"Dead and Breakfast"
The zombie movie, ladies
and gentlemen. There have been HORDES of them coming out lately--everything
from the truly lousy ones like "The Wickeds" to the slam-bang
action ones like "Dead Meat". George Romero actually came
back to the theatres to give us "Land of the Dead," with
mixed results. And the newest horror genre, the zombie comedy, was
Much to the delight of horror fans everywhere.
It kicked off with "Shaun
of the Dead," and was quickly followed up with movies like
"Snow Day, Bloody Snow Day," "Hide and Creep,"
and now, "Dead and Breakfast."
They bear a lot of the
same elements. Romero physics rule the day--destroy the brain and
you destroy the body. Lots of siegeworks are laid--buildings are
boarded up and barricaded as a way to defend against the undead
And as if that weren't
enough, they pack in the jokes. Tons of jokes. All manner of funny
bits, from slapstick to cerebral. If you don't laugh at least once
during the proceedings, check your pulse--you just may be a zombie
So what we have here
is a road trip gone wrong, and the besieged bed and breakfast the
six friends that went on the road trip find themselves in, resting
for the evening. Now, naturally, if you're on a road trip with friends
in a horror movie, something is going to go catastrophically wrong.
And if that something goes wrong in the state of Texas, you know
it'll go very wrong in a very big way.
Naturally, it does. The
bed and breakfast is besieged by a legion of the walking dead. Which
is pretty much why they called it "Dead and Breakfast."
The opening menu is surprisingly
clever. Watch that swirling background (shades of Hitchcock!) and
tell me you're not even vaguely impressed.
And I positively love
the first couple of minutes' comic book style opening credit roll.
The rockabilly song going on in the background is the perfect compliment,
and I'm just very impressed.
The country song at the
five minute forty second mark is too funny for words. I mean it,
folks...this is FUNNY. Funny is a great term to describe "Dead
and Breakfast"--adding Diedrich Bader to the cast was an excellent
idea for the comedy, and the creepy quotient gets ramped up handily
thanks to David Carradine.
But it gets better! Sixteen
minutes and forty eight seconds features one of the best jokes in
the entire movie--the "Find The Corpse" sequence. The
morbid hilarity is underscored by the soundtrack, and for being
so horribly messy, it's just really, really funny.
You know what? If I tried
to chronicle every single laugh-out-loud funny moment in "Dead
and Breakfast," I'd be here for days describing this to you.
You'd be sitting here reading a small novel about all the comedy.
Suffice it to say there are literally tons of comedic gems sitting
in "Dead and Breakfast," and that's long before the zombies
even show up.
And when the zombies
first start to crop up, the comedy takes a back seat. Oh, it's still
there, but it's subdued in favor of a whole bunch of really vicious
action scenes and plenty of gore.
Forty eight minutes fifty
five seconds proves that "Dead and Breakfast" was really
paying attention during "Night of the Living Dead" as
they take alarmingly similar measures to board up the bed and breakfast.
The homemade shotguns are just incredibly brilliant pieces of improvised
And the song at one hour
and fifty five seconds...oh man. The comedy is back with a vengeance
as the zombies mount a DANCE NUMBER.
The ending is stuffed to the gills with action sequences, the occasional
joke, and a few nifty surprises. Including a recapping music video
during the final credit roll.
The special features
include commentary tracks, deleted and extended scenes, a blooper
reel (which is just a hoot in a movie like this), additional music,
a poster and still gallery, plus trailers for "Dead and Breakfast",
"Man With The Screaming Brain", "All Souls Day",
and "It Waits".
All in all, "Dead
and Breakfast" is a hoot. Though there will be obvious comparisons
between it and "Shaun of the Dead", these comparisons
are cosmetic at best. "Dead and Breakfast" is a laugh
riot with lots of action and plenty of gore to be had. If you're
not laughing, folks, check your pulse.
GRADE: 4 stars ****
Dead and Breakfast
Portia De Rossi