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Thursday, 19 January 2012

3 Days Later: Jesus Christ, Zombie Lord (2008)

Director: Clay Robeson
Stars: Dave Dyson, Marcus Sams and Amber Price
This film was an official selection at the 3rd Phoenix Fear Film Fest in Tempe in 2010. Here's an index to my reviews of 2010 films.
Another film that really puts its essence into its title, 3 Days Later is a surprisingly spot on spoof of Jesus Christ Superstar, done with people who can really sing and mostly know how to keep a straight face when departing from the classic story of our Lord and Saviour by suggesting that after his three days in the tomb he rose as a zombie. The only surprise I felt was in realising that, in our modern zombie-soaked culture, nobody had done this before! It opens with the suggestion that it's a proof-of-concept for a feature length zombie rock opera, but if that's not a gimmick it seems to have got stuck there because its web site forwards to a YouTube channel which hasn't seen an update in almost three years. Whether they really ever wanted to expand it or not, they shouldn't. At seven minutes, it's a funny musical short that would serve as a welcome humour break to any festival set. At ninety, it would drag painfully. Even twenty would be a stretch.

Of course there's very little acting and next to no sets. It's made to appear that this preview is taken from a minimalist stage musical production with attention given to costumes and facial hair and a little choreography but not much more. Everything revolves around the songs and fortunately those are solid, especially in the brief snippets we're treated to. 'What's that smell? Tell me what's happening?' the chorus chants as they dance around the newly risen Lord of the Undead. 'I don't know how to kill him,' sings Mary Magdalene as Jesus munches on an leg. 'If you eat these folks I'll know you're no hoax,' suggests the gay 70s disco dancer. You get the picture. If you're thinking that it sounds really stupid then you shouldn't bother seeking it out at all, but if you're smiling at the idea of this, you're going to love it. The voices are capable and the musical direction is solid. It does what it aims to do with aplomb.

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