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Author Topic: Survival of the Dead (2010)  (Read 1945 times)
Vik
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« on: May 29, 2010, 09:27:52 AM »

6th of Romero's dead series.

Small | Large


The last three were pretty good zombie movies, but can't compare to the first 3 IMO
Thoughts ?
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Trok
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« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2010, 04:45:46 PM »

George Romero = George Lucas
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Neville
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« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2010, 10:51:47 AM »

I wouldn't go that far, but he certainly could do better. I sort of enjoyed this last zombie film. It tries to go to a different place than the rest of the series, putting the main characters between a war of sorts between the two leaders of an island community. Sort of a werstern-themed zombie flick. And it has some great bits, such as the best use of a grenade ever in the gunfight at the docks, but Romero constantly fails to achieve the adequate mood. Things take too long or too short to happen, the mood of many scenes fails because of wooden acting or subpar filmmaking... This is one of those films that works here and there or can occasionally offer something different because it's not made according to Hollywood standards, but you end up missing just that.
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Monster Jungle X-Ray
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« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2010, 09:51:32 AM »

I actually enjoyed this one much more than the last two Dead movies. It does fall short in that it does not really even seem like a full on zombie film, but more of a sort of Yojimbo type story. Some of the special effects were rather lame (notably the CGI at the beginning), but at other times they were very effective. Overall though I thought it was a solid entry in the series, and if Romero sees fit to update the time period from his own earlier films then at least SOTD is a direct sequel to the last one with some of the same characters. 
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Jim H
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« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2010, 02:40:37 PM »

Pretty crap.  Bad writing, mediocre acting, ludicrous twists (the horse thing), very cheap looking production, a pointless storyline (honestly, there's no real point or message or even main idea uniting this, aside from a very weak "treatment of the dead" thing), an unbelievable western motif, bad characters (with one or two exceptions), poor action scenes, mediocre CG gore.  Just, blah.  

In general, I think if this had been a straight-to-DVD release by an unknown director, it'd already be basically forgotten.

4/10.
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Cthulhu
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« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2010, 06:41:11 AM »

It wasn't bad.
It was kinda stupid though.
So what if zombies eat horses? They still eat humans.
And how are you going to teach the other zombies to eat animals? They aren't going to take a crash-course.
Still, I didn't regret seeing it.
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Starsky
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« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2010, 07:10:29 AM »

Pretty crap.  Bad writing, mediocre acting, ludicrous twists (the horse thing), very cheap looking production, a pointless storyline (honestly, there's no real point or message or even main idea uniting this, aside from a very weak "treatment of the dead" thing), an unbelievable western motif, bad characters (with one or two exceptions), poor action scenes, mediocre CG gore.  Just, blah.  

In general, I think if this had been a straight-to-DVD release by an unknown director, it'd already be basically forgotten.

4/10.


Dude you have signed up for the wrong community the fancy schmancy movie club is somewhere else. We are all about the cheap
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Jim H
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« Reply #7 on: June 14, 2010, 06:01:38 PM »

Pretty crap.  Bad writing, mediocre acting, ludicrous twists (the horse thing), very cheap looking production, a pointless storyline (honestly, there's no real point or message or even main idea uniting this, aside from a very weak "treatment of the dead" thing), an unbelievable western motif, bad characters (with one or two exceptions), poor action scenes, mediocre CG gore.  Just, blah.  

In general, I think if this had been a straight-to-DVD release by an unknown director, it'd already be basically forgotten.

4/10.


Dude you have signed up for the wrong community the fancy schmancy movie club is somewhere else. We are all about the cheap

There's a difference between BEING cheap because of a lack of money or other such issues VS simply not using well what you have (compare it to Dawn of the Dead, which took a quite modest budget and used it EXTREMELY well).  Survival of the Dead looks cheap and feels LAZY.  And I really doubt, in adjusted dollars, that Night of the Living Dead has anywhere near the budget of Survival, and it's a far, far superior film and looks much better on several technical levels.  My conclusion here is Romero is simply losing his touch.  Or has already lost it, if this film and Diary are anything to by.

Hell, Colin sometimes looked better (poor video quality aside).  And that particular zombie film has a $70 budget.  

Of course, even if the film had looked fantastic, the bad writing and storyline would have sunk it no matter what.  

Edit to add: for comparison here, in adjusted dollars, Night of Living Dead's budget is around $700,000.  Dawn has an adjusted budget in the $1.65 million range.

Survival's was $4 million. 
« Last Edit: June 14, 2010, 06:07:03 PM by Jim H » Logged
dean
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« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2010, 04:12:14 AM »


One of the reasons behind the low budget nature of Romero's last two films is that since Land of the Dead he's been going the independent funding route, and as we all know, independent generally means low-budget.

I for one enjoyed Diary of the Dead, but I have to say, the plot of this one looks a little funny.  Still, it'll be another zombie film to watch and that's always fun!
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Starsky
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« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2010, 02:17:14 PM »

Pretty crap.  Bad writing, mediocre acting, ludicrous twists (the horse thing), very cheap looking production, a pointless storyline (honestly, there's no real point or message or even main idea uniting this, aside from a very weak "treatment of the dead" thing), an unbelievable western motif, bad characters (with one or two exceptions), poor action scenes, mediocre CG gore.  Just, blah.  

In general, I think if this had been a straight-to-DVD release by an unknown director, it'd already be basically forgotten.

4/10.


Dude you have signed up for the wrong community the fancy schmancy movie club is somewhere else. We are all about the cheap

There's a difference between BEING cheap because of a lack of money or other such issues VS simply not using well what you have (compare it to Dawn of the Dead, which took a quite modest budget and used it EXTREMELY well).  Survival of the Dead looks cheap and feels LAZY.  And I really doubt, in adjusted dollars, that Night of the Living Dead has anywhere near the budget of Survival, and it's a far, far superior film and looks much better on several technical levels.  My conclusion here is Romero is simply losing his touch.  Or has already lost it, if this film and Diary are anything to by.

Hell, Colin sometimes looked better (poor video quality aside).  And that particular zombie film has a $70 budget.  

Of course, even if the film had looked fantastic, the bad writing and storyline would have sunk it no matter what.  

Edit to add: for comparison here, in adjusted dollars, Night of Living Dead's budget is around $700,000.  Dawn has an adjusted budget in the $1.65 million range.

Survival's was $4 million. 


What could have been improved in your opinion, tell us in detail. Just to yell bad CGI and writing is pretty lame.
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Jim H
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« Reply #10 on: June 16, 2010, 04:11:29 PM »

OK.  That's not all I said, but I will elaborate a little.  It's a little harder to write about now, as I saw it a few weeks ago and so little was memorable I've already forgotten a good deal.  This is a scattershot, no structure to these critiques.  These are just critiques, as I don't really feel the need to suggest to many improvements.  Romero clearly can (or once could) do better.  So I'll just list a few more details of what I thought was done WRONG.

SPOILERS below.

For a start, we needed more interesting characters.  Aside from Patrick O'Flynn, few characters are interesting.  Crockett has some slight development, but he never really moves beyond a gruff "sarge" type.  Tomboy is a lesbian.  That's about all we get.  The kid who joins them can shoot, that's all we ever get.  Patrick's daughter is likewise flimsy and uninteresting.  She's vulnerable and cares about her father.  Sort of.

Aside from this, motivations are slight.  Muldoon doesn't want to shoot zombies, to the point of fighting to the death to protect them, but then he's quite gung ho about shooting them at the slightest provocation next time we see him.  He wants to co-exist with zombies, and makes this big deal out of teaching them to eat animals.  So what?  The army characters walk into what they believe is a trap because..  Basically...  They can't think of anything else to do.  Really?

The action sequences, as I said, are poor and there aren't many of them.  Rarely do we get a sense of urgency - shots consist of characters in a narrowly defined geographic areas standing around and shooting off camera.  The zombies fall over and die.  Occasionally, rather haphazardly, a zombie gets close and attacks someone out of no where.  Think of the zombies that somehow sneak up on people on the boat a couple times.  Where did they come from?  It's just an excuse for lazy "boo" scares.

Compare it to, say, the mall cleanup scene in Dawn, where we see characters running around, POV shots of shooting, palpable danger with low shots of  zombies closing in on the camera, grappling, and so on.  Or any of the action scenes in Land, which were also much better constructed.

The central feud comes across as silly.  I guess all feuds like that are, but we basically are just thrust into a family feud, and then Patrick gets booted off and isn't really involved with the feuding family again until the finale.  

Janet reaching out to her sister comes across as completely ridiculous, given that Janet has previously survived for weeks/months next to many undead on the island.  There's only so much character stupidity I can take, and this film goes over that line.  Likewise with a bunch of zombies all in a barn, not really restrained in any way at all.  I mean, talk about stupid.  And this from animal farmers, who are experienced in keeping animals locked up.

Oh yeah, and the horse scenes?  They just look ridiculous.  The movie also treats this scene almost reverently, as if this were some major reveal.  So zombies will eat animals as well.  So what?


**END SPOILERS**

I might add I did enjoy some aspects of the film.  There were a few good kills, bits of dialog and character interaction I liked, and I quite enjoyed the character of Patrick.  But, I still feel I'm being fairly generous with giving the film a 4/10.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2010, 04:13:05 PM by Jim H » Logged
The Burgomaster
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« Reply #11 on: September 14, 2010, 03:49:30 PM »

I bought the DVD and watched it over the weekend.  It was okay at best . . . I think Romero has said all he has to say about zombies.  I thought the CGI was out of place for a Romero film.  It made me long for the days when Tom Savini was on the set with foam latex appliances and fake blood.  I think I'll go home and watch DAWN OF THE DEAD and MARTIN.  **sigh**
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« Reply #12 on: September 14, 2010, 06:44:15 PM »

I was very pleasantly surprised with the film.  I really went into it with low expectations after Diary left me unimpressed.  I have to say that I had a lot of fun with Survival.  Yeah, it wasn't great.  Yeah, the CGI was awful in some spots.  Otherwise, it felt like a Romero film.  The zombies are still brutal and the real monsters are the humans, as always.  Its certainly the best of his post-Day Of The Dead zombie films. 
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« Reply #13 on: September 15, 2010, 06:52:32 AM »

I guess I'm in the minority, but I thought DIARY OF THE DEAD was a totally superior film to this one.
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« Reply #14 on: September 15, 2010, 08:07:23 AM »

You're not alone, I also find it much better than this one.
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