Judge Jon Mercer has found something that reeks worse than the living dead...this movie.
And then there were only…2
It's a story that modern horror fans are certainly not unaccustomed to. A man—in this case, David (C. James Roberts)—awakens in the midst of a world that seems utterly devoid of life. He remembers society, he remembers streets teeming with people, but he has no clear memory of the events that have led him to this juncture. It's at this point our story takes an interesting turn to the undead.
Wait, did I say "interesting?" Forgive me. I must have still been thinking about 28 Days Later. Rest assured, nothing quite so exciting happens in 2, a movie that moves at so lethargic a pace even the shambling corpses themselves are liable to turn around and yell for it to try and keep up.
I can understand the appeal of trying to craft a low-budget horror movie. As a boy, I succeeded in taking home every available VHS tape in the horror section at Allan's Video. I don't know how any gore hound couldn't look at Sam Raimi or Peter Jackson's early output and not think it looks like a ton of fun. Crafting a proper scary movie is a labour of love. 2 is hampered severely by the restraints of its nonexistent budget, and simply doesn't bring anything to the game that hasn't been done a hundred times before and a million times better. Even when a twist arises in this most barren of plots, it feels like a cheap knock-off of something from a superior zombie flick. There are the briefest of mentions made of biological terror attacks, but these are so tenuous that it reminded me of a "Laser Cats" sketch on Saturday Night Live. In between the abundance of shots of Sarah (Molly W.B. Roberts) weeping, or David staring blankly at an old radio set, the rest of the movie seems comprised of watching our two survivors eat canned goods, and shots of the undead horde gathering outside (where amazingly enough, even after the zombie apocalypse, the winter roads are still freshly plowed). It must be stated that 2 either uses stock footage of a less than enthusiastic "Zombie Walk" (Google it), or features some of the worst makeup effects I've ever seen in the realm of the zero-budget. Any horror fan knows not to set their expectations high when dealing with movies like this, but seriously this stuff looks like it was done at home by the volunteers playing the zombies. There's no sense of consistency.
2 is presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen and has a Dolby 2.0 stereo mix, both on the pitiful end of the spectrum. The picture is soft and murky, especially when colour filters are used. There's a sickening level of video compression, complete with all the little problems that can cause. The audio is hollow and tinny, even coming from a smaller production company. This works wonders for the "generock" heavy metal score provided by Covered In Bees, who I imagine are a local metal band from the Maine area where the movie was filmed. On the extras front, the disc is armed with a Photo and Production Sketch gallery, a Behind the Scenes featurette that goes down like a thick slice of sadness pie when you hear the filmmakers speak in such an excited manner about the makeup effects, and a trailer.
Zombi-holics, gore hounds, Fangoria subscribers, I implore you…if you're looking for 90 minutes of throwaway entertainment, keep looking. 2 isn't so much a movie as it is a chilling reminder that if you have nothing new or relevant to add to the conversation, maybe its best you kept it to yourself.
God, I hope there's no 3.
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Scales of Justice
Studio: Slingshot Entertainment
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