Shocking Saturday: Doomsday

This Shocking Saturday film comes to you on a Sunday because I couldn’t get the DVD to work. Nonetheless, this week’s film is ‘Doomsday’, a personal favourite of mine, mainly due to the fact that it is a British horror and stars some great British actors like: Bob Hoskins, Rhona Mitra, Malcolm McDowell and Adrian Lester.doomsday-2

Set in the dystopian future of 2035, 25 years ago an infection called the ‘Reaper Virus’ began to spread in Scotland. Fearing for the country, England built a giant wall and quarantined Scotland off. The wall worked, the infection did not spread to England, however because of the decision the country made, all diplomatic lines from other countries were cut off, including the USA.

Unfortunately the Reaper Virus has resurfaced in London, and the government has had the bright idea of sending two APC vehicles with eight men over the wall to find a doctor named ‘Kane’, because rumour has it that he had found a cure.

Believing that the majority of the population had died out, this mission seemed like a piece of cake. Go in, find the doctor, retrieve the cure and then save the country. What they did not take in to account is what happened to the people who had survived the infection. Splitting up into two communities, the people who had resided to the countryside and returned to the medieval age, and the people who had stayed in the cities and became crazed, blood-thirsty cannibals. Unlucky for our characters, they run in to both sides.

One of the best aspects of this film has to be the costume department, if not for the ancient knights-of-old armour of the medieval realm, then definitely for the cannibals who look as though they are at a massive punk-rock show, with humans for a pre-show snack. The violence is also top-notch when it occurs, though usually it is people being crushed by cars, nevertheless, the audience are treated to buckets of blood.

The film was directed by Neil Marshall, who is also famous for directing some other great British horror films; Dog Soldiers and the film which scared the life out of everyone when the night vision was turned on, The Descent. With a bigger budget than his previous films, Marshall, used the movies which had influenced him when creating this picture. ‘Escape From New York’ (1981) by John Carpenter and ‘Mad Max’ (1979) by George Miller, he even named two characters ‘Carpenter’ and ‘Miller’ in tribute to the film makers.

Through this film we see what the British government are willing to give up without a second thought just to save their own arse, and it was good to see a horror film which made me question the English government and their decisions.

Doomsday ends as fast-paced as it began, with an incredible car chase between the remaining characters and the cannibalistic crazies, which provides some amazing explosions and deaths, with the odd head flying off.

Tag Line: Survive This.

Horror Rating: (:-O) (:-O) (:-O)

Star Rating:

Shocking Saturday: Juan of the Dead

Although this weeks ‘Shocking Saturday’ is not an actual horror film, it is still a horror-comedy, and I thought that it deserved a review because it was different to anything I had seen before.

‘Juan of the Dead’ is basically the way it sounds, it is a Cuban zom-com (zombie-comedy). After the success of ‘Shaun of the Dead’, in 2004, it was obvious that more films like it were to follow; ‘Cockneys vs Zombies’ and ‘Zombieland’. However this film is slightly different as it is based in Cuba, so it is directed from a different point of view during a zombie apocalypse, as oppose to English and American.Juan-of-the-Dead-Poster

The film follows ‘Juan’, a nobody who is just looking to make some money and reconnect with his daughter, thank fully all it takes are hoards of zombies to go running through the streets and begin munching on people’s faces. Originally the attacks are blamed on dissidents revolting against the government, but it soon becomes obvious that something completely different is going on. So what is the first thing that comes to mind when trying to survive a world of zombies; find supplies, get shelter, a plan to get away from the infection. Not for ‘Juan’ and his pals, their first thought is ‘how can we make money from this?’. Gathering together whatever weapons they can find, the 6 of them begin handing out flyers to anybody that is still alive and create a business called ‘Juan of the Dead’, claiming ‘we kill your loved ones’. Going round to people’s houses and killing their infected family members, and then charging them for it. Usually in some very amusing ways.

After a lot of killing, and a lot of boozing, the gang realise that they should actually get out of the country and begin to formulate a plan to leave Cuba.

Although the acting in parts is a bit weak and the story-line sort of drifts about, let’s not forget this is a low-budget horror-comedy, so that is to be expected. What we really want to see from this film are good make-up effects and some light humour. Which it delivers. Offering loads of memorable zombie kills, mixed together with comedy which will be enjoyed by viewers from any country.

The film does get slightly monotonous near the end, but the unbelievable, slow-motion fight scene in the end credits shows what a low-budget horror-comedy can offer. Concluding the film on a high note.

Tagline: 50 years after the Cuban Revolution, a new Revolution is about to begin.

Horror Rating: (:-O) (:-O)

Star Rating: