Walking into the screaming room to see a movie like ‘Dead and Breakfast’ I didn’t know what to expect. The line wasn’t very long, and the crowd wasn’t screaming in excitement, so I figured I was seeing something that has been flying under the radar for a while and a studio is looking for some notice for the film. To my absolute and utter amazement this movie way surpassed all of the ideas I had for the film.
To tell you the truth I through the lineup was for an old Canadian movie called ‘Blood and Dounuts.’ When it didn’t start playing, I wasn’t disappointed. This movie had your typical B movie shines: A group of young adults traveling down a dark road littered with road kill, and completely lost, and slowly getting on each others nerves. As the movie went on and the opening credits came to a close, the name David Carradine flashed up on screen, to which many people in the theatre replied with a hushed “It must be a different Carradine” but oddly no, Bill himself plays a part in this movie, as well as Dietrich Bader who plays Oswald on the Drew Carry Show and Jeremy Sisto who has played in 6 Feet Under among a plethora of other projects.
So with this incredible cast, (aside from one actress whos acting was slightly less than desirable- but hey, its a B movie, what do you expect) the story begins. They stop at a bed and Breakfast on their way to a wedding, which by the wee hours of the morning turns bloody and gruesome but in more of a comical way, Similar to ‘Evil Dead 2.’ There are so many sight gags, as well as well timed and beautifully written jokes that only a real genre lover would adore (Watch for the hand puppeted severed head; as far as jokes go, that was GENIUS!).
The story goes thusly: The group of people gets lost and ends up at this Bed and Breakfast, which is owned by the creepy Mr. Wise, who keeps a small box, which Buddhist priests use to keep control over a spirit who would otherwise wreak havoc among the world. It contains the spirit of his young son who died during childbirth, which is why he saved the spirit in the first place, hoping he could somehow make the spirit happy and keep it with him. Unfortunately, the box is opened by one of the group and he is taken over by the spirit who maliciously attacks and turns nearly the whole town into mindless zombies bent on destroying or recruiting everyone around. The whole film eventually leads to a standoff in the B&B that like all great movies turns into a splatterfest.
One aspect of the movie I did not expect in the least was the movie being a part musical. It worked in its own funny way, every few scenes interjected with a song to keep the viewer up to date on what was going on, and keep the lively and funny tone ongoing throughout the film. Zach Selwyn (Who sang and played the music) did one hell of a job going from a real basic country style to an all out freeform rap montage, which subsequently lead into a dance routine with zombies that the people in the movie watch dumbfounded and actually ask, “What the hell are they doing!”
One thing that made everyone feel pleasured by the film was the fact that they used so many interesting (And some stolen) ways to kill the zombie hordes. There were your typical Chainsaws, axes, bats, guns, and then there was things like drum symbols, a tube with a shotgun shell, and… Well, I don’t want to ruin it for anyone but this is one gem of a movie. And It could be the U.S.’s version of ‘Shaun of the Dead.’
So, in closing, if you liked any of the classics: Evil Dead, Army of Darkness, Braindead, you will fall in love with this movie and try and marry it. You will be laughing so hard, wiping tears from your eyes from the laughter, as well as holding back a wretch or two from the exquisitely done visual effects.
Personally I think this movie deserves one hell of a rating, I’d hazard a guess at a solid four out of five. Here’s hoping more movies follow in their footsteps.