DEAD CREATURESWritten, Edited, Produced, and Directed by Andrew Parkinson
Director of Photography - Jason Shepard
Jo - Beverley Wilson
Ann - Antonia Beamish
Sian - Anna Swift
Reece - Brandon Grogory
I found Andrew Parkinson's I, ZOMBIE to be a dreadful bore, like so many other films released under Fangoria Magazine's horror video label. The characters were flat and the film lacked style. After 20 minutes I hit the stop button refusing to ever try another Fangoria flick again. Renting DEAD CREATURES was a mistake I never plan to make again. Judging a film by its pedigree can leave one in store for a much appreciated rude awakening.
DEAD CREATURES is a film about women who are dead inside and out. Physically. Emotionally. Spiritually. Figuratively. Literally. DEAD CREATURES is a feminist take on sexual stereotypes and how they can leave women empty and rotting.
The fact that this is a movie about female zombies is irrelevant. Their suffering can be a metaphor for any number of things. Bulemia. Cancer. Aids. You name it. In the end' it's all the same. These women must face the end with only each other for support; to the world they don't exist.
Their days of filled with boredom. To pass the time, they sit around the house watching television and getting stoned. Getting high doesn't have the same purpose for these ladies as it does us. They get high for distraction, so they can have a break from the knowledge that they are going to die.
The only male figures we are given any time to connect with is a sexual predator and a deranged father with a savior complex. Neither is shown in a positive light; the sexual predator is himself one of the undead. He seduces young women so he can feed, effectively ending their lives and sentencing them to a world of torment until they finally rot away.
The father figure is a different animal altogether. He's TAXI DRIVER'S Travis Bickel reinvisioned as a man of the suburbs. He's aware of the undead sheltering themselves as they prepare to die. His daughter was one them. He spends his hours now hunting the undead and sending them to hell. Payback for the lose of his daughter.
The few other men we see scattered about are little more than radical fruitcakes or lunch. Men become mealtickets. To make ends meat some of the girls turn to prostitution. There's no fear of disease, they are already dying. What have they got to loose?
DEAD CREATURES centers around the bond these women share. New girls enter the fold, some move on. The ladies do what they can to help the newbies, and don't think about the ones who have passed on. That helps with adjusting to the change, and forgetting about what's in store.
No, DEAD CREATURES is nothing like I, ZOMBIE. They might cover similar ground thematically, but there's much more to DEAD CREATURES than meets the eyes. It's all about perception. They are both about how the dead see the living, but I, ZOMBIE comes across as cold and impersonal. DEAD CREATURES is deeply moving. It's about being human when you're not anymore. It shows what it's like to be treated as if you have no soul, while all the time you're holding on to the last little bit you have left.
The DVD for DEAD CREATURES is standard compared to the discs put out by companies like Tempe Video. There's an extremely fascinating, and self deprecating audio commentary by the filmmakers. 20 mintues of behind the scenes footage centering around production of the gore effects. The original Fangoria article announcing the film to the public. And finally a trailer vault of other Fangoria Video releases sans I, ZOMBIE. Somehow that seems fitting.
MTI Home Video