Dead Alive (1992) Review

Spoiler-free so you can read before you watch

Dead Alive (1992) Review

Horrorific content by adrian on August 24th, 2020 | Movie Review | Comedy, Campy, Gore, Zombie, Splatter, 80's Horror

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It's about a guy's mom who gets zombified by an evil rat monkey who then goes on to zombify the entire town who all go on an epic ravenous blood feast.

Dead Alive was directed by Peter Jackson (who also directed King KongThe Frighteners and Bad Taste) and stars Tim Balme, Diana Peñalver and Ian Watkin (from The Lost Tribe).

Some things won't stay down... even after they die.

What the hell did I just watch. Seriously.

Believe it or not, I went into this movie completely blind. Even though this movie has been around forever and has an iconic cover that I remember seeing around ever since I was a kid, I've never watched it before. Never even seen the trailer. Literally the only thing I knew about it was that it had a reputation for being one of the goriest horror movies of all time. The reputation is worthy.

This movie starts soft. It's a strangely whimsical and romantic story about a mama's boy and a Gypsy girl who form a relationship in quaint Wellington, New Zealand. It doesn't feel like a horror movie whatsoever. Like, in any way. At all.

Of course, before long the horror starts to bleed through and Dead Alive takes on a vibe similar to Evil Dead. And before you know it becomes more like a mind-blowingly gory Shaun of the Dead. It's like a more gross Green Inferno. I'm talking Videodrome gross.

So basically, a couple of guys sneak a killer rat monkey out of Sumatra and into a New Zealand zoo. The monkey bites a woman at the zoo, infecting her with some kind of nasty flesh dissolving zombie virus. And by flesh dissolving I mean this woman's ear slides off her head and lands in her soup. She then proceeds to eat her ear, pearl earring and all. She goes on to infect others who go on to infect others. Her son, the love interest of a young Gypsy, tasks himself with hiding the zombies and trying to make everything seem normal.

He fails spectacularly. 

How spectacularly you ask? Well, at one point, despite his best efforts, his house becomes jam packed with zombified bloodthirsty New Zealanders who need killing, and quick. He thinks up some hilariously creative ways to create mass carnage, the problem is these things don't die. If you chop off a hand the hand just crawls away. Sure, you've seen this happen before in movies like The Evil Dead. But have you seen freakin' entrails crawl away?! At a point some bastard's entrails are crawling around trying to kill. Entrails! There's also all the usual stuff like face ripping, rib cage removing and baby blending.

I can honestly say I expected all the talk of how gory this movie was to be exaggerated. I was dead wrong. This was for sure the goriest movie I've seen. It's a horror comedy so obviously not the most realistic or shocking gore, but the goriest for sure. And a blast to watch for sure.

Worth Watching?

This iconic 80's horror is a wonder to behold. If you haven't seen it, go see it, seriously. 

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