A script from Sidney Iwanter, Mark Onspaugh, & Scott Thomas, who also served as director, brought together a complete fun b-movie that never takes itself seriously, and yet comes extremely polished Flight of the Living Dead: Outbreak on a Plane [FOTLD]. Some have attributes that Thomas’ film actually holds the position of a parody of Snakes on a Plane (2006) rather than a straight horror film, however Scott’s film laid in pre-production first, and beaten to the finish line, by another movie. FOTLD aka: Plane Dead, meanwhile is not social impacting dynamic zombie flick, rather, it stresses having a suspension of disbelief in mind at the terminal and check before pre-boarding, as this is a pure junk food express lane carnage candy filled with cheesy dialogue, all fine for those seeking a destination of escapism.
FOTLD title technically gives away the location of the film and the sub-title tells what happens, thereby informing the viewer of the plot. Though to dig a tad deeper three scientists board a plane from Los Angeles to Paris, and in route have a troublesome experiment in a cooling unit in the cargo hold, add in numerous airport themes, references to other horror films, and this passenger liner becomes its own horror show. Some of the clichés, come from a late-night flight, more than half empty, a major storm, a crew member on the final trip, a couple to join the mile-high club and a hand-cuffed prisoner (who knows how to fly a plane). In addition, two surfer dudes have a football toss in mid-flight over the head of a nun, and later a zombie will have an umbrella jammed into their mouth. The insanity never turns down, it only grows louder and crazier, as the secret cargo awakens from turbulence, containing a military virus to have a dead soldier to rise up and fight on against the enemy, thanks to insane wisdom of Dr. Bennett (Erick Avari). Some horror fans will notice Captain Banyon is none other than Raymond J. Barry of Christmas Evil (1980) fame.
The zombie sub-genre of horror films contains incredible works that best left buried never to resurrect themselves ever again, and while Romero known for social and political contributing zombie films, some tend for the pure gore-hounds delights. FOTLD, does not contain the social graces, rather it is all campy and one wonders if Roger Corman’s school of film studies was not deployed in the making the movie. This movie contains carnage and more blood soaking, smears, spurting than many other productions however it does not out-do Zombie (1979).
As far as location, the plane itself, the living dead zombie army can tear the floor apart from the cargo hold, however a homemade alcohol fueled bomb doesn’t blow a hole in the aircraft. Then add that the Paris, France flight, nearly empty, by the end of the zombie horde there are more them than actual passengers. Now it might seem if this analysis condemns the movie, no, it only shows the mindless mayhem fun filled with goofy dialogue and deadpan moments. Actors Derek Webster (doing his impression of Tiger Woods), David Chisum, who uses a submachine gun in cargo and never misses or hits the fuselage, Kevin J. O’Connor (Lord of Illusions ) as a con artist filling the movie with silly one-liners. One last member of the flight crew battles alongside the men, with a believable feisty mentality from Megan (Kristen Kerr). However, a cool goof plays into the zombie feeding grounds a reflection in the eye-glasses and here again the errors even make the flick even more outrageous fun to enjoy. Note the film does not have a parody at every point, and just enough comedy to keep the audience entertained, the best line, comes from O’Conner and his encounter with an elderly zombie, “She’s gumming me to death!” One must not forget to mention Air Marshall Paul (Richard Tyson) who’s dialogue rivals Kevin’s, especially when shooting the zombie (and it seems one does not need to shoot the head to stop them or as he states, “Two in the chest and one the balls works for me.”
If you like watching zombie movies, regardless of their position in the annals of history of the sub-genre, then enjoy this hilarious flick. While it claws at Snakes on a Plane, it contains, more violence, more gore, and endless amounts of blood, and one has the opportunity to root for the zombies to gnaw and tear apart the annoying passengers. Sorry, no crying babies on this flight.
This review originally posted in March 2015 on the defunct website Rogue Cinema with 1,724 view count.
- Un-Dead at 30,000 Feet.
- Fly the deadly skies…
- If it’s in your blood, you’re just plane dead!
- Flight of the living dead.
- A flight you wish you had missed.
IMDb Rating: 5.2/10
Baron’s Rating: 5.0/10