Protestors and loggers are in conflict over the cutting of trees on an isolated island. Unbeknownst to both groups, the logging company has been experimenting with something dangerous, and when this substance gets into the blood of an injured logger, he becomes a flesh-eating zombie, quickly spreading the virus. The son of the chairman of the board flies in to see why contact has been lost, and is quickly caught up in the desperate battle for survival.
We have, of course, seen most…of the elements here before: the evil corporation responsible for the zombie plague and determined to contain it (hello Resident Evil and company), the squabbling survivors (cheers, Night of the Living Dead), the apparent site of safety where the humans turn out to be more vicious than the undead (ta, Day of the Dead), and the reason for the zombie spread, while borrowing from 28 Days Later, lacks that film’s logic (why exactly WOULD a plant hormone turn people into zombies?). But never mind. The gore is copious, the performances are strong, and the setting is used to fine advantage. The pace is quick, and the result is one of the better zombie movies to lumber our way this year.
The 5.1 track does wonders for atmosphere. The music is very atmospheric, with terrific front/rear separation of the elements. Plenty of spooky sounds and cues travel from one speaker to another, and the sound effects do well in creating a sense of environment. The gunshots are intimidating in their echoing volume. Good stuff.
The film is grainy, looking very much like it was blown up from 16 mm, but this, along with the slightly washed-out colours, helps rather than hinders the film’s effectiveness: this is a gritty, messy, bloody movie, and style and substance meld nicely here. Blacks and contrasts are excellent, and despite the (deliberately) muddy textures, what’s going on is always clear.
Nothing but a handful of trailers.
Proof that there is life in the old shambling corpse yet. Lots of bloody fun.
Special Features List