John Lee Ames
Chris Ivan Cevic
Marian Tomas Griffin
Ashley Elizabeth Pierce
Trivia Jake Kennedy also worked on Fangoria: Blood Drive II, the collection of shorts from Fangoria magazine. Bruce Campbell is in one of them.
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Days of Darkness (2008)
21st Oct 08
Mimi and Steve wake up to find the world is full of zombies, so hide at this radio mast compound type of place with a zombie proof fence around it with a bunch of other survivors.
It's a classic tale. Steve and Mimi are a couple of the verge of making a commitment who head off to the hills for a romantic night roughing it in a tent. After getting drunk on champagne (in a tent, that Steve's a big spender) they head home the next day only to bump into a bunch of guys hanging around in their desolate mountain road (where you don't need a film permit) looking, well, kind of dead. Steve gets out to ask the obviously supposed to be zombie guys to get out of the way and they attack him, one taking a huge chunk out of his arm to the dismay of any viewer who knows 'the rules'. Then Simon turns up, beats a couple of zombies senseless and tells Steve and Mimi to follow him to a weird building that's kind of like a radio mast silo type thing with a big zombie proof fence around it.
All that happens in like the first 5 minutes of the film, so if you're the kind of person that makes a drink while the credits are still rolling then forget it, otherwise you'll miss Steve and Mimi's intro and you'll wonder what the hell all these weird people are doing at the compound. Where is everyone else? The rest of humanity? Police? Army? Anyone? To say that society collapsed overnight is not an exaggeration with Days of Darkness, but that's what you get if your budget consists of 3 locations, namely the campsite, the road with the zombies and the radio tower compound place, and even then the first two are probably just a few bushes behind the last.
Anyway, at the compound Steve and Mimi meet a bunch of standard holocaust survivors. We have Slasher, the car sales man who was famous for slashing prices, Kylie the over opinionated career whore (or porn star, I can't recall which actually, probably both) with daughter in tow, Simon the gay guy, Trent the total religious nutter who quotes the bible in a very clichéd way, DJ the archetypal token muscley black guy, Chad the redneck (he's the only one with a gun, and knows it) and an ex-army military chick whose name I can't remember. Oh hang on, I’ve just imdb’d it, her name was Lin, for those of you that are interested.
From here on in the script writes itself. You know everyone's going to hate Chad, you know someone's going to try and make a break for it and accidentally let the zombies in, and you know Trent's going to crack at some point and jeopardize everyone's safety. You know the tradition of token black guy buying it is going to be upheld, you know the ex-army chick's going to say things like "Listen up, soldier!", etc, etc. In fact, the only surprise in this movie is that Steve's arm bite from the beginning of the film isn't actually infected at all, and there's an altogether different reason for the zombie outbreak. Apart from that though it's cliché city. Steve sums it all up pretty well in one poorly exclaimed outburst in the middle of the film. He goes "We have no food or water, my girlfriend is pregnant with another man's baby, we've got three shotgun shells left and the world is filled with people being controlled by things in their head, which has something to do with the comet last night. What else could go wrong?" Exactly.
Without any decent sets, a bad score and ropey actors reading lines off a dodgy script, there's not much to recommend here. There are moments of reasonable gore - the alien baby stuff being a real bad comedy CGI highlight - but they don't lift this title out of the pool labeled turgid. If this had come out 25 years ago it'd be a different story, I'm sure we'd all be hailing it as a lost classic that had just aged badly. But it's not; it was made last year and it really should know better. And that's that.
Versions Region 2 version from Revolver Media is pretty good.
31st Mar 05 HGL has his characters simply play with human organs / intestines / eyes in sockets close-up needlessly and for longer than is necessary, if indeed it was necessary at all, which it isn't. Like close-up...