Hahahaha!! Even though I’ve decided to make this Halloween a “ghost themed” review month, our good friends the zombies absolutely refuse to let me leave them out of the fun entirely, and so this time out we take a peek at the recent Dutch Horror Comedy DVD release featuring our favorite flesh munching fiends, 2012’s “Zombibi” aka “Kill Zombie”.
Our synopsis goes like this: “When the Russian Mir Space Station crash lands on the city of Amsterdam, a deadly infection spreads, turning the inhabitants into psychopathic flesh eating zombies!
After a fight at a pool party ends with a night in jail, two brothers and two crazy criminals along with one gutsy female police officer emerge to discover their city ravaged by a zombie outbreak. When one of them receives a cry for help from a sole survivor they are all forced to embark on a reluctant rescue mission, pitting their wits, and risking their lives against these flesh devouring mutant killers!”
Haven’t really seen a lot of Dutch film… let alone any Dutch Zombie films… so this one was a pleasant surprise when it popped up in the UK on Region 2 DVD. I’d been trying to locate the original Dutch DVD to no avail, and British releases of European film tend to… err… ummm… well… not ordinarily measure up, quality wise. Lots of time they are dubbed into English, the original audio track discarded completely… or worse, they get hard-subbed. Who they heck would do that? Especially when selectable subtitles are so darn easy to add to a DVD. Ah, well… I just knew I wasn’t going to find this one any other way, so finally this wee Catgirl bit the bullet and plunked down her cash for a copy. Was it worth my efforts? Only one way for you gentle Visitors to know….. 😉
Well… surprise, surprise… this release by Kaleidoscope Home Entertainment was actually a winner, tech-wise. It appears to be a widescreen presentation of the film, with it’s Dutch audio language track and separate selectable English subs, much to my relief. Yay!!! 🙂
Our story? Ahhhhh…. well here we break no real new ground, zombie-wise, as it’s basically the good old “Zombie Apocalypse” in Amsterdam with our heroes fighting to survive the mayhem with all the usual gory hi-jinx much as one might expect. So… who are our heroes? Ahhhhh… that would be the unlikely group of guys consisting of a couple of Moroccan immigrant brothers, Aziz (played by Yahya Gaier) and Mo (played by Mimoun Ouled Radi) and the two Senegalese “would-be gangstas”, Nolan (played by Uriah Arnhem) and Jeffrey (played by Sergio Hasselbaink). One stupid macho face-off between them at a pool party and all the guys are soon “guests” of the Dutch police, locked up for disorderly conduct under the watchful supervision of sexy, tough, no-nonsense cop Kim (played by Gigi Ravelli). One crashed Russian space station later and all heck breaks loose…. and that’s definitely when the fun starts. 😉
Much of our lil’ film spins on the interactions of these characters, and unless you understand the peculiarities of Dutch immigration and the recent problems of cultural integration of the various ethnic and cultural groups that make up the melting pot of modern Europe, you’ll probably miss some of the jokes. The interaction between Aziz and Mo is a bit easier to get….. Aziz, the button down “salaryman” just trying to make good while trying to cope with his con-artist brother Mo’s endless ability to get himself in trouble, always dragging Aziz down with him. It’s Aziz who ends up missing out on his one big chance to finally score with Tess…. his office’s resident siren… all thanks to him being fired by his tyrant of a boss over Mo’s endless phone calls to him at work. Yep… wanna tick off your brother? Come between him and possible sex…. that’ll do it.
There’s a definite “love/ hate” edge to the brothers relationship, but all that goes to the backseat once the proverbial poop hits the fan and that big honking ol’ space station drops out of orbit… crashing ever so conveniently on top off the very same office building where Aziz so recently worked and where sexy Tess finds herself trapped. Naturally, she phones our hero begging him to save her. Sexy unattainable Tess…. yep, poor Aziz is just sooooo going to have to risk it all to ride to the rescue, dragging the reluctant Mo and his new companions along for the mission.
All the sorts of goofy Zombie action we’ve all come to expect ensues of course. Nothing new or novel there, but it’s all done with a wry style and pacing that make this one a pleasant lil’ evening’s diversion if Zombie comedy films are your thing. There’s the silly “Let’s rob a bank” idea…. the old rivalry between our Moroccan brothers and their Senegalese companions to watch… and naturally, even though Aziz is dead set on rescuing Tess our “damsel in distress”, you just know he and sexy Kim are slowly going to fall for each other by our film’s end.
None of this is at all surprising, but sprinkled throughout our story are some truly whacked out moments. Like gangsta boy Nolan getting his fingers stuck in a bowling ball forcing him to battle the hordes of the “living impaired” with it stuck on his hand. Perhaps the best bit in the entire film being his ludicrous demise once he gets bit by the zombies. Of course his best bud Jeff isn’t going to let his pal turn into one of the flesh hungry monsters…. but what’s a best friend to do about it? Why how about “euthanizing” your friend by personally beating his brains out? Great idea…. if you can actually manage it. Instead we get a truly funny “point-of-view” look at this notion from Nolan’s viewpoint as Jeff pounds away on his face with Mo’s assistance…. over and over… with absolutely everything at hand including… you guessed it… a kitchen sink. To hilariously no effect. Well… other than the gory spray of silly amounts of blood and probably his buddy’s serious agony throughout the whole time. It’s funny….. and simultaneously gruesome all at the same time.
So….. after all this will our goofy heroes still manage to find the lovely Tess? Will they manage it before she turns “zombie”? Will they all make it out of Amsterdam alive? All this and more gets wrapped up by movie’s end… along with the arrival of Russia’s answer to Rambo to deal with our contaminated Space Station in a spectacularly explosive fashion for our climax.
I have to say, even though this one is no “Shaun of the Dead”… it is a well made and entertaining film. It even had my sweetie Carolyn in stitches, giggling like there was no tomorrow at moments that veered from serious straight to video-game inspired cut scenes right out of “Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World”. Given that, I feel pretty good giving this one 3 hearty “Meows” out of 5. It’s not the greatest Zombie film ever made, but it doesn’t miss any of the great genre notions you both expect and want in a Zombie film… and that alone is worth something in this girl’s book.
The UK Region 2 DVD…. released under the title “Kill Zombie!!”… is well produced too, being widescreen and uncut from the Dutch release in PAL format with perfect selectable English subtitling. It’s available from UK stock lists for right around 15$ US, perfect for a simple night of silly Zombie laughs. This wee Catgirl wishes she’d been able to find the original Dutch release… but if it eludes you as well, this one is certainly a nice way to catch a look for yourself.
Last but definitely not least, let’s all take a peek at the Trailer for all the Zombie action… shall we?