As usual, I’ve turned my attention to lesser-known zombie films on streaming services, including KL Zombie, Dimension X, and one I’d been hoping to see for a while called Stag Night of the Dead. I had put it in one of my streaming service watchlists, but by the time I circled back to that watchlist, it was gone. I finally located it on SnagFilms, one of those free services that shows uncut films but has commercials. I kind of live for those services, because I can often find obscure, lost stuff I’m looking for that never seems to make it to Prime, Hulu, or Netflix. But enough of my rambling about free streaming services. On to rambling about the movies.
STAG NIGHT OF THE DEAD (2010)
After leaving a strip club with a stripper in tow on the night of their buddy’s bachelor party, a bunch of guys take him to “Zomball,” a place that lets you run wild and kill zombies with hardcore laser guns. The one rule…never humiliate a zombie. What could go wrong?
With a title like Stag Night of the Dead and the premise it’s working with, this simply should have been a lot more fun than it is. I definitely enjoyed the opening scene, which features the bachelor hung upside down, wearing nothing but a thong and being whipped by a mistress, plus plenty of the guys are cute in this sausage fest.
Even the zombies are pretty cool looking, and there’s plenty of action, but the film just doesn’t revel in its concept.
This should be a film about boys being bad, and while it has its moments, it is way too restrained. For instance, one guy falls for a naked zombie girl, but when he thinks she’s about to blow him…well, you can guess what happens. And you’ll have to, because the film doesn’t go for the gonads, cutting away instead.
Stag Night of the Dead ends up being…”cute,” where I was prepared for something funnier, quirkier, and more over-the-top. I mean, look at the poster art! Hell, I’m not even straight and I’d say these dudes seriously don’t know how to throw a bachelor party.
This could have been the “getting married” equivalent of the “getting divorced” party that is Doghouse. Instead, it’s nothing more than your average SyFy Network zombie flick with a couple of pairs of tits.
DIMENSION Z (2017)
Patrick Rea, director of Nailbiter, brings us a 70-minute zombie anthology. Actually, I’m wondering if this isn’t just a compilation of some of his short films because it is not listed under his filmography on imdb, but he has a load of shorts on there. Plus, when you watch the film, you sort of have absolutely no idea it’s anthology until you get to about the third or fourth story. There’s no wraparound and no breaks between tales, so it flows continuously like one long film.
That’s what causes the initial jarring shifts.
For instance, the first “story” is simply a chaotic, confusing first person scenario in a house, and then the next thing you know, we’re in regular third person mode and plunged into an entirely unrelated situation in the woods.
Many of the tales here are so short and fragmented that there’s not much of a story. It’s more like you caught one scene from a longer horror movie so you have no way of establishing context of the moment.
But other tales are better self-contained and entertaining, including: a campy one about a young woman whose friend decides to come back from the dead after committing suicide; a Halloween tale of revenge from the grave; and what is essentially “opposite day” in the zombie universe. Awesome.
KL ZOMBI (2013)
This zomcom comes to us from Malaysia, and it’s about as lighthearted as you can get—aside from all the stuff with the zombies biting people. It’s sort of like Shaun of the Dead meets The Stuff.
The stuff this time is a miracle cream. Flashy commercials with the spokesman for the cream seem to be riffing off the “Gangnam Style” craze that was infecting every nation at the time this film was made.
As the popularity of the cream spreads, so does the zombie outbreak. People begin eating ravenously and spitting up blood.
Meanwhile, our nerdy hero is busy delivering pizzas on his motorcycle, totally oblivious to the fact that all hell is breaking loose. After some shenanigans with his best bud, including a trip to the cemetery and mistakenly thinking the guy is trying to take his virginity, it really does appear this will be a zombedy buddy movie.
But it becomes a little less predictable than that, and our lovable hero teams up with a couple of school kids as he sets out to save some of his friends. The young girl doesn’t speak but kicks zombutt. However, the young boy has great chemistry with the lead and steals the show with his funny lines and goofy reactions. He looks like he’s having so much fun being in a zombie movie.
Plenty of action, some light comedy, and an unexpected twist make this a charming little film that reminds me of the more playful horror films of the 80s like Night of the Creeps and Return of the Living Dead.