Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Zombie '90: Extreme Pestilence (1991)

Like most of Schnaas' movies, most people who watch it hate it. That's a shame 'cause this is actually a pretty entertaining trash movie. So far I had only seen some of his more 'recent' work: Nikos (2003), Unrated: The Movie (2009) and Karl the Butcher vs. Axe (2010). I wasn't really impressed by any of those movies, but I'm really digging this earlier work.

A military machine carrying untested lethal chemicals crashes into a forest, a dead patient comes back to life in the operation room and mutilated bodies are being found all over the country. A new epidemic has broken out, the "Extreme Pestilence". Two doctors discover the epidemic and take on the hopeless fight against the living dead. The only way to kill the zombies is to destroy the brain or seperate the brain from the rest of the body. 

The dubbing is one of the most discussed subjects of Zombie '90.... It's absolutely brilliant! Main character 1 is one of most German-esque dudes I've ever seen, yet he has the voice of blacksploitation hero Shaft. Meanwhile main character 2 has the voice of the stereotypical gay guy. Together they form an amazing duo, especially when they start rambling hilariously weird one-liners. The dubbing absolutely makes this movie. While watching the movie you'll get the feeling that they didn't know what was in the original script, and they just thought of dialogue on the spot. Whether that's true or not, it does make for some very entertaining dialogue. Some might find it childish humor, but I like it.

The gore isn't amazing. Believe me, there's enough blood, guts and limbs to keep it entertaining, but the splatter itself isn't of any remarkable quality. A nice addition is that the zombies use knifes, sledgehammers, machetes and chainsaws to kill and mutilate their victims. This creates a nice variety of deaths.

Quality wise it shouldn't come as a surprise that this movie fucking blows. The editing is atrocious. Numerous times scenes are abruptly cut. Also, one of the main characters has a way too obvious double roll as a zombie. Looks like they couldn't even scramble together enough extras. As far as camerawork goes, there's one nice shot, which is an homage to Zombi 2 (the zombie hand touching the glass while looking through the window in POV). Also notice how during a fight between a random guy and a female zombie, the cameraman has more interest in the female's ass than in the actual fight, causing the camera to awkwardly zoom in and focus on the ass multiple times. Quality wise the best thing about this movie is probably the soundtrack. It was apparently done by a guy named Gregg Parker (this is his only credited movie), who created a piece of music that could have easily been used in one of those 80's Italian zombie movies. Near the end of the movie you can see that Schnaas is really struggling to reach 70 minutes of film, causing some drawn out scenes.

Anyway, Zombie '90 is one hell of a freaking ride. The dubbing and countless scenes of (fake) violence make this one entertaining as hell. I have no idea if this was ever released in German, but I imagine it would be a whole lot less fun. The American dubbing made me laugh my ass off numerous times. I'm not claiming this is a good movie. But it made me enjoy my evening, so why should I bash it....?

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