn up your speakers when you watch this and enjoy the surround action.
  • Dialogue Reproduction: The dialogue is clear and precise, even when theres action

The Dead 2


You know it’s sad, but oh so true.  There are only two supplements that you’ll find here that I’ll discuss real briefly.

  • The Making of THE DEAD 2 – This is a behind the scenes footage that accompanies a discussion regarding the making of the film with the Ford Brothers.  It’s all rather boring and the viewer won’t get much out of it.
  • Deleted Scenes – There are two lonely omitted scenes that are DOA here.

The Dead 2


There are too many other, superior zombie films out there that it makes it difficult to recommend this film.  When it comes to horror, I’m an easy sell, yet this one failed to connect with me.  Nothing here is worth your time; it doesn’t bring anything new to the table and it doesn’t have the decency to keep you invested.

The Dead 2


I never stand in front of the elevator doors when they open. All because of the movie The Departed.

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