Zombie horror caught live on body cams

Found footage style zombie film Live Escape and its sequel Live Survivor are best watched in a single sitting as one long movie, because the second film picks up where the first left off, and in my opinion is actually the better of the two.


This little indie feels like a simplified take on the Quarantine vibe, and I had fun with it. If I have one complaint, it’s that the film should have been trimmed down from 90 minutes to 75 or 80 minutes. The contained setting and limited number of characters lead to a lot of repetitive action to fill the time.

We follow two cops on their body cams as they respond to a call about a situation at a homeless shelter. Before long they’re having run-ins with infected people in the maze-like building.

The film stars the writer/director Joe Lujan and cutie Bryant Smith, who looks hot in a police uniform and rox a sexy mustache like nobody’s business. They become trapped in the shelter and are chased and terrorized by infected people that keep popping up in the beams of their flashlights. EEK!

Other than a few survivors they stumble upon briefly, the cops are the only two living characters in the film, so there’s a whole lot of running around in circles in the same locations since they can’t get out of the building, which is only so big.

Also noticeable is that perhaps some of the dialogue was ad-libbed, because the F bomb is excessively inserted into sentences to the point of distraction.

Despite that, the limited camera view throughout the dark hallways creates atmosphere and tension. Shaky cam, blurring, and distorted focus add to the chaotic feel, and there are even some nods to first-person shooter video games, plus what to me feels like an homage to the settings from the first Resident Evil video game.

Of course it’s all about the horror action, so don’t be looking for any new or unique plot—it’s as common as it gets and very reminiscent of the plots of zombie video games. While the final frame can and probably will be read as final, through the wonders of movie magic, the cops live to see another day…


The sequel begins with an origins opener that shows the infection spreading to scientists experimenting in a lab…

Next, we meet a guy who is pulled over by the two cops from the first movie, after which he and his female companion are attacked by zombies. For reasons I don’t understand, this sequence is done found footage style, but it’s a damn good scene. Anyway, they escape into the same building the cops did, and it’s more intense and scary than anything in the first movie.

Pretty soon, the couple encounters the cops, who end up right back where they started. Oddly, the cops don’t immediately realize that they narrowly escaped a feeding frenzy in the final frame of the first film by running right back into the same building. The good news is that Bryant Smith is all disheveled from running away from zombies, and he looks like he just had really sweaty sex.

After settling in, the group splits up. The cops search a lab area, while the couple tries to stay put in what looks like the halls and rooms of the Resident Evil mansion.

The branching focus on two sets of characters makes this sequel faster-paced and less repetitive, and the zombie scenes are thrilling and exciting. There are even some creepy, new mutations.

And as much as the film seems to end with the survivors being swarmed, which is exactly how the first film ended, I have a feeling that movie magic might lead to a third installment. If there is one, I’ll totally be watching.


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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