Deadlines: News roundup 5/5/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On May - 5 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

The Wii is getting a rail-shooter version of the space-zombie shooter Dead Space called Dead Space Extraction. I haven’t played the original, despite mostly positive buzz, so I don’t know if I should be excited or not. (Dread Central)

Speaking of positive buzz and Dead Space, word is that the first game sold 1.4 million copies across all platforms. Not too shabby for  a new IP released during a serious recession, eh? (Gamespot)

If you can’t make it to the May 18 screening of the Corbin Bernsen directed, Bill Moseley starring, bio-terror zombie opus Dead Air, you can still catch it on June 6 at the New York Fangoria Weekend of Horror. Or just wait for it to come to your local theater/Blockbuster. Whatever. (Dread Central)

The festival hit Deadgirl, about two dudes that find a zombie hottie chained up in the basement of an old mental hospital and what happens when one decides to get his freak on with her, is coming to DVD September 14 via Dark Sky Films. (Fangoria)

There’s a new trailer for Rec 2 out. You don’t have to speak Spanish to get this but you will have to click off site (no embeds, sorry).

Schlock waves: Shock Waves

Posted by Cory Casciato On May - 5 - 2009

shockwaves You need proof that the Nazi zombie subgenre is cursed? How about the fact that Shock Waves is widely considered the best of the bunch and it sucks. It’s Ken Wiederhorn’s directorial debut and I have no idea how he was ever allowed behind the camera again afterward. He hasn’t worked since 1998 if IMDB is to be believed, so eventually folks caught on. If they had stopped him after this crap, maybe he wouldn’t have destroyed Return of the Living Dead II.

The problems of this movie are legion. The zombies are frequently referred to as “stylish” but I was unimpressed. They move in rigid sync with each other, wearing dumb goggles and looking for all the world like refugees from a Kraftwerk parody video. They aren’t scary and they’re easily the best part of the movie. The bastards don’t bite, preferring to drown their victims for the most part. The killings are ridiculous and unbelievable.

The movie gives us a creaky tour boat full of Americans who stumble on an island inhabited by former Nazi officer watching over a sunken ship populated by Nazi zombie super-soldiers. Then they get killed. Far too little happens and the movie jumps around a bit due to poor editing, direction and writing. It wasn’t quite incoherent but it was definitely befuddled. It wasn’t suspenseful, gory or funny. It also wasn’t interesting. But it did have Peter Cushing and John Carradine, for all the good it did. Worthwhile only for historical interest.

Deadlines: News roundup 5/4/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On May - 4 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

The mainstream media is catching on to the awesomeness of zombies (surely a sign of impending zombie apocalypse) as the Chicago Tribune jumps in with a piece about the zombie zeitgeist and a short interview with Max Brooks, author of The Zombie Survival Guide and World War Z. (Chicago Tribune)

If you need more toys to announce to your friends, coworkers and loved ones how freaking much you love the undead, then you are in luck: Fearwerx has some special, limited-edition 8″ figures of the original zombie from Night of the Living Dead available. (Dread Central)

In the “It’s about frigging time” department, REC is getting a proper U.S. DVD release on July 14. That’s the good news. The bad news? No Blu-Ray release and only one lousy making-of featurette for special features. Lame. (Fangoria)

Late Friday, a rumor broke that Peter Jackson was returning to horror with a yarn about nazi zombies that travel back in time to kill Christ. Before your head explodes with awesomeness, be aware the rumor was debunked quickly. (Entertainment Weekly)

The cutesy, cel-shaded zombie game Zombie Wranglers is being released this Wednesday, May 6 on the Xbox Live Arcade for 800 XBL points ($10 in Earth moneys). (Team Xbox)

In other cutesy zombie game news, the downloadable Plants vs. Zombies strategy title releases tomorrow, May 5. And some woman went and knit up a bunch of Left 4 Dead characters and zombies. (Kotaku)

Also, if you’re reading this via RSS, is there any chance I could convince you to either leave me a comment or send me an e-mail and say “hey”? I’m trying to figure out how many of you are out there and I’ve yet to discover a good tool to do so. Thanks!

Deadlines: News roundup 5/1/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On May - 1 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

The latest zombietastic figurine in the impressive Sideshow Collectibles “The Dead” line has emerged. It’s the Butcher, a cleaver-wielding bastard of a zombie that looks to be a Comic Con exclusive. I am not in a position to afford collectible toys that cost upward of $50, but if I were, I would want all of Sideshow’s Dead figures. (Dread Central)

Genre-vet screenwriter Simon Boyes (Broken, The Devil’s Chair) drops some details on Dark Island to whet your appetite. He actually reveals very little, but from what I can gather from the trailer (embeds disabled, sorry), it’s about a Lost-like smoke monster on a Lost-like island that turns folks into creepy, black-eyed zombies. Looks fun. (Bloody Disgusting)

If you PC players enjoy the 24-hour free trial of Left 4 Dead mentioned yesterday, you will also love the discounted sale price of $24 and the new, super-detailed stats-tracking might tickle your fancy, too. (Kotaku)

Speaking of PC gaming, when Resident Evil 5 comes to that platform it will support nVidia’s 3D effects if you have the 3D vision glasses (and a predilection for splitting headaches, one presumes). (Kotaku)

The August 14 release date I mentioned yesterday for possibly zombie-containing movie I Sell the Dead (this review makes it sound more like vampires, but I am still hoping for some zombie action) is not official. Perhaps someday it will get a release date (maybe even August 14) but don’t mark your calendars just yet, IFC is still ruminating. (Fangoria)

Speaking of IFC, if you like radio enough to pay for it (in the form of Sirius satellite radio) tonight on Fangoria Radio (Sirius channel 108/XM channel 139 at 10 p.m.) an IFC rep will be on hand to talk about Pontypool and Dead Snow. (Fangoria)

Finally, in just 30 days (June 1), the second annual Zombie Movie Marathon Month kicks off! That’s right, thirty zombie movies in thirty days, watched by yours truly and whoever cares to join me, either in real life or via the Intarwebs, watching the same movies or your own. Details will be forthcoming, but if you have suggestions for things I should watch, please leave them in comments or drop me an e-mail: cory.casciato[at]gmail.com.

Cemetery of Terror

Posted by Cory Casciato On May - 1 - 2009

cemeteryofterrorI’m fairly certain that Cemetery of Terror is the first Mexican movie I have ever seen. If it is indicative of the quality of the Mexican film industry, I am not sure there’s any point in ever seeing another.

Sloppy, confused and unintentionally hilarious, Cemetery is a haphazard mish-mash of plotlines and ideas stolen from other movies. My best guess is the director/writer saw poorly edited, bootleg versions of Halloween, Burial Ground: Nights of Terror and Children Shouldn’t Play with Dead Things — or perhaps just overheard some garbled descriptions of them in a crowded restaurant — and decided to combine them (and probably a few more that didn’t occur to me) into one big mess of a movie. The confused plot concerns a Satanic killer named Devlon, the psychiatrist that’s chasing him, six dumb teens (one of whom looks at least thirty) partying in an abandoned house, a bunch of prepubescent trick-or-treaters out for a night of stupidity, an impossibly detached police chief (who happens to be the father of two of the trick-or-treaters), an evil book that can raise the dead and a terribly unconvincing cemetery. The killer gets killed, but our doctor knows that isn’t the end and tries to convince the police chief of the danger. The dumb teens find the evil book in the abandoned house and decide to steal a body and resurrect it to impress/scare their dates (yeah, because what woman isn’t impressed by a stolen corpse?). During the ceremony it starts raining (in one localized spot only, of course) and they take off just before the corpse begins walking around. Then it’s slasherville as the reanimated Devlon takes out the teens. Then the trick-or-treating kids get to the cemetery (a local dude helpfully gives them a ride .. wtf?) just in time for some bad special effects to appear and zombies to rise, then the kids take refuge in the house, blah blah blah, doctor shows up, blah blah, evil book must be destroyed, blahty blah blah … until the inevitable twist ending (which actually is kind of amusing and does have a genuine, if nonsensical, twist).

As I implied earlier, this is not a good film. It is, however, a frequently (and unintentionally) hilarious film. The mullets; the bad acting; the heavily bearded, overweight “teen” that has to be ten years older than the rest of his friends; the bizarre Michael Jackson-embroidered jacket one of the trick-or-treating kids is wearing; the frantic overacting and obvious way many of the actors look offscreen for their cues; and so, so much more actually made this kind of worth watching for the badness. It’s not much of a zombie movie, since the resurrected killer is definitely more of a supernatural slasher than a zombie and the real zombies don’t show up until the last twenty minutes or so, whereupon they proceed to act vaguely menacing while being totally ineffective.  Come at it expecting a watchable movie and you’ll be sorely disappointed, but get a few buddies, get a little wasted and go all Mystery Science Theater 3000 on this bad boy and you’ll enjoy it.

Deadlines: News roundup 4/30/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On April - 30 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

Starting at Friday midnight GMT, Left 4 Dead will be free for 24 hours for PC players who are Steam users. I’ve already raved about this game a bit, but allow me to reiterate that this is one of the greatest zombie games ever. If you’ve avoided the temptation thus far, give in and try it. (Kotaku)

Speaking of greatest zombie games ever, Kotaku has a short interview with Dead Rising 2 producer Keiji Inafune. The big reveal is that there will be non-combat skills. Specifically mentioned is riding a motorbike in badass fashion. Some of them will help the character level up, like in the first game, but none will be photography, which should make some players happy. It’s a video interview, and it is embedded after the jump and there’s lots more in it about the first game and the upcoming sequel. (Kotaku)

The latest content release for Call of Duty: World at War includes another zombie-killing map called Shi No Numa (Zombie Swamp). I haven’t played this one because I am anti-WWII games, even if they have zombies. Enough, already. That damn war has been played to death. Still, maybe you feel differently, in which case enjoy killing some more WWII-era zombies. (Kotaku)

IFC has got ahold of I Sell the Dead, a movie about grave robbers starring Dominic Monaghan and Ron Perlman. It’s coming August 14 to theaters and on demand. Is it a zombie movie? Well, the trailer (helpfully embedded after the jump) shows some reanimated corpses, so I am going to say provisionally speaking, it counts. (Dread Central)

Special thanks to Kotaku for giving me most of my daily zombie news. You get a zombie cookie. To the rest of you, sorry for the lateness of today’s post. My life interfered.

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Deadlines: News roundup 4/29/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On April - 29 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

The Corbin Bernsen (LA Law! Fuck yeah!) helmed zombie feature Dead Air is looking for distribution at Cannes. The movie is set in a radio station during a zombie outbreak (like Pontypool!), shares a name with one of Left 4 Dead‘s campaigns and stars Bill Moseley. Still not sold? Hit the jump below and find a teaser trailer. (Dread Central)

New details emerge about Deadlands 2:  Trapped, a microbudget zombie epic sequel to the original Deadlands: The Rising (which gives me some urgency to see the original). Details include production stills, screening dates, the troubled search for distribution and what it’s like to make a full-bore zombie epic on a $6,000 budget (spoiler: it’s hard). (Fangoria)

Are you ready for yet another upcoming entry in the Nazi zombie subgenre? This one will be called The 4th Reich and it is revealed via a feature on The Soldier, the short that inspired it. Since I believe this particular subgenre may be cursed, I am not getting my hopes up. (Fangoria)

The Dead Rising 2 feast continues as Kotaku weighs in with some speculation about possible game mechanics, such as the desire for videography instead of the first game’s still photography. (Kotaku)

Have a Wii? Never played Resident Evil? Or maybe want to play it again? You are in luck, a port is being released with all of the original’s (actually, the Gamecube remake’s) clunky controls and murderous camera angles intact! Joy. (Kotaku)

To celebrate its one-year anniversary, Lost Zombies is sponsoring a 24-hour writing challenge on May 1. (Fangoria)

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Slow ride: Chopper Chicks in Zombie Town

Posted by Cory Casciato On April - 29 - 2009

chopperchickszombietownOh, Troma, your films are so crazy. So self-consciously crazy, and so cheaply and shoddily put together with only the barest hint of competence. They always seem like the kind of thing that was conceived over a lunch of cheap booze and bad tacos, written and produced during a two-day cough syrup bender and shot over a long weekend fueled by trucker speed, Old Milwaukee and shitty weed. Case in point: Chopper Chicks in Zombie Town, a melange of wacky elements thrown together haphazardly in the vague hope that something cool will emerge.

Those elements include an evil scientist/mortician making zombies to work in a poisonous, radioactive mine; a gang of women bikers called the Cycle Sluts; a busload full of surly, blind orphans; a dwarf. All of these collide in the kind of secluded, small town that only exists in bad movies and, predictably, mayhem ensues. Despite the promise of the ingredients, the film manages to be pretty dull, due to the slow pacing and generally inept direction and editing. It just took forever to get anywhere, the payoff once it got there was minimal and for a zombie movie, the zombies sure took their time joining the action. I didn’t hate it, but I doubt I’d watch it again.

The scientist/mortician was Don Calfa, of Return of the Living Dead fame (played a mortician there, too). Also of note is that it is Billy Bob Thornton’s first film appearance. He gets eaten pretty quickly.

Deadlines: News roundup 4/28/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On April - 28 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

Prepare to be thoroughly underwhelmed by Japan’s first foray into zombie movies when Synapse Films releases the pointless and dull Living Dead in Tokyo Bay (here’s my review) on DVD November 24, 2009. (Fangoria)

Speaking of Japan, the popular Resident Evil series gets a new Wii update with Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles, a shooter-on-rails installment of the poplar zombieriffic franchise. The devs promise near-Xbox-360-quality graphics but from the looks of the trailer I’d say they hit something more in the realm of “best-ever original Xbox” quality. Which is still pretty good. See for yourself after the jump, where I’ve embedded the trailer. (Kotaku)

Details are beginning to emerge about Dead Rising 2 as Kotaku delivers a short feature with some words from the developers and first-hand accounts of seeing the game in action. There’s apparently a lot “more”: more zombies, more weapons, more physics, etc. And a brand-new engine to fuel it all. But Kotaku wisely and correctly asks whether the new developers are paying enough attention to the “heart” that made the first game so awesome. And there’s  a trailer (courtesy of Inside Gamer), which you will also find after the jump. (Kotaku)

For even more Dead Rising 2 details, we turn to Eurogamer who has an extensive preview up. Highlight of the said preview is the confirmation that the game will have online multiplayer functionality. No word on what kind of multiplayer, but co-op would be the obvious choice/hope. (Eurogamer)

It’s a few weeks old, but if you haven’t seen it, you can also find an exceptionally intriguing Pontypool trailer after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

Deadlines: News roundup 4/27/09

Posted by Cory Casciato On April - 27 - 2009

deadlines

A daily roundup of all the undead news that shambles into view… Got news tips? E-mail me at cory.casciato[AT]gmail.com.

The march of new zombie movies continues unabated as Condition Dead 3D emerges. The zombie action flick will be directed by Patrick Lussier (director of the recent My Bloody Valentine 3D remake) and produced by Joel Soisson (The Prophecy, Pulse). (Bloody Disgusting)

If Craigslist postings selling props from Zombieland are to be believed (and personally, I believe everything on Craigslist is 100 percent true), Bill Murray is in the upcoming Zombieland. (Bloody Disgusting)

The sequel to the awesome Spanish first-person zombie flick REC (cleverly titled REC 2) will be out October 9, 2009 according to the countdown on the official site. If you are in Spain, this is good news; the rest of us will have to wait until it gets exported to wherever we are. (Horror-Movies.ca)

More zombie comedy in the shape of Zombie Ed. This one is about a loser who becomes a zombie, told from said zombie’s point of view. The poster sucks, the synopsis is poorly written and my faith in this movie is hovering between slim and nonexistent. Yet I will, without a doubt, watch it anyway once it is out. I am sick that way. (Dread Central)

It’s kind of old news (hey, I wasn’t doing a daily news post then…) but word is Nazi-zombie snoozefest Outpost is slated for a sequel. Color me not particularly excited. (Quiet Earth)

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