Saturday, 12 October 2013

Review - Zombie Flesh Eaters 3 (1989 - Dir. Claudio Fragasso)

A comedy intro scene kicks off the proceedings, involving a sub-standard Tina Turner impersonator writhing around and then getting sucked into the third gate to hell. The voodoo priest responsible has an altercation with some ineffectual military types and zombies are released as per usual. Intercut with this are scenes of a family who are all incredibly bad actors (all no doubt related to Mary's dad). They are legging it from some zombies. As you would if you were a loving parent, the mother gives her six year old child a necklace and tells her to run, because an infant can obviously run faster than a grown woman carrying an infant. Amazingly she escapes and years later the girl, now a lovely lady called Jenny (Candice Daly), returns to the island with a bunch of mercenaries. As you do. 

At this point I thought I was in for a straight re-run of the terrible Zombie Flesh Eaters 2. Although it's got a slight more coherent plot than the previous film, it is still a complete mess story and logic wise. Jenny thinks that she dreamt the whole zombie island thing but when some slightly strange things start to happen on their boat she immediately attributes it all to real zombies. Now, I used to have a recurring dream about a T-Rex in my back garden but every time I hear a strange noise behind the back of my house, I don't immediately think, oh no, dinosaurs! To make matters worse when a zombie does appear and takes a chunk out of someone's face she doesn't even comment on it. Not even a smug, I told you so.

Add to this characters that always take the stupid route and the problems just keep mounting up. Three researchers come across the Book of the Dead. One sensible lady (I have no power over her) decides not to read from it. The lad (specialist film star, Jeff Stryker) - who looks suspiciously like Action Man complete with eagle-eye action - has a little read but stops short at the mysterious words that will bring forth the dead (despite the fact that they're already knocking about on the island). The bloke leading the expedition charges straight in there and reads the words. Funnily enough all hell breaks loose.

So it's a shambles. But it's a funny shambles. The zombies in particular are a highlight. They're more like ninja zombies complete with hoods and a fair few have the ability to fly into scenes as if they've just bounced off a trampet. (I always knew there had to be a legitimate use for trampets.) At least they've made an effort this time as there are shots of them rising from the grave - very shallow graves, granted - wreathed in foggy goodness.

On top of the ninja zombies there are also some zombies that can talk and fire weaponry. Now, I know I've complained about zombies with extra talents in other reviews, Land of the Dead especially. In Romero films, I'm after a quality experience, that takes zombies seriously. Here, as in Nightmare City, I couldn't care less and the talking zombies only add to the humour.

This is a notch above Zombie Flesh Eaters 2, and it's quite enjoyable, although it is best seen after a few pints of tequila. 

 If you like this you could also try:
Zombie Flesh Eaters 2, Nightmare City, Zombie Creeping Flesh.

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