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American Zombie [Import]

2.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Actors: Austin Basis, Jane Edith Wilson, Al Vicente, Suzy Nakamura, John Solomon
  • Directors: Grace Lee
  • Writers: Grace Lee, Rebecca Sonnenshine
  • Producers: Catherine Park, Eunkyung 'Jude' Jung, Hoon-tak Jung, In-Ah Lee, Lu Cien Hioe
  • Format: Color, DVD-Video, NTSC, Import
  • Language: English
  • Region: All RegionsAll Regions
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: Cinema Libre
  • Release Date: July 8 2008
  • Run Time: 91 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • ASIN: B001A5070M
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Product Description

American Zombie

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By The Movie Guy HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWER on Dec 30 2015
Format: DVD
This is a mockumentary on the zombie community. In many ways it is a parody on the gay community. Unfortunately in order to capture the feel of a real documentary, the movie is very boring.

The low budget made for very few special effects or zombie make-up. The zombies they follow live boring if not pathetic lives. The real action in the movie starts at a festival called "live dead" which reminded me of a Grateful Dead parking lot. At this point the movie is well past the half way point. Feel free to tell people the surprise ending.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2.9 out of 5 stars 18 reviews
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The most BORING "zombie" movie on the face of the planet. June 19 2010
By Michael Gmirkin - Published on
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This movie was god-awfully boring and pointless. Where's the gut-munching, society-ending horror that's supposed to accompany zombie movies? If not that, where's the hilarious spoofing parody to keep you in stitches?

This is obviously supposed to be some kind of satire and/or social commentary as well as being a zombie movie. But, honestly, it fails on all fronts.

It's not a horror movie. There's effectively very little gore. What there is tends to be un-frightening and off-camera. If it's a satire, it not a very funny one. I never laughed once during the movie. So, it's certainly not a parody or spoof (Well, I suppose one could call it a parody, just not a funny one). It also seems to be a social commentary piece, but frankly it's social commentary that nobody seems to care about. Zombie rights? Mistreatment of zombies?

I really wanted to like this movie. But honestly, it bored me. I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop, for it to all lead up to some real horror or some real laughs. It delivered absolutely nothing.

As to the characters themselves, humans and zombies, frankly there's nothing there. I certainly never invested any emotion into the characters. Couldn't really identify with them, and couldn't care less about what happened to any of them. The human were a bunch of whiny idiots. The zombies were equally whiny idiots. The characters never accomplish anything in the movie. There's no hero or villain, really. Even the zombie makeup effects weren't very good. Mostly, the "zombies" were portrayed as regular people nd had little by the way of "zombie" make-up, beyond some minor "decaying skin" or a tiny "death wound". Certainly nothing really zombie-ish. There were no shamblers, or hyper-zombies. No zombies with broken legs, or limbs dangling off, or really any gore of any kind.

As far as I'm concerned, this film is a failure on just about every level and I fail to see the point or relevance. It's not scary, funny or in any way poignant. Quite the waste of "possibility." I have no idea who this movie was made for (in terms of audience) or who would actually find it interesting...

If you want a good "zombie" flick, look elsewhere. Zombieland, Dawn of the Dead, Fido and Shaun of the Dead all come highly recommended...
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars American Zombie DOES work! Aug. 7 2008
By Joyce Picker - Published on
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I do think it works as a funny mockumentary. I laughed out loud many times, more than I can say for many recent comedies. I thought it was a fresh idea and I liked the characters. The final scenes actually did have "horror" in it, as well.
0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Terrible zombie flick cheap Jan. 30 2010
By bbrockRailFan - Published on
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I cant believe they even made this ridiculous movie. It looks like they made it with a home camera. The acting is amateurish and the story is just plain silly. I doubt this movie sells too much.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A film with a very narrow audience March 26 2009
By S. Horwatt - Published on
Format: DVD
I think the number of people that fall into the target audience for this film is really, really small.

First off, let me say that it is a very well made film, a very slick production that captures the feel of a documentary exceptionally well (as I suppose it should, since Grace Lee apparently makes documentaries). I also think the concept of the film is very clever (that zombies live among us, but they're just another misunderstood and downtrodden subclass...or are they?).

Having said that, it's kind of an odd mix of styles and I'm not sure who will ultimately enjoy the film. I'm not sure how many people who are attracted to the zombie film genre will also be interested in a film which is at its heart a media and identity politics satire. And I'm not sure how many people looking for a media satire will be interested in the zombie subject matter.

I see there is a bit of a debate raging as to what this film actually is: mockumentary, faux documentary, horror movie, etc. I don't really know what the difference between a mockumentary and a faux documentary is. If the difference is that mockumentaries are comedies and faux documentaries are not necessarily comedies, I have to say I think this is intended to be primarily a comedy (or at least, as I said, satire...and my understanding of satire is that it's generally intended to be funny). True, it's a relatively dark and low key comedy, but still a comedy.

Part of the film's problem may be how it is promoted (to the limited extent that it has been promoted); the Netflix capsule review of American Zombie opens: "Part mockumentary, part unabashed gore-fest..."

Well, we can argue about whether or not it's a mockumentary, and it's a matter of personal experience whether it's scary or not, but I don't think anyone could honestly describe this film as "part unabashed gore-fest." So to the extent that that tag would draw the core audience for more typical zombie movies, I think those people will be disappointed.

On the whole, I found it worth watching for its novelty, and I think the film makers hit exactly what they were trying to hit (I'm just not sure how many people are out there waiting for a film to hit that).

My favorite moment: John keeps insisting that the film explore whether or not zombies are eating human flesh. Grace, in irritation, lashes out with the question: "Why do you insist on essentializing zombies to their biological functions?"

If you don't think that's funny, don't get this movie.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Marginalized Undead Dec 16 2009
By Bryan Byrd - Published on
Format: DVD
If there isn't one already, then soon there will probably be a pop culture thesis or dissertation to explain or at least examine the explosion of Zombie films in the last decade. The best of these movies are often thinly veiled commentary on our society - but our insatiable appetite for them is a reflection on ourselves also. It would be interesting to know what compels society to produce and support Zombie flicks (and books, and comics, and video games, etc, etc.). I suspect it isn't an entirely healthy attraction.

Regardless, since the industry is still churning them out, the market must be unsaturated, though filmmakers are stretching the genre's boundaries to the breaking point. Hence 'American Zombie', an addition to the fold done in the 'mockumentary' style (which is itself beginning to wear thin). Here we have a group of filmmakers who are prepared to document the 'lives' of Los Angeles' undead community. Within the framework of the film, this community is a disenfranchised, exploited minority, although they can and do mix with the humans around them. It's quickly apparent that one of the people involved in making the film is expressly interested in exposing zombie habits that make this arrangement untenable, and one of the more dry elements of the film is that the others act as if he's showing bad form.

The filmmakers follow four 'revenants'; a slacker teen/early twenties convenience store clerk, an activist for zombie awareness and civil rights, a thirtysomething organic food distributor in denial about her undead status, and a mousy artist full of suppressed anger. The crew follows these four about in typical documentary style, shooting raw footage and cutting away to interviews to fill in the gaps that explain this alternate reality. Meanwhile, the co-directors argue between themselves about the direction filming should take. The footage culminates in the film crew receiving permission to attend 'Live Dead', a undead festival where humans are strictly forbidden. Things start to go poorly for the crew at this point, and in the wrap-up footage, we learn once again why zombies don't make good friends.

The problem with 'American Zombie', as I see it, is that to do a 'mockumentary', you must have a target to mock. This film could have been a piercing unveiling of the pretensions in mockumentary filmmaking itself. Or it could have aimed at fans of the zombie genre in general. Instead, it takes pot shots at whatever is handy - slackers, repressed individuals, loneliness, race relations and civil rights activists, music and arts festivals - and fails to focus on anything specific. As a commentary on modern life, its conclusions are banal; as comedy it's too obvious, and as horror, except for one genuine creepy moment that I won't go into for sake of spoilers, it doesn't even make an attempt. On the plus side, the production value is pretty good - this film probably didn't cost a lot to make, but they've disguised that well and turned in a professional effort. The actors, all unknowns to me, do an excellent job, and though supposedly a comedy, the film stays seriously dedicated, never descending into slapstick or cheap gags.

None of that outweighs the drag of unfocused satire. All in all, an average film, probably best reserved for the ardent zombie junkie, and not for the common horror fan.