Isn’t it always fun to get a package in the mail? I like to get packages, it makes me feel like I’m someone special, even if I did order it for myself like a big boy. In Robert Scott‘s “The Video Dead” (1987), a man gets a special delivery that he’s not expecting. In the wooden crate, a TV. Too bad this TV only shows one movie… “Zombie Blood Nightmare” (which by the way, looks like an awesome zombie movie). Zombies pop out of the ground during this movie, and eventually the TV spawns some zombies – and through the magic of film, they all fit through the 19 inch opening on the TV to wreak havoc upon the unsuspecting owner of the house.
3 months later, Zoe and her brother Jeff move into the house and start to get it ready for their parents who are out in Saudi Arabia on business. Jeff finds the TV that spawns dead shit and decides to move it into his room because it’s so totally cool. Late one night when Jeff gets blue balls from a girl in the neighborhood, he decides to roll a jibber and watch a little bit of the tube.
a woman comes though the TV to seduce Jeff, and before he can get his jollies she goes back and teases him while a man comes up behind her and kills her. Jeff talks to the guy in the TV named “The garbage man” and gets filled in on the shit that’s gonna start coming out of his TV. Of course, Jeff is an idiot, and he doesn’t follow the garbage man’s instructions to lock the TV in the basement with a mirror in front of the screen, because he thought it was just all the MARI-JUWANNA he was smokin’ that made him see crazy stuff coming out of the TV, so he ruins it for everyone else in the neighborhood and unleashes a zombie horde.
Then there’s the guy from Texas, named Joshua Daniels, that seems to have all the answers. He goes through a big long speech about how they needed mirrors, because the dead hate to see their own reflection because they’re so ugly. Then he pretty much invalidates that by telling Jeff and Zoe that there are two ways to kill them, trap them in a room from which there’s no escape (it drives them crazy! CRAZY DEAD!) or to attack them like you would a living person, and then they think they’re like the living and they die! Voila, the mirrors don’t mean shit and they go out during the day to hunt some of “the video dead”. Also, they get docile if you don’t show fear.
Wow, the acting… It’s pretty goddamned bad. I can put up with bad acting, especially for a zombie movie, but it’s still pretty damned rotten. Of all the movies I’ve reviewed for this site, the acting in The Video Dead is probably the worst. I’ve reviewed Italian movies where the voices are dubbed and they’ve been better than this.
Another thing that needs to be up to snuff in a zombie film is the makeup. Yeah… again, this one misses the mark. The zombies look pretty bad. A little better than scabby faced zombies, but not much better than that. Another thing is that these zombies don’t hunger for flesh. You don’t see one single zombie bite somebody, they just kill for the fun of it. I don’t know if I’d consider that an improvement on the regular zombie motif, but I would like to see some undead dude get his munch on.
The gore is decently done, and there are some inventive ways that some people get killed. My favorite most ridiculous death is the lady that gets stuffed into a washing machine and put on the spin cycle.
On a positive note, you can’t go wrong with a zombie chasing people around with a chainsaw, or another one getting a iron through the top of it’s head, so it has that going for it. Oh, and the dad wears some an awesome pair of bell bottoms for 1987.
As with most of these movies, you need to watch them with some friends to really get the most enjoyment, but in this case, it’s a requirement. While it’s entertaining in a “so bad it’s kinda good” kind of way, unfortunately even zombies can’t save this one.
Check below the break for a trailer that actually makes The Video Dead look like a decent movie!