Sunday, March 7, 2010

Blockbuster Trash: House of the Dead 2

This update is late because I couldn't...blah blah blah.  Anyhow, one to the belated review.

We're back again with another Uwe Boll sequel...and it's also not made by him.  Instead, this movie claims to be made by the Sci-Fi Channel.  Yeah, we all know what that means.  Some idiot paid Uwe $50 for the license and they bought it.  This is basically the same thing with the latter Return of the Living Dead series (Parts 4 and 5).  So, what has changed?  Well, it's not an island, there are no returning characters- save for one cheat near the end- and it's just another generic zombie film...but with soldiers in it.  To be fair, the movie does have some shallow ties to the original, but it's just as easily called Kappa Kappa Brains (I dare someone to use this) or some other stupid title.  You see, this movie is set on a college campus.  Mind you, the actual aspect of being a campus as far as the movie is concerned only relates to the intro and the fact that this place has some school buildings.  It also boasts a bunch of D-Level celebrities in small roles that amount to nothing.  This is...
The film begins with a fake-out opening concerning some idiot frat boys (is that redundant?) going on a panty raid/soaking a bunch of girls with water guns party.  One of them snaps a picture of a man having sex with a co-ed student- hello, pointless nudity- and she runs off.  Out in the parking lot, car hits her and a professor walks out.  Hello, pointless cameo role by Sid Haig.  The man takes her to his lab, takes her clothes off- really, movie?- and injects her with a serum to bring her back to life.  It doesn't seem to work, but the man makes the same mistake as the janitor from Blacula and gets killed by the monster lady.  We get a long credits sequence that has a ton of zombie attacks spliced into it.  Why?  Well, as you can see in the Special Features section, all of these scenes were cut from the film and just thrown in here.  At a restaurant, a woman (Emmanuelle Vaugier) is on a blind date with a pointless ancillary character...I mean, a guy.  The chef goes outside to eat, but gets bitten by zombie Haig- who walks off and is never seen again.  The woman hears about the incident from a waiter- I guess they're buddies or something- and goes to the back, killing the now-zombified chef.  Outside, she breaks off her date and meets up with her partner (Ed Quinn, looking like James Roday) and they take a bite victim away in an ambulance.  Our heroes kill the man when he starts to turn, coating themselves in zombie blood.  Yeah, that's sanitary.
Our heroes arrive at AMS base and are greeted by their boss- a woman that looks like Chelsea Handler from E! Network.  They meet up with the soldiers that work for the company as well, one of whom is played by the maid from My Name Is Earl, and discuss a bizarre a side-plot event: the death of Quinn's brother.  It's never shown and barely addressed, so why include it?  The pair is told that a zombie outbreak occurred at a college campus- hence the credits scenes- and they must stop it.  Their secondary goal is to find 'Zombie Zero' and make a serum from their blood.  The pay-off to this is really dumb, so keep reading.  At the outskirts, Quinn gives a whole speech to the platoon leader ('Sticky Fingaz') about how they're not ready to kill zombies, but he disagrees.  On just the second zombie attack, one of them trips over their own feet- really- and the other is instantly-disarmed.  He attempts a silly-looking flip, but is bitten and 'put down' by the AMS workers.  When one man goes to help him, he too is bitten and shot as well.  Yeah, they're ready.  To make matters worse, they split up.  Oh and bonus points for putting the pre-requisite jerk character with your two female soldiers.  In fact, when they break into a room and kill a co-ed zombie, he asks them to take his picture with it.  They hang around too long and a mosquito bites him, infecting him.  Hey, this isn't SARS Wars!
While they leave him to die/turn, our main heroes wander around a library.  Yet again, they falter and our AMS heroes must kill the zombies.  Plus, the fat, comic relief guy actually acts smarter than the 'grizzled soldier.'  As the film goes on, most of the soldiers die and/or get turned.  Our heroes do the electricity kill from Return of the Living Dead 2 and we learn that the zombies are evolving to grow teeth that bite through armor.  Aw, I'll miss you, fat and stupid soldier.  Finally, an hour or so into the movie, we get the plot connection to the original film: Zombie Zero is the girl who was revived at the end of the film.  She got captured by Haig and now we have a (bad) plot.  After wrestling with her, they get the sample and kill her.  They escape by barely-shifting their way through a horde of zombies that just sort of reach their hands out.  Sadly, they lose the sample in the escape.  By the way, they have 15 minutes to get back before the place is blown up by the military.  After five minutes of arguing, the trio of survivors go back and work their way to the room...again.  They get a second sample, but the remaining soldier is bit and kills herself.  Vaugier is swarmed upon by zombies as well, leaving Quinn to leap away from the missile attack.  The bitten soldier from earlier tries to steal the sample, but is killed by Vaugier.  Yeah, she escaped the zombies and the blast.  Unfortunately, this sample is also destroyed, leaving our heroes to drive into a previously-unmentioned zombie apocalypse.  The End.
This movie is just really, really bad.  The writing is bad, the acting is bad and the execution is even worse.  Why did this have to be House of the Dead 2?  I mean, your one connection is a *new* flashback to a character from the previous film...who is not even played by the same actress.  Oddly, I didn't see Uwe's name anywhere in here, save for an acknowledgment credit.  So how did this movie turn out so shitty?  I think that they just did not try that hard.  They figured that the license, the idea of zombies and all their stupid D-Level stars would sell the picture.  One look at the DVD itself tells you a lot.  Save for the Deleted Scenes spliced into the credits, we get one that actually starts with the clapboard.  Guys, that's a Behind The Scenes thing, not a Deleted Scenes thing!  Avoid this one unless you love shitty zombie films and or want to see that the Boll apple did not fall far from the tree.  Oh and to avoid a question that you're probably thinking after these two weeks- 'No, I'm not reviewing Bloodrayne 2.'
Next up, Part 2 of my Two Evil Eyes review.  Can Argento top Romero's segment?  Well, Romero's did not have an acid flashback to the 1600s, so maybe.  Stay tuned...

No comments:

Post a Comment