Serving as both director and co-screenwriter with Sky Tilley, Brett Mullen presents an interesting wrinkle into the zombie genre; with this homage film to some very well and often overlooked Italian gore epic undead movies, and an added treat for horror fans thoroughly to enjoy. This film switches gears sometimes abruptly to jolt the viewer from a static lull, between campy to a dramatic influence referencing the talents of Lucio Fulci.
Many people state that love makes one do crazy things, hence ex-CDC Dr. Carter (Rob Springer) takes the statement to the extreme as he searches and experiments fanatically for a cure to return his wife from the dead and recreates failed attempts in the form of the living dead. His wife, Lisa portrayed by Kathy Butler Sandvoss, who gained attention for her role in Jack Thomas Smith’s highly acclaimed Infliction (2014). The viewer has various misaligned tests flashing before them, as a voice-over narrative tries to explain the reasoning of his actions. However, soon he begins to spiral into madness, with grave robbing adding to his resume, along, with kidnapping, murder, assaults to nature and humanity, before harming one of two his daughters, Cara (Alex Elliott), the other Denise (Jess Barbour). Herein the film takes a different path, instead of full-blown transformation into a zombie, she as part of an anti-serum, and with some wonderful visuals one witness of the disease attacking her brain. Cara and her sister go to extremes (something natural for this family) to secure more of the serum from the original creator of drug, a large leap of connection for the audience and yet it works on some level. One must not overlook the actor Larry Parks for his portrayal of Sherriff Parks, just enough to side on serious but yet feels as if he has own version of Charles Bronson showing through the seams. Larry brings the suggestive moments, and rare moments of charm and twisted delightful humor, a quirk that heightens his delivery of lines. For many of the cast this film serves as a reunion, as they had work on anthology film Vault of Darkness (2009), hence the experience presented itself for the understanding of how to react for horror film, nothing for example Larry had a role of a zombie.
The attention to tone and detail comes across exquisitely, and there’s quite a bit to Zombie (1979), from the music, and the band Goblin, and hints referencing musical genius of John Carpenter. The creation of the zombies contains an equally adventurous design and one a limited budget exists, the uses of creative shot angles, low fog, and glowing fluorescent paint, enhances their creepiness. A wonderfully created decapitation scene occurs thanks to a well-placed shovel a treat for gore-hounds and then shoving Carter’s assistant’s head into a zombie cage for the disrespect to his work, and enjoys watching her face clawed and eaten off as the screams echo, highlighted by excellent choice lighting. Then the divine homage to Day of the Dead (1985) with involving a cast member lying down on the job with dead, not wanting to spoiler others fun, the individual will remain unknown for the viewer’s tantalizing enjoyment. The struggle to maintain originality comes from the lack of a strong budget the plot leaps courageously over holes, and tries from meandering in to the wilds of the forest, Mullen pushes the cinematography at times, but never ruins the moments of well-crafted arts.
While the movies theaters crowd the market with redos, reboots and now re-calibrations of previous horror concepts, watering them down, to pitiful puddles on red food coloring, the low budget independent film market grows rampant with the creation of new interesting stories. Summing up the movie in a one-word answer – fun, this movie constantly moves forward, with constant zombie film references to the 1980s, and the only negative the title, Bombshell Bloodbath, never fits the film, and leaves the viewer confused over the intention of it. Although, in the end, a full onslaught of the zombie apocalypse occurs, and southern individuals branch out to take down roaming groups of the undead in various tactics, including one woman, dressed in daisy duke shorts, most unbecoming in the battle. Yet, this carnage truly displays the passion of blood thirst and divine pleasure in killing these empty soulless creatures.
This review was originally published in March 2015 on the now defunct Rogue Cinema website with a view count of 1,718.
- Just a little chemical reaction
IMDb Rating: 3.8/10
Baron’s Rating: 3.5/10