Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Return of the Living Dead (1985)

I watched this movie for the first time last night, expecting a horrible, throw-away movie that I would never watch again. Wow was I surprised! I loved this movie!

Freddy is learning the ropes at his new job at a medical supply store. His supervisor, Frank, shows him where they keep the human skeletons, the fresh corpses, the dissected-in-half dogs and all sorts of other weird and creepy stuff. Frank tells Freddy that the movie Night of the Living Dead was based on true events. He tells Freddy that the government was in possession of a chemical that re-animates dead corpses. One such outbreak occurred at a hospital, and somehow those re-animated corpses were shipped to their medical supply store and reside in the basement. Frank and Freddy head down there to have a looksie, but Frank accidentally releases the chemical gas.

Meanwhile, Freddy's punk (and new wave and goth and preppy) friends are waiting to pick him up from work. They have a few hours to kill so they decide to go to the Resurrection (nyuck nyuck) Cemetery across the street from the medical supply store to get the party started. Freddy has a very diverse group of friends - preppy Tina, punks Spider, Casey and Scuz, goth-like punks Trash and Suicide and new-waver Chuck.

Back at the medical supply store, Freddy and Frank wake up to find dead things are coming back to life. They quickly call the owner, Ernie, and after the three of them chop up a re-animated corpse and it still won't die, they decide to go to the mortuary by the cemetery and cremate the remains.

Burt is the mortician and after Ernie explains what is happening, Burt agrees to let them cremate the still-moving body parts. After they burn the body, the smoke drifts up into the atmosphere, but soon comes back down to earth as it starts to rain heavily. The chemicals rain down on the punks, who run for cover after they notice this rain burns! Soon, corpses are digging their way out of their graves and going after the punks.

Back at the mortuary, Frank and Ernie aren't doing too well - the paramedics come and tell them that technically, they are dead. They have no heart beat, no blood pressure, no temperature, and yet they are talking and coherent. Hmmmm...imagine that!

Soon, the remaining punks join those in the mortuary as they try and escape from the zombie hordes who just want braiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiinnnnnsssss...more braiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiinnnnnnnnnns!

Wow, this movie was completely enjoyable! It was funny, it paid homage to Romero, it had its gory moments and a well developed (yet simple) story. The acting was kinda over the top or just plain bad at times, but this worked with the overall campy and fun tone of the movie. The shock at the end is great too - they finally call an emergency number for the government, thinking they will get help, but...KABLOOEY!!

If you haven't seen this movie, watch it - this is one that DOES deserve its cult status!

Order it on Amazon!

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