Saturday, January 25, 2014

Movie Review: A Little Bit Zombie (2012)

Ah, the zom-com. Seems to be more of them than you can shake a stick at these days, because well, zombies are cool. And people have been proving for years that zombies can also be awesomely funny which is what A Little Bit Zombie manages to do brilliantly.

Six days before their wedding, Steve and Tina take their matron of honor and best man to their family's cabin in the woods for a little R and R in preparation for the big day. Steve is nervous about the situation considering Tina's obsessiveness about the wedding, and the fact that she doesn't get along with his sister Sarah, the matron of honor. And all that is put to the test when Steve is bitten by a mosquito carrying a zombie virus. Somewhat resistant to the infection, Steve is still mostly human, but he can't feel pain and has an insatiable need for brains. Meanwhile, two zombie hunters find out about Steve's unique condition and while one wants to cure him, the other wants to see him dead.

What I liked the most about A Little Bit Zombie was that it found its own way, and never seemed like it was trying too much, if at all, to be like Shaun of the Dead or any other zom-com. There's a small Evil Dead homage in one scene, but for the most part this movie found its own plot line, its own gags, and its own sense of humor that I've never seen before. Their take on the zombie story is somewhat different in that our main character Steve only becomes a little bit zombie and doesn't really want to hurt anyone but finds out that he must feed on brains - fresh human brains - or he will deteriorate physically.

The acting is really what sells this ridiculous story, and at the risk of over-exaggerating, everybody was dynamo. My favorite characters were Max and Penny, the zombie hunter and scientist who drive around in an old camper and refer to a glowing orb to let them know when a zombie is around. Underused actor Stephen McHattie and relative unknown Emilie Ullerup play absolutely beautifully off of each other with wonderful comedic timing and physicality. McHattie loves the zombie killing and fuels up for the fight by chowing down on some "Tactical Bacon" - hilarious.  Ullerup is kind of a bumbling brainy type who tries to keep Max in line, but she's equally hilarious in her own way. The incredible campy-ness of the movie is given real credibility by the acting of McHattie and Ullerup, and by the rest of the actors as well. The characters of Craig and Tina are sometimes exaggerated in their reactions and dialogue but it's all part of the tone and feeling of the movie. They're all good enough that it never gets too cheesy, and there's also never any lulls in the established tone.

Even though this is a zombie movie, there is hardly any gore to talk about. And surprisingly, I didn't mind it one bit. Max gets things started off right at the beginning with a funny scene of him and Penelope taking care of some zombies at a sideshow carnival. After that, it's not until the end that you see more gore, but it's not zombie related. The stuff that is zombie related in the movie has more to do with the comedy element and they came up with some really good ideas here. There are some wonderful scenes where the group scours a local meat shop to by some brains for Steve; a scene where Steve goes off into the wilderness to catch him some animal brains - and fails; and a great part where the girls Tina and Sarah get all hooker-ed out to go to a bar and find a "bad person" that Steve could kill and eat his brains. One of my favorite things was how Steve would would drool every time somebody said the word "brains" - and not just a little dribble from the corner of his mouth, either, a full-on half a cup of spit would spew out. I really appreciated the ingenuity from the filmmakers to go a little outside the box from what other zombie movies do and take a different route.

The ending is a bit of a surprise and not where I expected it to go at all but it was still a good end to a great zombie movie. I think horror fans and zombie fans will be able to enjoy and also appreciate A Little Bit Zombie, even if it doesn't have your typical zombies actually in it. The movie is hilarious and fresh and I think it really brings something great to the zombie genre.


  1. It's sooo, sooo sad that this movie ended up sooo unbelievably overlooked because it's definitely one of the funniest rom-zom-coms since Shaun. I laughed my ass off completely :)

    1. Ah, so true! I never even heard anything about it, just found it myself on Netflix and thought it could be interesting. Let's spread the word!

  2. i also watch the film. It was simple yet so entertaining. by the way here's my review too