Can you intentionally make a zombie movie that’s so bad it’s actually good? Ancient zombie movie theorists say yes and point to the Zone of the Dead, a hilarious horror comedy with zombies coming to us from Serbia. Yes, Serbia, this is their first zombie movie in history and I hope there will be more. So, the first thing you need to do in this sort of production is to get the right cast. And with Mr. Ken Foree, star of the original 1978 Dawn of the Dead, they have done that. Mostly because he will be the counterbalance to all the bad acting you simply have to have in this sort of production.
And where’s bad acting there’s always a bad and formulaic script and boy is this one something or what? “So many years, so many memories,” when he said that line I almost choked with laughter. Although I should not assume this was intentional I’m still going to. Now, visually, Zone of the Dead looks relatively decent. There will be some tricks and shaky camera shots but nothing too distracting. The story chugs along nicely and the atmosphere is just so much fun. You keep guessing what’s the next cliche they’re going for, hoping it will be the one you picked.
The thing I liked most about it were the old-school practical effects. We will get phenomenal makeup and gore and what could you want more from a zombie movie? And throughout all of this, they took themselves incredibly seriously. This is why Zone of the Dead works so well. It will bring back memories of all those eighties zombie movies. Especially when it comes to the story that starts back in 1985 with all the things that come with it.
A discovery of the mass grave is never a good thing and the inspector assigned to this case knows this all too well. When he arrives at the scene, he learns that someone even cut himself on the ribcage of one of the corpses succumbing to a horrible infections minutes later. Twenty years later, a Serbian town of Pancevo is off limits to everyone because of a military exercise. Or it seems to be. At the same time, Interpol is transporting a very dangerous prisoner through Serbia. And their path takes the directly…
It goes without saying that there are many things in this movie that could have been done better. However, exactly because of this, each scene provides you with the opportunity to either say wow or start laughing. And the fact that this is a small Eastern European production just adds to that. If you saw Eurotrip, you’ll know what I’m talking about. However, they sure do have some beautiful actresses and actors.
Zone of the Dead is the first movie that our directing duo Milan Konjevic and Milan Todorovic ever made. It’s a beautiful and carefully thought out love letter to the zombie genre. Did you notice that agents have the same names as famous special effects artists?
Agent Bottin – Rob Bottin (The Thing)
Agent Nicoterovic – Greg Nicotero (Day of the Dead)
Agent Savini – Tom Savini (Dawn of the Dead)
So, get your friends, get some goodies to get properly fucked up and get ready to have some fun because this is that type of a movie. And it ends with a gloriously bloody finale that will leave you wanting more.
Directors: Milan Konjevic, Milan Todorovic
Writers: Vukota Brajovic, Milan Konjevic, Milan Todorovic
Cast: Ken Foree, Kristina Klebe, Emilio Roso, Miodrag Krstovic, Vukota Brajovic, Steve Agnew
Fun Stuff: Pancevo appears to be one of the most polluted cities in Serbia.