Eaters: Rise Of The Dead

What if a zombie apocalypse, which also vaguely involves the loss of man’s ability to reproduce somehow, brought chaos and destruction to humanity, sending civilization as we know it into a state of anarchy that saw your loved ones eaten before your eyes, the very foundations that shape your life; your family and friends ripped apart and devoured by flesh hungry undead.

Wouldn’t you naturally seek out a safe haven, defending it with every inch your being? And assemble an army of people who blatantly hate you and obviously fancy your wife trusted comrades in arms, equipped with only with 1980’s special effects and a serum of Infertil (the fertility drug from the marketing team who bought you Unobtanium).

Wouldn’t you include a mentally unstable “scientist” in your posse and trust him to perform non specific alien science experiments on your family in the hope of finding a cure? If he asked you, wouldn’t you risk your life on a whim to go out into the apocalyptic wasteland on a mission to find survivors for a purpose never really explained? And would he, left to his own devices, take his experiments to their natural conclusion? Any modern scientific mind is after all surely well versed with the formula to subvert the end of the world- Infertility + zombie apocalypse = mating with zombies. And mating in turn = senseless torture and rape.

Eaters: Rise Of The Dead answers all these questions (and countless others) you never wanted answered about the human experience. In particular, does Italian grammar revolve around the word fuck, or is something being lost in translation here? And are incessant gay jokes any funnier with subtitles? Trying to be something like Deadwood and The Wire in the way it addresses how we think about language (except without a shred of experimentation or a wink to self awareness) EROTD just ends up seeming gratuitous. Most disappointing is the senseless scripting, direction and illogical plot development. The film conveys the sense that the bewildered actors are fighting a losing battle to stay in untenable character. Zombie apocalypse? Sure. Apparently still active Nazi threat? Ok I guess, but how is that relevant? A villain mastermind who attempts to blow himself up despite curing the zombie epidemic just as the film is running out of steam? No, that makes no sense, no sense at all.

Ok it’s supposed to be bad, I get it, but Eaters lacks the charm of Italian cringe horrors, gross out Saw rip offs and endearing lo fi special effects. The long established traditions of the Italian B movie is shamelessly shopped and exploited by joint directors Luca Boni and Marco Ristori in their first collaboration here. An otherwise proud history of technicolour Hercules and Zombie vs Shark battle royales brought to it’s knees for the sake of half baked torture porn.

Sam Manu Gray

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