Some highschool chums in Sussex, none of whom look more than fourteen or fifteen, without the least pretention detectible, made their own Afternoon of the Living Dead (2008) with surprisingly natural acting ability & enormous sense of humor.
Three teens are walking along when they encounter a littler kid who is apparently a zombie. After one of the guys is bitten, they kill him.
The bitten dude falls comatose then awakens as a zombie. His pals beat the crap out of him but can't bring themselves to kill him, so another guy enters the film with a pistol, & shoots the zombie. The little kid earlier killed turns out not to be completely done in, & there's a funny bit with him getting his face kicked in by yet another Irish lad.
There's now four guys & they lay a plan for surviving the coming zombie invasion. They'll stock up on food from MacDonalds, hang out in the playground, & kill any zombie who comes along. They have firecrackers, knowledge or "origami & jiujitsu," some limbs or sticks, a tripod with pointy feet, so they're pretty sure they well enough armed to handle the project.
For eight & three-quarters minute they fight child zombies, eat junk food, & hang out. Now & then they address the camera, aware they're in a documentary.
It's amazingly entertaining for such a dorky minimalist film. Children making & starring in movies just rules. Like all the films reviewed on this page, it was viewed on youtube.
A five minute short, Afternoon of the Living Dead (2006) has a fellow in leather jacket arriving home, wondering who left the door open. He announces loudly to himself, "This is truly a mystery!"
Momentarily he encounters two zombies lacking zombie make-up. "Oh no! The mindless undead! Eeee! Eeee! Eeee! Wait! I must defend myselfk!" He beats them up with what appears to be either an innocuous spaghetti strainer but it's a badmitten racket.
The zombies recover as our hero chants "Oh god!" for a while. The zombies then begin to dance, & our hero plans to put them on Broadway.
Cast credits are to "Gismo" as the hero, with NobodysLuxord & cherkyicesucky as the zombies.
The Bloomington, Indiana director was only sixteen years old when he made this. He credits himself only as NeoShadow8, & has named his micro-production company Pickle-Weasel Enterprises, which references the television sit-com That 70s Show, & is a term since defined as "indicative of stupinity."
This kid seems genuinely inspired by the spirit of dada, & doesn't care how bad his tiny films are so long as they win a grin. He has other funny crappy films on youtube, so look him up.
By the by, the poster at the top of this page for Afternoon of the Living Dead is not for NeoShadow8's film, & I've no idea what film it is for, or if it is only a spoof poster of a non-existent film. If it does exist I'll review it on this page when I find it!
Afternoon of the Dead (2007) at only four & a quarter minutes was a prize winner for the Dogfish Head Short Film Contest -- which doesn't bode well for the quality of the losers. All the films entered had to advertise Dogfish Head beer.
A guy (Sean Brooks) gets in his car & drives home only to find zombies all over the front yard. "Oh my god!" says he as he jumps back in his car. Zombies surround his vehicle & he's trapped, screaming.
Inside the house, a woman (Noelle Zappacosta) is doing dishes oblivious to zombies. She hears her husband screaming & finally goes into action.
She hurriedly gets a bottle of Dogfish Head beer & beans the zombies, saving her husband. One of the zombies (Jason Giaccone) grabs the bottle away from her, opens it with his teeth, & drinks it. Turns out all the zombies prefer Dogfish Head to human flesh, & all's well that ends well.
Our next Afternoon of the Dead (2005) begins as a pleasant enough amateur music video, a lovely couple & their cats relaxing at home to a pop tune by Francoise Hardy. The videography is massively out of focus.
When the girl is out of the room, however, the guy starts kicking the cat around the house, then grabs its paws & pretends it's beating him up.
Apparently cat-scratch fever causes zombification. After the comedic fight with the cat, the guy dies. The girl, watching the news, hears that the recently dead have been coming back to life to commit murders.
Apart from the whimsical notion that cats create zombies, this is one of the worst of the youtube zombie shorts reviewed here. When not merely out of focus, the videography is so dark you can't see a thing.
It appears that corpses are scrabbling out of their graves (or standing up from crouching behind tombstones) but you can't really see anything. If you could see it, it doesn't really look like anything is happening but shambling to heavy metal music (such as most of these amateur filmmakers regard as de rigour for a zombie short).
Even at under fourteen minutes, by minute eight it's gotten so very boring. It was so tedious I started hoping for more cats, but the idea that cats cause zombies was not really developed.
It fades out with some barely visible feasting, loud music (by Septic Flesh) continuing. Behind the credits is Fela Kuti singing a pretty decent classic Nigerian world-music piece called "Zombie" from the 1970s.
Less than ten minutes, plus a half-minute trailer, the elegantly shot black & white Afternoon of the Dead (2008) stars two kids about age eight, & more little kids as the zombies. The director, who plays the first zombie, appears to be nine.
A "married" couple, Nancy & Roger (incestuously cast with brother & sister Emmett & Maddie Wertz), are planning to visit grandma when they are waylaid by a zombie.
Roger has a gun & blows away the zombie in the bedroom, but he leaps up in order to be killed again later. The couple rush back to the RV to get the heck out of there, but they're out of gas. So they hide in the back of the vehicle. Nancy warns, "We barely have any food. We only have like three apples."
When they run out of bullets they decide to take a walk to the gun store. The gun store is a guy (the director's father Steve Ramsey, the only adult in the film) who stands outside his garage to sells amunition to children. Re-armed Roger starts shhooting at zombies again.
It's not much of a script, but amazingly good for a nine year old, I mean the kid's a little genius. I was writing stories at that age, but mine were vastly inferior to this script. I hope Wyatt stays ahead of the curve as he matures! Sometimes bright kids have fallen behind the curve by the time they're sixteen, & by the time they're thirty & living in mom's basement still seem surprised they're dumber than everyone else.
The kid actors do pretty well. The whole damn film is sweet as the devil, cuz how cute are children with a gun. Plain fact is, it's a better mini-movie than most of the similarly-titled zombie movies on youtube made by adulots.
There is an amusing coda to the film, as we see the movie on a computer screen & the camera sweeps into the full color world, with one of the kids reviewing what just played. "What a stupid movie!" says he.
You'll have gathered by now that when zombie filmmakers of amateur status try to be clever making zombie films, they pretty much think alike, right down to the "clever" play on George Romero film titles.
A young British director made the ten-minute zombie flick Afternoon of the Dead (2007) in what he called the "old school" style, in black & white. The photography is not too bad given the no-budget natureof the thing, the soundtrack is functional, & the acting is better than one expects from any "hey, let's make a movie!" one-day project.
Two guys (Jaimie Jonston & Jos Fletcher) & a gal (Julia Stenton) with beers & one Jaimie carrying a skateboard are hiking through a well-trimmed park or field. Suddenly a shambling zombie appears but the three youths don't notice.
They find a bench & sit down to enjoy the view. They haven't noticed the cheaply made prosthetics strewn here & there.
Prosthetics will be shown throughout the film, hanging in trees, laying on the ground, always ridiculously manufactured to look very little like actual limbs, with lingering close-ups so you'll know it's a joke. And you know what? It's damned funny.
As Jos & Julia begin spooning on the bench, skateboard dude Jaimie walks off on his own & encounters the first zombie (Greg Smith). "Hey! You all right?" Snort, shamble, snort, shamble. "You look trashed!"
Crows caw & another zombie shows up. Skateboard dude is bitten. Spooning couple hear him screaming. "What was that?" asks Jos. "Yooz being paranoid," says Julia. "Must be Jaimie" observes Jos, then ignores the further screaming.
Jaimie has his arm ripped off (another of the cheapo prosthetics) & a close-up of a zombie mouth shows him eating what looks like oatmeal or overcooked white rice. I guess red dye number seven was too pricy for the budget.
A zombie shambles up behind the couple & despite growling & stamping along they don't hear him until he rips off the young man's head, which looks surprisingly like it's not his head at all. The growling zombie chews on the head-like shape with eyes painted on. Very & the serious zombie movie soundtrack makes it funnier.
One shambling zombie has a meat cleaver. Zombies stagger after the girl. It's all wonderfully goofy. Be sure to stay through the credits for the grin-worthy coda.
In the same director's prequel Earlier that Afternoon of the Dead (2008), color videography supplants the more elegant black & white. At only three & a quarter minutes, it's just not much.
The location in a junked up fieldy by a huge tin quansit hut & a ruin of a stacked-rock cottage could've been used for something better. For more than two minutes the characters just jabber. They're boozing crackheads.
Near the end we see our first & only zombie, just a young guy with a bit of red stuff on his face. He attacks the guy who went outside to piss in a bucket, while laughing like a mechanical clown. Then credits role.
After the black & white film one expects more of this young director, but apparently since leaving film school he hasn't really pursued this interest, so he's getting worse rather than better.
Continue to the next nest of zombies:
Messiah of Evil (2005)
copyright © by Paghat the Ratgirl