World of the Dead — The Zombie Diaries 2, 2011

When I sat down to watch this flick for some reason I was thinking about reviews and the people who write them.  The conclusion I had come to was that as a whole, us average movie-goers are much harder on movies than we should be.  This is not always our fault, as misleading advertising and pre-release hype (designed to rake in as much cash as possible before word gets out about bad films) inundates us constantly.  But still, a lot of the time writers, actors, and directors work pretty hard to give us their visions of whatever the subject matter, and I was of the mindset that we should try harder to respect that before we plaster our scathing reviews all over the internet.

So with that in mind, I give World of the Dead – The Zombie Diaries 2 mad props for really trying to deliver a thought-provoking take on the zombie genre.  Regardless of the Stupid Shaky Camera Syndrome (dubbed SSCS by moi) I put every effort to look past the minor flaws the film presented as they came at me.  Unfortunately, much like the lone human is eventually over-run by a horde of zeds simply because there are so many of them, the flaws in the movie eventually became just too many to ignore.

The film follows a group of soldiers in the UK as they try to survive a zombapocalypse first in a military outpost, but when that is overrun, their trek to potential safety at another outpost.  The entire movie is filmed with SSCS by cameraman/soldier “Jonesy” (Rob Oldfield), who would have been very helpful in all of the gun battles and zombie fights had he put down the damn camera once in while.  If he had, I am certain a few of his comrades may have lived to see a sequel.  Oh well.

The film is also presented in a sort of weird, spliced and choppy sort of way.  The live action is interrupted (repeatedly) with shorts of older footage of some bio-hazard suit wearing people performing what appears to be mass executions of seemingly innocent, but perhaps infected civilians.  This idea might be a good one with a film that was shot normally, but combined with the SSCS it ends up just making you slightly nauseous.  These two things do not work well together.

During their mad dash to safety, not only do our poor, reluctant soldiers have to deal with zombies (whose makeup was pretty good BTW) but they also have a run in (or two) with a pack of heathen bandits.  This bandit idea is by no means a new one to the zombie genre, and neither are some of the things they do to pass the time, so their heinous behavior didn’t surprise me.  However, for some reason — maybe the way the film was shot — some of the bandit scenes felt gratuitous and leached away from what could have been more impactful moments.   Suffice it to say that I felt way more sympathy for the flesh-eating, world ending zombies than I did the human bandits.

In the end, the only way to describe this film is action packed but boring at the same time.  There was constantly something happening, but it felt like nothing was happening at all.  It sounds crazy, and I hate to blame SSCS again, but that filming technique made me feel very outside of the action as opposed to a part of it.  It was kind of like watching a fish swim around in its bowl – you can see stuff going on in there, but you ain’t part of it and it gets boring pretty fast.  Alas, had this film been shot normally, it might have been pretty damn good.

FULL DISCLOSURE:  This movie is a sequel to the 2006 film The Zombie Diaries, which I have not yet seen and honestly, am not looking forward to viewing anytime soon.