Saturday, August 11, 2012

Horror Film Review

Day X (2005):  I saw this a few years ago, before I started my blog.  Oh, I'll just watch it again, I thought.  Refresh my memory.  As far as marvelously stupid ideas go, that ranked up there with the Edsel and Cop Rock.  The things I do for my legions of followers...

First off, this isn't a zombie flick.  They want you to think it is.  Better marketing that way.  No...see, when people come into contact with an experimental airborne biological agent that was accidentally released, most of their brains turn to mush and they become insatiable, psychopathic cannibals.  No dying and coming back to life, no turning others into zombies with a bite, and no head shots to kill them.  Kind of makes you wonder what's the point.  Turns out, one in seven people are immune, and small group of these congregate at an abandoned manufacturing complex.  One guy knows what's going on (because he works for the CDC-like organization that let the bug get loose) and takes charge.  With him is a mysterious white-haired woman.  "She's the antidote," he says.  He was taking her to a secret underground bunker when everything went to hell.  Now, the plan is for the entire group to escape to that shelter.  Right.  And maybe monkeys will fly out of my butt.  As you'd expect in a film such as this, the characters drop like flies when they run for it.  Three make it to the bunker alive.  Little do they know what's waiting for them...  Uh, yeah.  More psycho cannibals.  Not exactly a shocker.

Nothing about Day X is new.  You've seen it before and seen it done much better (28 Days Later, Dawn of the Dead, etc.).  I think the worst part for me is actually writing the review.  It's bad enough so I can't heap praise and extol its cinematic value, yet it's not awful enough to rip it to shreds.  It's just...blah. 


Acting:  Ken Edwards plays in-charge dude Frank Chambers and frankly (sorry), isn't that good of an actor.  He's good in the action bits...when he's not talking.  No one else in the cast is in danger of winning an Oscar either, but all are marginally less stinky than Edwards.
Story:  As stale as week-old pumpernickel.
Direction:  The director's last name is Hack, which brings to mind many amusing jokes; however, the guy doesn't do a half-bad job given his source material.  This is one of the main reasons the film isn't "awful enough" to rip to shreds.
Production Values:  The purse strings were as tight as a Vegas hooker's tube top, but they still shot on film, not video, and the location helped with the realism (nothing beats shooting at a gigantic and empty industrial plant).  Lighting and sound are spotty but mostly OK.
Gore/FX:  There are the obligatory disembowelment shots but surprisingly little blood.  The groovy not zombie zombie make-up is another reason the film isn't "awful enough."
Scares:  None to speak of.
Ending:  One of those, "just when you think you're safe" deals.  (yawn)
Verdict:  Should you see Day X?  Well, I've watched it twice now.  You can live vicariously through me.  You're welcome.

Rating:  2 out of 5

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