Monday, February 8, 2021

The Day of the Living Dead, Zombie Pandemic Film Noir Style

What would we have if George Romero directed "Double Indemnity"? Better yet, how about if Billy Wilder directed "Night of the Living Dead"? Would Marilyn Monroe have been cast in either? No worries, we have her in this one (courtesy of Sarah French)…you'll see.  Movies about insurance claims don't usually stimulate us except in the film noir setting. Throw in some femme fatales, sultry dames, a square jawed adjuster, and menacing heavies...oh yes...zombies...and we have 2020's "The Day of the Living Dead," directed by Thomas J. Churchill.

In 1957 we didn't know cigarettes could kill. In 2020 the death toll is in the hundreds of millions. Present day, zombie hordes are attacking and a guilt ridden dying man beckons his confessor to harp back to 1957. 50 years ago, Hollywood was pristine on the surface, but the seeds of sin and exploitation were sown. George (Ray Capuana) is hired by the sultry Ms. Daniels (Brooke Lewis Bellas). She oozes seduction and George can't say no. He'll be charged to investigate a Satanic tobacco company, Deadly by the devil (Churchill). He'll go missing leaving his nubile fiancé, Bethany (Natalie Victoria) to look for him. Uh oh, before going missing, George was onto something. 13 mysterious claims of employees beset by a mysterious (think zombie virus) illness. Was this an industrial accident...or were these 13 unfortunates a sacrifice to summon the apocalypse?

George tracks down these 13 and is usually too late. They have either turned and eaten their loved ones...or have been involved in a gory accident. He's hot onto something, but the devilish owner of Deadly Sins Tobacco is in full control. We'll plunge into zombie gore as if we're in a Romero zombie flick...we'll be treated to quick-witted film noir dialogue as only Billy Wilder cold give us...and the eeriness and surrealism of a David Lynch offering. Veronica Lake fans (which I am one) will enjoy Marisa Parks and her gown as the lounge singer. Back to the plot...George is getting too close and the Deadly Sins evil seems ready to engulf him.

Will George figure out that his investigation is really into Satan's attempt to unleash a bloody apocalypse? Is the fate of Marilyn Monroe going to be a vicious parallel to what happens to George and modern day Hollywood? Is the zombie apocalypse a fitting metaphor for the cigarette deaths, ill-planned wars, and societal degradation that have occurred since 1957? and be happy. Mr. Churchill gives us a radiant Brooke Lewis Bellas, more sultry dames, homages to Hitchcock and film noir classics, and a vehicle to look into our mirrors and correct the paths we have taken that could lead to ruination. Enjoy "The Day of the Living Dead," and realize...good times are ours to seize.

To see this film on Amazon Prime, click this link THE DAY OF THE LIVING DEAD 

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