THE BLIND DEAD? OK, now I have to buy it. And gore? Oh, sure... there is some gore! What isn't to like? Well, I found ZOMBIE PIRATES to be an entertaining enough micro-budget film that looks sharp and contains a few nifty tributes to the undead Templar titans as well as a few good performances from the leads, though it has so much padding that I think long time trash cinema fanatics will feel like the original GHOST GALLEON plays as fast-paced as a fight from ONG BAK comparatively. While things meander a bit, and I feel like I could now close up a tattoo parlor, right down to changing the paper towels, I really liked it overall! So, recap time...
Linda (Sarah French/Scarlet Salem) is obviously one tough cookie. We meet her as she heads home with a bullet in her shoulder and a grimace on her face. Why? Well, it turns out she has robbed and killed a finder of artifacts (oh oh) and taken not only money, but some other things of mystical import. Enter the ominous, mustachioed Grant (J.C. Pennylegion), who takes a lot of time explaining that she has come into contact with a Necronomicon-esque book that contains the method to feeding flesh to undead pirates in return for silver and other treasures. AS LONG AS YOU DO IT RIGHT! Well, of course...
Linda gets forced into being said skin salesman or footage of her robbery will be sent to the police. She jumps right in, killing dudes left and right with a little seduction or even a sneaky kill a la the opening of HOUSE BY THE CEMETERY... and in comes the mossy maven of malevolence... CAPTAIN LASSARD (Eric Spudic). He looks cool as hell, though the HD video doesn't do the costume many favors in some ways. This all continues until a bothersome officer of the law, Detective Knofke (Denman Powers) makes the scene and seems to have a fun obsession with using STAYING FOR COFFEE as a strong arm tactic. Make this guy a cup, even after he quits, because he has DNA evidence to hoodwink you out of, ladies. Pretty slick...
|The Zombie Pirates have arrived!|
While it runs too long with many repetitive scenes as Linda drags her white-bagged victims out to sea, or folds and unfolds a chair in her bathing suit, there is a lot to like for the low budget fan. The monster suits are really nice and I was especially impressed by ZOMBIE PARROT as well as a tiny ship shot almost exactly like the Ghost Galleon that Amando de Ossorio forged for The Blind Dead. I think the tiny budget and extremely high quality video camera dents the atmosphere that they were going for when Lassard shows up at the door, but the boat sacrifices and nomnomming are very well done. It's hard to hang a movie on just those sequences however.
|A Ghost Galleon by any other name.|
Most notable for me is the score is a perfect example of keeping a film flowing even in the dead spots of running time filler. An electronic score that hums beneath the entire film, it's got enough creep to keep my attention even when it starts to wander. Director Steve Sessions knows how to shoot a zombie attack AND score it at the same time. I'm impressed!
Overall, it would take a seasoned micro-budget fan to really love ZOMBIE PIRATES, but it's a serviceable slab of schlock for Blind Dead fanatics to take a look at.
|Zombie Pirate nomnoming on a victim.|
While I can't comment on the DVD release of ZOMBIE PIRATES, I did notice that the Retromedia disc contains HORROR OF THE ZOMBIES/GHOST GALLEON as an extra. Now that is a great flick and will certainly help anyone befuddled by the main feature as to what the tribute mentioned on the box was all about.
Definitely a decent sign of things to come, the Retromedia empire is about to enjoy some digital dominance I hope!
Zombie Parrot says... OUTTA HERE. SQUAAAAAK!!! – David Zuzelo