Tuesday, April 12, 2011

DVD REVIEW: The Walking Dead Girls (2010)


LABEL: Cheezy Flicks
RELEASE DATE: March 22nd 2011
AUDIO:  Dolby Digital
DURATION: 70 mins
DIRECTOR: Tyler Benjamin
CAST: George Romero, Bruce Campbell, Linnea Quigley, Boyd Banks, Lloyd Kaufman

PLOT: The Walking Dead Girls is a behind-the-scenes look into zombie culture in the United States and the obsession into ""Sexy Female Zombies"". What is it about Zombie Bimbos or ""Zimbies"" that are starting to gain the worlds interest? Why are zombies now in mainstream culture and seen in advertising from JCPenny and Sears? With interviews with zombie master maker George Romero and cult movie star Bruce Campbell from ZomBcon 2010 and so much more. Also with a rare look into the making of a Zombie Pinup Calendar, behind the scenes of ""Stripperland"" and ""Clublife"" Daniel Baldwin's hip hop Zombie music video debut. ""The Walking Dead Girls"" is a sexy look into the zombie phenomenon created by George Romero that is 40 years in the making.

FILM: What we have here is a breezy made-by-fans documentary that sets out to give watchers a glimpse into zombie culture through behind-the-scenes footage of the Zombie Pin-Up Calendar photo shoot and interviews with actors and directors of zombie genre film. It's a pretty casual affair hosted by the lovely and pink-haired Luna Moon.  The films starts off with a George A. Romero interview and rightly so, despite what some may think of his latest films the man undeniably redefined the zombie genre. It's a decent interview and while it covers stuff we've heard many times before on commentaries, interview, etc.  we do find out that George's favorite food is Middle Eastern cuisine. Sure, it's a fluff piece but it's always nice to hear Romero discuss his films, his legacy, and the social commentary found in all his films.  This interview pretty much sets the pace for the remainder of the film as most of the interviews are pretty shallow, not too in-depth and often off topic. Off topic like John Amplas the star of George A. Romero's MARTIN (1977) who seems an odd choice as that films is a vampire flick and has nothing to do with zombie culture other than Romero directed it. Don't get me wrong I think it's a fantastic film but it seems out of place here in this context. One of the more interesting interviews is scream scream Linnea Quigley who I recall so fondly from her iconic roles in RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD (1985) and NIGHT OF THE DEMONS (1988) as she discusses her career as a scream queen and her role in the forthcoming film STRIPPERLAND (2010) and she even demonstrated several different scream techniques, fun stuff.  The Ladies of The Evil Dead make a brief appearance and let me just say that these gals seem like a ton o' fun and even provided a group scream for the fans, and if I may say so Ellen Sandweiss is still an attractive lady. Speaking of the EVIL DEAD (1981) Luna Moon interviews Bruce Campbell who really comes across as an arrogant bastard who cared little to talk about zombies and instead plugs his TV series BURN NOTICE, maybe it was an off night but he seemed dismissive and disinterested. After the Linnea Quigley segment the interview with Troma impresario Lloyd Kaufman is a definite highlight. This is a guy whom is 10x more interesting than the best Troma film in my opinion. He's charismatic and well-spoken while discussing his introduction to film while attending Yale where he counted future Commander in Chief George W. Bush and director Oliver Stone as classmates. Kaufman who recently has been outspoken in regards to net neutrality recounts allegedly being asked to join the nefarious Skull and Bones society and the downfall of independent cinema distribution and television programming under various presidential administrations. A very interesting personality and it may be a bit surprising if all you know him by are the goofy Troma DVD introductions. And let's not forget the real draw of the film, the behind-the-scenes photo shoots with busty pin-up girls from the Zombie Pin-Up Calender. These were fun if redundant buts as the models are asked a series of similar question like would you rather be a zombie or a vampire and why. While I prefer a bit more substance in my docs this was a lot of fun and at only 70 minutes it flew by.

DVD: The film is presented in 16x9 enhanced widescreen and looks pretty good. It appears to have been shot on consumer grade digital video equipment, it's a real made by fans for fans production and there ain't nothin' wrong with that. There are no subtitles included or supplemental materials.

VERDICT: THE WALKING DEAD GIRLS (2010) is a fun spirited zombie culture documentary made by fans for fans and it definitely wears it's zombie heart on its sleeve. While I don't think it's particularly illuminating and it may have a ton of rewatch value it is certainly entertaining and includes zombie cheesecake photo-shoots with busty ladies made-up as zombies, so how bad could it be, right? Definitely not essential viewing but probably a fun rental for you zombie nuts out there. 2.5 outta 5