It’s been a long time since I wrote up a “Watching Bad Movies” review, but I thought it was time. Over the long holiday weekend I watched several movies, including Zombie Diaries 2, aka World of the Dead.
The original Zombie Diaries was, in many ways, what a World War Z movie should have been. It follows several groups, shows people not believing the zombie apocalypse, and survivors who meet with a horrible fate, both from the walking dead and from other humans who have taken advantage of the situation to become the worst possible examples of what our race is capable of. It’s a true gem of a zombie movie.
Its sequel is not.
But damn it, it tries. The film is mostly told from the point of view of a soldier, apparently documenting…well, something. A base in rural England from what we can tell. There’s a bit at the beginning with a family celebrating a little girl’s birthday which goes horribly wrong when zombies invade. It has literally nothing to do with the main narrative, but it’s probably the scariest part of the film. There are also interspersed bits with chem-suit clad soldiers rounding up civilians and executing them for…well, they never say why, other than they just are. These are not video segments and are jarring in the middle of the “found footage” film. Also, if you don’t know that the chem-suited soldiers are the folks you’re watching escape from zombies by about the second clip, you’re as gullible as this filmmaker hopes.
The plot of the film is fairly simple. Some idiot leaves the gate open at the military base and they are overrun by zombies. Four folks, plus the camera man, escape, including one of the survivors from the first film. They make their way to the coast to catch a boat to Rotterdam before the entire island is nuked to deal with the zombies. Along the way some folks die, they run into the douchebags from the original movie, there’s zombie rape, and a lot of talking about how they feel about zombies rising up and killing everyone. If this sounds like the plot to about twenty other zombie films, it’s because it is. There’s nothing original or interesting in this film.
The worst part comes, however, at the end, when they discover (SHOCK!) the boats aren’t there to take them away to the magic land of Rotterdam. Instead they find a bunker full of dead soldiers and their leader sort of loses it. Wow, what a surprise. The remaining two survivors are quickly overwhelmed at the base, because the filmmaker has no concept of closure. Or maybe he does, because suddenly the film shifts to a regular movie format and we see the leader run into a couple who have just escaped to the island from…can you guess?…yep, from Rotterdam. Because it was overrun and is on fire. It was all a lie! Oh the humanity!
I actually felt, watching the movie, like they made it up as they went along. It doesn’t feel cohesive. Things just happen because they happen. Granted that makes it feel like real life, but real life is, in general, boring. And every possible cliche is used – if someone goes off to take a leak, they’re going to be attacked. If someone says they will stand watch, they will fall asleep. It’s all so pathetically obvious that it feels like you just watched a bad tabletop gaming session of All Flesh Must Be Eaten.
I’d recommend skipping this film, which is currently on Netflix. It’s just not worth the time to watch it.