“Night of the Living Dead 3D: Re-Animation” Review

jason May 1, 2012 0
“Night of the Living Dead 3D: Re-Animation” Review

Director: Jeff Broadstreet

Writers: Jeff BroadstreetRobert Valding 

Stars: Andrew DivoffJeffrey Combs and Sarah Lieving

“Night of the Living Dead” is a fascinating topic for conversation. The original George Romero film is in the public domain because they neglected to copyright it in 1968. That means it’s totally legal for you to remake, copy, and/or distribute. There are literally dozens of VHS, DVD, and Blu-ray copies of “Night of the Living Dead.” It’s actually free on Hulu, Google, and YouTube, so Romero doesn’t seem too bothered by it (the guy started an insanely popular sub-genre. I’m sure he’s fine.).

As of right now, there are two remakes of “Night of the Living Dead” with three more in production. One remake was directed by Tom Savini in 1990 (and it was actually pretty good) and the other was directed by Jeff Broadstreet in 2006 (which I haven’t seen, but the next sentence alone suggests it’s terrible). “Night of the Living Dead 3D: Re-Animation” is a prequel to the Broadstreet remake, “Night of the Living Dead 3D.”

“Night of the Living Dead 3D: Re-Animation” takes place before the zombie outbreak and suggests the origins for the infection/virus/mutation/phenomenon/act-of-God/T-or-G-virus/parasite/sickness/lack-of-real-estate-in-hell. No one on the planet seems to remember this, but there is an explanation of the Zombie outbreak in the original 1968 version. The mystique of it here does add a layer of spookiness, but it was radiation from a returning space shuttle. This is a remake, so creative license is allowed, as long as it’s well executed and written (for example, there were not a lot of complaints about running zombies in the remake of “Dawn of the Dead”).

“Night of the Living Dead 3D: Re-Animation” stars a mortician named Gerald Tovar (Andrew Divoff) and his brother Harold (Jeffrey Combs). Gerald inherited the morgue from their father and Harold went off to be his own man. After his business fails, Harold returns to the morgue in search of money. Little does he know, the basement is full of corpses that come back to life and eat the flesh of the living. Apparently, any corpse that comes through this morgue reanimates. There is also a necrophiliac assistant named DyeAnne (Rbin Sydney), a stoner second assistant named Russel (Adam Chambers), an eager-to-work newcomer named Cristie (Sarah Lieving), and an awkward Sarah Palin knock-off named Sister Sara (Denice Duff).

This movie has some problems. For a movie like this though, I could get passed the cinematography (really bad), the effects (worse), and even the acting (shockingly solid). But the one thing I can’t get behind is the incredibly sloppy premise. I didn’t get it. I felt like I missed entire scenes, and had no idea what was going on in any of the characters’ heads. Motivations seemed sporadic and every character seemed devoid of rationale. There’s some elbow room in campy horror movies, but at least I know Ash wants to go back to 1992 and not be stuck with a bunch of dead-ites in 1300 A.D. And here are some examples…

SPOILERS I THINK…

Gerald and Harold’s father used his morgue to cremate bodies for the government. Then they asked him to burn a mystery bag of goo – now corpses reanimate at his morgue. The dead zombie dad is tied up in the basement, and he’s been there all-along. So, the zombie outbreak is due to a government goo that reanimates dead bodies. Gerald has been keeping non-cremated bodies in the basement, and when they re-awaken he kills them. Why? I don’t know. If he knows they’re going to reanimate, why not just hit them in the head with an ice pick before they get up?

Eventually all the zombies get up, Sister Palin shows up (I forgot why), and all hell breaks loose. Gerald and Cristie kill them, but then Girald uses some zombie juice to turn Cristie into a zombie (I think). I’m not sure what Gerald’s motives are. He seems to want to keep the morgue so he can keep an eye on the zombies, but why turn Cristie into one? Why not just cremate them? I’m not even sure how the zombies got out to lead into “Night of the Living Dead 3D.” I don’t know. Maybe I missed something. Go watch the original. It’s free.

HOW WAS THE 3D?

I don’t know. I watched it on a 2D television.

HOW WAS THE WISHMASTER (Andrew Divoff)?

Great. He should do the voice for audiobooks by Clive Barker.

HOW WAS THE RE-ANIMATOR (Jeffrey Combs)?

Also great. He should do the voice for the Riddler in any animated “Batman” movie or show.

WISHMASTER VS THE RE-ANIMATOR

I’d watch it.

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