Land of the Dead 
Directed/Written by: George A. Romero
Featuring: (nominally) John Leguizamo, Asia Argento & Simon Baker
Category: Romero Zombies
Jump through each of our Twitter feed to see highlights from the chatter and riffing!
So on Saturday we three bloggers, Chewing on Glass, Little Fears, and Weird here teamed up to take on a Hollywood juggernaut with so many cast members, producers, and production companies that I didn’t even bother trying to narrow it all down this time: Land of the Dead. The original plan was to use Chili Black codes provided by Fears to choose a flick and then go MST3K on its ass.
A comedy of errors then ensued as I signed up with Facebook and was then immediately informed that my password and username were incorrect at each subsequent attempt to log in after I’d input my code. Then Glass encountered the same problem and we both began to suspect that a UK-based movie streaming service not work for us here in the States. Then Fears hit a snag with Land of the Dead not being on the selection of horror films his code was good for. That right there is some bullshit if you ask me as a gift card or code for a set amount of money ought to work on anything within that range on the associated service.
So the three of us headed to Amazon to rent the movie. I built a station out of boxes since my apartment has no tray tables (I’m really slacking on that bit of indispensable hardware.), routed each of our Twitter feeds through a potato, and sacrificed a single-serve bag of Cheetos to appease the Collaboration Gods so that this might all go according to what was a quickly deteriorating plan. Then we all hit play.
I probably should have gone with the puffed instead of crunchy because the potato exploded during film sync, resulting in skin all over the couch and a knock from the neighbors. The effort wasn’t in vain however because, while the connection wasn’t perfect and we were all several minutes either ahead or behind, it did remain stable and we were able to collectively watch and razz on the movie with an acceptable degree of precision.
Oh, right. Movie.
The Zombies: The dead are beginning to mime activities from their former lives. One zombie, “Gas Screamer”, is seemingly smarter than the rest. After a supply run where things go South and the living beat a retreat while taking out a lot of his fellow dead, Screamer gathers up an army of zombies and, through a combination of screaming, pantomime, and strength, gets them organized enough to start a march to the last island hold-out of Humanity in the area. With Screamer to guide them, a lot of the dead start getting “smarter”, either remembering their old skills or acquiring new ones along the way. The living might be faced with more than they can handle…
The Humans: So, before Neegan, there was John Leguizamo. He did a lot of work for Dennis Hopper yet was still denied a place in Fiddler’s Green, the luxury island high-rise where the remains of upper-crust society live while the common rabble live a harder life in the buildings and slums around it. Leguizamo gets pissed and steals a giant engine of doom, Dead Reckoning, from the garage and threatens to use it to take out Fiddler’s Green in Hopper doesn’t meet his demands. So Hopper sends Simon Baker and a mixed team of Characters and Fresh Meat after him. Thing is, Baker has his own plans for Dead Reckoning; either way, Fiddler’s Green is probably about to wilt…
Favored Ability: DEX/CHA. Keeps a fairly brisk pace with plenty of great zombie effects and gut-munching scenes whenever the film starts to slow down.
Special Collab Rating: 6/10 [+2 Collaborative Combo, +2 Dead Reckoning, +2 Flesh Eating]
The plot’s a coat hanger for a big-ass Car of Doom and an excellent assortment of featured corpses and gut-munching scenes, and I’m totally fine with that. Being part of a collaborative effort with two fellow horror goons was great so I’ve already signed all the necessary forms for any future projects that might happen. A fun night to be a part of and an excellent way to revisit a movie that I haven’t watched in a long time. 😀