On Sept. 2, 2011 Zombie Diaries 2 (aka World of the Dead: The Zombie Diaries, aka World of the Dead: The Zombie Diaries 2, aka Zombie Diaries 2: World of the Dead) was released as a double feature with Hellraiser: Revelations for a limited theatrical run. Both films are distributed by Dimension Extreme, and both run somewhat short, so it was a savvy marketing decision to offer the two together as a double feature.
Unfortunately, Hellraiser: Revelations turned out to be a much better film, and Zombie Diaries 2 is nearly unwatchable. Mind you, the ninth Hellraiser installment was shot on a two-week shooting schedule, reportedly only cost $300,000 and clocks in at a mere 75 minutes, and it is by far the better of the two films. At least 15 people showed up for Hellraiser: Revelations, but I was the only one left willing to sit through all of Zombie Diaries 2.
Zombie Diaries 2 is simply a very boring and lazy zombie movie with little to redeem itself. It consists of “found footage” (a la The Blair Witch Project) and chronicles a unit of the United Kingdom’s Territorial Army as they try to reach the coast to catch a ferry to Rotterdam, one of the last opportunities for survivors to reach safety. The English countryside is overrun with zombies, and the soldiers must of course shoot them all in the head. There are also pockets of anti-military rebels who are intent on raping and torturing any other survivors they come across, including members of the military. Additionally, there are confusing flashbacks from when the zombie epidemic began, and it seems that the military was also guilty of a genocide of sorts, perhaps killing non-infected citizens and dumping them in mass graves.
To be sure, I’m not really sure what the movie was about. There’s just a lot of shaky camera-work, a lot of overacting, and a lot of poor make-up and effects. I did not care about any of the characters, the zombies were not scary, and about halfway through I started thinking about other more interesting things, such as what I was going to eat for dinner. Zombie Diaries 2 also seems to borrow liberally from 28 Days Later, in that our patriarchal society is the root of a lot of the world’s problems and that as soon as society breaks down men just want to rape everyone and cause mass chaos. 28 Days Later made the point effectively enough in a very ham-fisted manner, although I didn’t agree with its politics. But we hardly need another British movie with the same exact themes. George A. Romero’s Day of the Dead still remains the gold standard for portraying just how low humanity can sink in times of great strife, or a zombie outbreak.
I will give Zombie Diaries 2 two stars for now, although it’s possibly a 1-star movie. The only movie I have in mind for a 1-star rating at this time is Night of the Zombies, which I think is probably the worst movie of any genre I’ve ever seen. Either way, I don’t plan on watching Zombie Diaries 2 again, and I’m also not going to watch the first one in the series.
For other horror-related articles, please see:
- Chucky: The Killer DVD Collection (review)
- EMP Museum succeeds with Can’t Look Away: The Lure of Horror Film
- Final Destination 5 meets expectations
- George Romero’s ‘Survival of the Dead’ – dead on arrival
- Hellraiser: Revelations deserves another look
- Hostel: Part III a missed opportunity
- Leprechaun – Decades later and still not scary
- ‘Mega Piranha’ – so bad it’s good?
- Review of ‘Memory’ from 2006, starring Billy Zane
- Seattle’s ZomBcon raised the living dead
- Seattle’s 2012 MIFFF opens with Mon Ami
- Shocker by Wes Craven is shockingly bad
- Tobe Hooper ‘Mortuary’ – brain-dead zombies and black fungus
- Wes Craven ‘Cursed’ falls short of potential
- 2002 film ‘They’ explores night terrors
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