“Warning, you are now living in Zombie World” announces the news reporter (played by genre regular Bill Oberst Jr) shortly after bludgeoning a zombie to death in his studio. From here on in he continues to brief us on the state of emergency from around the world in a series of shorts movies, and some fantastic ‘how to survive in zombie world’ advisories.
Only after watching does the crazy cover of a psychotic zombie with an elongated tongue fall in to context – this movie is suitably off its chops, in a very good way.
Indeed it has been ages since a good anthology came my way, and this is definitly one of the more mental I've ever seen. Whilst it doesn’t seem it right away, and indeed it took me a few short stories to get to grips with what was, but ultimately ‘Zombie World’ is essentially a compilation of a series of 9 or so short movies, bookended by a news broadcast (titled ZNN) on the state of emergency which is entertaining in its own right.
The first episode ‘Dead Times’ shows us first-hand what it would be like to be stalked, devoured and ultimately become undead. It’s a cool POV for sure, and with some decent special effect ‘Zombie World starts strong. Next up, the ever popular ‘Fist of Jesus’ a ridiculously gory take on the Bible story of Lazarus. What it lacks in metaphor and philosophical references it makes up for in CGI gore! Possibly one of the most mental kill sequences I have ever seen, surpassing the likes of Tokyo Gore Police even, this sequence is worth the price of the movie alone!
Following this three shorts ‘I am lonely’, ‘Dead Stop’ and ‘Home’ are three pieces which look at the more personal aspects of the zombie apocalypse and whilst they all have different tones, each are pretty nice, if nothing spectacular additions to the anthology.
Taking us back to the first person POV ‘Dead Rush’ is much in the same vein as ‘Dead Times’ with a rather more horrific twist! Good times!
‘Teleportal’ shows us another twist of perspective, and it’s the only short to break the concept of surviving the zombie apocalypse. In this bizarre short we see a gamer sucked into a zombie shooter, only to become a victim of his own entertainment. It’s strange, but an interesting concept non-the-less, it just over much too soon.
‘Certified’ is definitely in the top three shorts with an outstanding performance by young actress Rebecca Spicher. Whilst I don’t want to ruin the story for you it’s an excellent tale of perception with a twist you won’t see coming. All in all its one of the most memorable short stories I have watched.
Finishing off the collection of shorts is the manic, but amusing ‘brutal reflex’ which sees a horde of undead sea zombies meet their match when they interrupt the vacation of a highly strung man. As with ‘Fist of Jesus’ this short is crammed with over the top GCI gore and some kill sequences which will cause you to laugh out loud more than once! It does go on a bit, but ultimately if I had captured shots this good I am not sure I would want to cut them either!
Overall ‘Zombie World’ should be a definite purchase for any zombie fan. The collection of shorts are well chosen and suitably diverse. Sure, some are gorier than others, and of course, depending on your interests in the genre, some will appeal to you more than others, but ultimately all bases are covered! If I were to offer a suggestion as to how to make ‘Zombie World 2’ (should there be one) even better it would be to offer it up as a concept (e.g. ABC’s of Death) to allow a little more coherency between episodes. Other than that director/producer Jesse Baget has done well to put together an anthology of shorts which would otherwise have fallen into obscurity, the film makers around the world deserve every success the exposure from this movie gives them!
‘Zombie World’ is available in UK 8th June!