Also posted at http://www.revenantmagazine.com/)
(This review is for the original Plaga Zombie. You may be interested in the review of the sequel “Plaga Zombie: Mutant Zone“)
It’s a new year, so why not start the year with something unusual – a South American zombie film. Going to show that Zombie cinema has never really been geographically specific, the Argentinian Plaga Zombie is the forerunner to the more popular Plaga Zombie : Mutant Zone, a film I have yet to watch but judging by this effort I am particularly looking forward to doing so.
A pair of students are chilling out in their flat when a strange noise summons one of them up to the roof where he is promptly probed in the belly by a very rubbery looking Alien. This very sadly leads to his stomach exploding causing him to become one of the undead. At the same time it appears that there are further zombies cropping up around the neighbourhood and it is up to Bill the remaining flatmate, and his wrestler buddy John to take on the hoards of the undead with a little help from some syringes filled with zombie killing potion, and some kick-ass wrestling moves.
There have been numerous zombie movies that compare themselves to Braindead / Dead Alive, but this is the first one where that comparison is justified. Utilising the same style of filming and buckets of slimy goo, Plaga Zombie is very much the Braindead of Argentina. A bowl of minced zombie limbs is eaten by another zombie (a probable nod to Peter Jackson’s Bad Taste), and a human is mauled by no less than a lawnmower (yes, more nods to Peter Jackson), but despite these obvious references there are plenty of original touches here. A zombie with fake teeth swallows his dentures which are then swiftly removed from his own gut via a punch to the stomach. Multicoloured Zombies spew multicoloured vomit over – and into – their victims. Syringes of zombie repellent are thrown. Zombies phone out for Pizza. There is much to enjoy, but particular credit should go to the spectacular garden massacre that closes the film, where the nerdy scientist kid, the wrestler and the pizza delivery lad chop and mutilate numerous undead with glee.
All this lowbudget zombie action clocks in at just over 1 hour, but it is a wonderful hour. Ripping off Peter Jackson has never been so much fun.
Gore Score B+
Norks Score F
Originality Score C+
Overall Score B