Tuesday, July 26, 2011

New Release Review : The Dead And The Damned



When a group of gold miners unearth a dangerous meteorite, they unleash an intergalactic plague that ravages their town and turns the population into blood-thirsty mutants. It's up to a high plains drifter and his arch-enemy, an Indian warrior, to battle the zombies and save the Old West from the horrors of the dead and the damned.

Before cowboys do battle with aliens on the big screen this Friday, they first have to get through a horde of zombies in this just released flick, which is titled Cowboys & Zombies in the UK but was changed for the US DVD release for reasons that seem quite foolish to me. If you're gonna try and pull in some of the audience from an impending big time big screen movie whose book you're clearly taking a page out of, why not at least just go balls to the wall with the idea and try to fool people into thinking you're in some small way of the same ilk as that film? Inception Media Group, I think you could learn a few things from The Asylum, the totally shameless company behind such hits as Snakes on a Train and Paranormal Entity. But I digress.

Billed as both a Clint Eastwood style western and a George Romero-esque zombie flick, The Dead and the Damned is in truth nothing more than a poorly made western that eventually collides head on with an equally poorly made zombie movie. It begins with a CGI laden shootout between cowboys and cowboys and ends with a CGI laden shootout between cowboys and zombies, with the other hour and 15 minutes in between being filled out with a sloppy and utterly boring mismash of the two genres of filmmaking. The film seems desperately to want to focus on our hero, the most unbadass, contradicatory and unconvincing cowboy hero to perhaps ever grace a western, and his plight to bring to justice an Indian warrior who is clearly too soft to be the evil rape hungry savage he's initially portrayed to us as (surprise! he's actually just a misunderstood romantic!), but takes breaks every so often to bring us some lame zombie action with totally unnecessary boobage throughout, tossed in as an attempt to distract us from the fact that we're watching a shitty movie. I will say that there are some pretty tasty juggs featured in there, but even the most glorious of funbags could never distract this bearded viewer from the fact that he's watching a bad movie thats budget could've instead been used to save the lives of many starving children the world over. But again, I digress.

The Dead and the Damned is nothing more than an hour and a half of extended sequences of boring drivel, a bad zombie movie and a bad shoot 'em up western all wrapped into one CGI filled journey through the mountains of bad filmmaking and even badder acting. Oh and about those gun toting zombie cowboys and zombified horses that fill out the cover art. I'm not sure why, but I paid close attention to the movie through its entire runtime and never once did I see a zombie horse nor did a single undead cowboy ever pick up a big ass gun. WTF, mate?

Gotta admit that i'm getting more than a little tired of spending huge chunks of my nights several times a week both watching and then reviewing shitty screeners, but I guess that's the nature of the blogging business. As much as it pains me sometimes, i'm happy to be the guy who can subject himself to this stuff so you folks don't have to. But the thing that pains me the most about all these bad movies being made is the fact that there are so many good horror movies that either have trouble getting made or get made and can never seem to get released, no matter how many fans see them at festivals and absolutely love them. And yet, movies like this one not only get made but get easily released onto DVD on a weekly basis. So rather than waste any more of your time reading a negative review or my time writing a negative review, i'm instead going to use the rest of my typing energy for the night to do some good. So here goes that.

As you sit here reading this, the makers of Behind The Mask : The Rise of Leslie Vernon deperately need your help. Despite the fact that their film was a big time success among horror fans, they can't seem to get the funding for the sequel that they're dying to shoot. Yep, The Dead and the Damned got made but the sequel to a hit horror film cannot. There's something terribly wrong with that picture but instead of bitching and complaining about it, we can all band together and do something to bring about a change. Right now over on Facebook there is a fundraising drive going on to help Before The Mask : The Return of Leslie Vernon get made, with monetary donations earning you signed memorabilia, exclusive copies of the DVD once it comes out and even the chance to be killed by Leslie Vernon in the film. So instead of wasting our time harping on how crappy movies like the one this post is supposed to be devoted entirely to reviewing are, I urge you to head over to the Before The Mask Facebook page, take a look at the funding options available and consider helping out the cause. It's times like these that we need to take action, rather than sitting back and whining about how no good horror flicks seem to ever come our way anymore. Who's with me?

On a more closely related note, if it's a decent western horror flick you're after, be sure to check out The Burrowers if ya haven't yet.


MJ said...

That was a good write up, but the part that really stood out was 'WTF, mate?'. It sounds like you've been hanging with too many Brits or Aussie's!

Johnny said...

haha i'm not sure why that came out of me, but it just felt right in that moment!

Caffeinated Joe said...

I have this screener to watch, too. I have been putting it off. I told myself that when I watch it, if it is as bad as all the others I have had to sit through, it will be the last. Not worth getting free movies to watch if they are ALL crappy and a waste of time.