Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Shatter Dead (1994)

Unusually ambitious and thoughtful for a low-budget zombie flick, this films posits a future where people simply stop dying. By that, I mean that while it's still possible for one's bodily functions to cease and one's heartbeat to stop, you would keep on walking and talking like nothing had happened. What we get is not just a splatter movie, though there is a lot of nasty gore; the film also functions as a philosophical rumination on mortality and the presence of God in today's world (what was that I was saying about not caring for theological horror flicks?). There's some powerful and haunting imagery, too (a shotgunned pregnant woman forcibly delivers her undead baby; a recently deceased character grabs some water off a faucet to simulate the tears they can no longer cry). Severely hamstrung by five-dollar production values and some truly piss-poor acting (Stark Raven, the lead actress, notably goes through the entire film without expressing a single emotion); still, there's a lot of worth in this movie.

Grade: B-