Awaken the Dead Review

9 out of 10 Skulls
Written by: Goon   

Zombie films are the most popular thing nowadays for an independent filmmaker to do. But I think in some cases it can be a calling card for disaster. Now any joblo can pick up a camera, gatther up his friends and make a film. So now everytime a independent zombie movie comes my way I have to wonder whether it will be any good or not. Keeping that in mind I have seen some really fantastic indenpendent zombie films as well. Gary Ugarek and his crew have put together there own little film that is recieving high praise from just about everyone as I write this review. So will this movie follow suit? Read on...

The movie begins with a man who is obviously in the middle of a huge crisis. As he stares at the half empty bottle of whiskey on his dresser he begins to don his shield, a priests collar. This get up allows him to cover up his past and try and move on with his life that he has left behind. Unfortunately for him his past has caught up with him this day as a red envelope sends him back to an old mentors home.

As soon as our "hero" Christopher enters the home he is attacked by his old friends daughter, Mary. She has a whole slew of her own problems including a disgruntled "boy friend" and one bad attitude about everything. As they are arguing within the home little do they know that chaos is about to erupt as a silent bomb goes off turning some resident Asian hotties into zombies. Soon the virus begins to spread and they are forced to take in survivors.

Christopher and Mary grow closer and begin to question why her father would want them both in the same home. As they unravel secrets about their predicament their true colors begin to reveal themselves. Chirstopher's past has now over taken his pacifism and his previous job as an assassin for hire shines though. Mary on the other hand has grown up on the streets and slowly we begin to realize that she may not be as rough and tumble as we thought.

Soon they begin digging and discover that they must exit the house and head to a church. But to get their they must navigate through a sea of blood thirsty zombies and maybe someone else even more deadly. So why make such a deadly trip? They must meet with Mary's father to discover what is behind the zombie epidemic.

This is one of those zombie films that you really can't get enough of. Its not really because of all the zombie goodness though it is the kick ass characters in the film. Gary Kohn who plays Christopher in this film is like a very slim Bruce Campbell.. No joke. This guy has some of the best dialogue in the film and some of the best action sequences. Awaken the Dead I think added a fantastic element of gun-fu that I have never seen in a zombie film. Except maybe in Undead but it was no where near as well executed in that film. Kohn looks menacingly bad ass in priests outfit with guns blazing. Its just a fun ride.

Lindsey Morris plays Mary and she is fantastic as a war torn woman who has come out fighting. Not to mention she is pretty damn easy on the eyes. Not the kind of beauty that is a dime a dozen in Hollywood but that girl next door look. Hopefully we will be seeing plent more films from her in the future within the genre. We need some more kick ass femme fatales and Lindsey sure as hell gets my vote.

I guess my only gripe would be that there isn't alot of extreme gore. There is one particular scene in the beginning of the film that really kicks things off but other than that I would have like to have seen some more. But that is just nitpicking at a small detail. When you have characters like this that are so interesting and really work well together it is really hard not to like it. Lets just say I have my fingers crossed hoping for a sequel.

Awaken the Dead has a little something for every horror fan. Zombie fans will love it because there are plenty of zombies to be had in this film. Gorehounds will be able to get their fill with some decent looking effects that do their job. The everyday horror fan wil just love Gary Kohn and the performance that he pulls off in this film. It was announced not to long ago that Brain Damage Films will be releasing Awaken the Dead on DVD on November 6th. So keep your out for this one. You don't want to miss it!

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