Rounding out my Zack Ward horror viewing experience

zack ward beard

A couple of recent films super handsex…I mean, handsome…Zack Ward appeared in and also helped create have been on my “to see” list for a while. They finally hit Prime, igniting my OCD. So I checked out any and all horror films he’s been in that I hadn’t yet seen. That only amounted to two other films, both of which were also on Prime! So let’s get to these four, taking it chronologically.

THE CLUB (1994)

club 1994 cover

The Club is like a cross between a Full Moon film and Night of the Demons. In other words, a great gothic set is wasted on a lot of silly nonsense…and also used perfectly for some awesome demon scenes. Ah, mid-90s horror.

club 1994 candles

We are dropped right into the middle of a pretty damn amazing prom. It’s like something out of The Masque of the Red Death. The kids are all having their own personal dramas, and Zack in particular is a total dick, not having yet escaped his Scut Farkus past.

club 1994 urinal

Then the totally inappropriate guidance counselor (horror veteran Kim Coates) clashes with a mysterious outsider, causing time to stand still and most of the students to disappear, leaving a handful trapped in the building. The mysterious outsider begins to mess with their minds, subjecting them to supernatural experiences.

club 1994 cast

The problem is, most of the time we don’t see shit! Honestly, I had no idea exactly what these kids were running and screaming from for a majority of the film. Eventually, the mysterious outsider, played by actor JH Wyman (Prom Night IV) camps it up fantastically as he reveals his evil intentions.

club 1994 tongue

This is also when Zack goes totally demon…and shirtless! Linnea Quigley’s demon tits have nothing on Zack’s. Someone hand me the lipstick.

club 1994 demon zack

I can’t believe how long it takes for someone to turn demon, how extreme the demon design goes, how awesome a demon role reversal twist is…and that the film does not stick with a clear, concise demon concept.

club 1994 demon chick

Instead, it’s the usual convoluted 90s mess of uneven tone, terrible pacing, and schizo narrative.

END OF THE ROAD (aka: 1,2, 3…Scream!) (2011)

endof the road cover

End of the Road was on my “to see” list for ages and never seemed to hit any streaming service. Little did I know it was on Amazon Prime…under the title 1, 2, 3…Scream!

Consider this one a bonus in this blog because Zack is only in the opening scene…for about 2 minutes. He plays Zack playing a role in a movie being shot. I so want to lick that red-dyed corn syrup off his head.

end of the road zack

The rest of the movie is about a couple of guys from that film set who head off to work on a ghost hunter reality show at a supposedly haunted house.

end of the road house

Honesty, it’s hard to even call this a horror film.

end of the road ouija

After boring introductions of all the characters staying in the house, the movie is about a crazy person on the show’s crew forcing them at gunpoint to exploit tragedy to make the show a hit.

end of the road shot

What I’m saying is, there are no ghosts in this film. It’s lame. It’s really lame. The twist ending isn’t enough to save it.

RESTORATION (2016)

restoration cover

For this ghost film, Zack gets behind the camera (sure wish I was a camera), but he also has a role in the film. However, he isn’t the lead. He’s just the neighbor of the main couple that moves into a new home.

restoration zack couple

Zack and his wife are the welcome wagon and give the couple some minor background on what happened in the house before they moved in. But there’s more to the story, which the couple learns from a little girl’s diary they find in the walls.

restoration ghost girl

The little girl starts to appear to them. They both start to snap. Their marriage becomes strained. They research the history of the house. They visit a crazy old lady in a home who may shed some light on the sinister truth.

restoration crazy lady

It all seems about as derivative and predictable as these supernatural/haunting films get…but then come the twists.

restoration mask

Restoration even steps into home invasion territory and gets surprisingly violent!

restoration mouth knife

Plus, Zack, whose role was minimal throughout the film, takes charge to amp up the intensity of the final act, which elevates this one above the heap of forgettable films about young couples moving into haunted homes.

restoration zack

BETHANY (2017)

bethany cover

Zack is the co-writer of Bethany with the film’s director, James Cullen Bressack (of To Jennifer fame). Zack seems to be on a role, making seemingly generic haunted house flix that take wickedly fucked up turns at the end.

bethany couple

This time, Zack is the leading man, moving with his wife into her childhood home. His wife is played by Stefanie Estes (The Chosen, Slit Mouth Woman in LA, Apocalypse LA, The Bunnyman Massacre). She suffers from some serious PTSD being back in the house.

bethany wife face morph

Memories of her mentally abusive mother (played by Shannon Doherty) haunt her. And freaky hallucinations and supernatural occurrences convince her that her imaginary childhood friend Bethany is somehow manifesting in the house.

bethany face

A majority of the horror comes down to the usual—visions the wife has of things that aren’t really there, from bugs in food to Grudge girl rip-off territory.

bethany ceiling crawlOh, fuck me on a crawl space ceiling…

But it’s important to pay attention to the slowly building backstory of her childhood as shown in flashbacks and visions, because it all comes together when the really fucked up truth comes out.

bethany ghost choke

Just as in Restoration, Zack delivers a great performance that magnifies the intensity of the final act. What I’m saying is, Zack always gives me a happy horror ending.

zack naked

While we all contemplate why Zack hasn’t made a CHRISTMAS horror movie yet, here are a bunch of other Zack flix I’ve blogged about:

Alone in the Dark II

Blood Lake

Dark House

The Devil’s Tomb

Don’t Blink

 

About Daniel

I am the author of the horror anthologies CLOSET MONSTERS: ZOMBIED OUT AND TALES OF GOTHROTICA and HORNY DEVILS, and the horror novels COMBUSTION and NO PLACE FOR LITTLE ONES. I am also the founder of BOYS, BEARS & SCARES, a facebook page for gay male horror fans! Check it out and like it at www.facebook.com/BoysBearsandScares.
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One Response to Rounding out my Zack Ward horror viewing experience

  1. Paul Mackay says:

    Don’t forget Resident Evil: Apocalypse (2004), Zack Ward played a very hot russian called Nicholai Ginovaeff. Unfortunately he isn’t in the movie for very long, but he’s always in my dreams <3

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