It’s hard to get excited for zombie movies these days. At this point, we’ve all seen so many, and sadly, a lot of the time, the films turn out to be really bad. Fortunately for fans of the undead, there are still filmmakers out there that can breathe life into this over-saturated sub-genre. One of the latest to see a home video release is Harrison Smith’s Zombie Killers: Elephant’s Graveyard.
Zombie Killers tells the story of a small fracking community that is home to survivors of a zombie outbreak. The folks of Elwood are doing their best to survive in a time where all seems lost and everyone is convinced of an inevitable conclusion to the whole ordeal.
I hate to be that guy, but I just have to say it: Zombie Killers is very much like the AMC hit series, The Walking Dead, a soap opera drama about survivors in a world overrun by zombies. As a longtime fan of the show, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. What TWD has accomplished in five seasons, ZK has come awfully close in just under two hours; There is a tremendous amount of character development, a well thought out storyline, and some pretty badass looking zombies.
With a cast consisting of horror alum, Dee Wallace (The Howling, Cujo), Felissa Rose (Sleepaway Camp), and Billy Zane (Critters, Red Clover), along with a whole slew of performers from Harrison Smith’s previous films, the acting was really a mixed bag in Zombie Killers. For the most part, everyone did a great job, but some of the characters felt like a stretch. The young and flamboyant Michael Kean just wasn’t convincing as the one to lead the remaining survivors of Elwood… I just didn’t see it. On the other hand, some roles were a perfect fit. My favorite performance was, by far, Billy Zane as Seiler, the former soldier who now served as an instructor to the young crew of protectors. Seiler was a caring, but stern character who was also a realist and gave it to the crew straight. The no BS, “we’re going to die and that’s that” type of guy.
Zombie Killers isn’t my favorite living dead flick, but it is certainly a worthy entry in the sub-genre that is certainly not slowing down anytime soon. It is very evident that Smith and his entire team took great care in the making of this film and presented it to the best of their ability. I can surely respect that and for that alone think this film is worth checking out.
If you are a fan of The Walking Dead or any other well-developed zombie films, you should give Zombie Killers: Elephant’s Graveyard a try. You can pick up a copy on Blu-ray and DVD this Tuesday, February 3rd from Anchor Bay Entertainment. There are a number of behind-the-scenes extras, including a segment from the awesome guys over at Bloodbath and Beyond who are killing the video review scene over on YouTube.
I give this film 3 paintball pellets out of 5.