Tuesday, November 13, 2007

"Just because your dad tried to eat you, does that mean we all have to be unhappy forever?!"

I recently saw the Canadian zombie comedy (peep the awesomeness of those three words strung together in order), "Fido." People, this is the funniest movie I have seen in 2007. Seriously, I did not stop laughing the entire time. The zombie horror genre is perhaps the greatest horror sub-genre, in my opinion, because it has so much potential for social commentary ("Dawn of the Dead" being the most obvious example of critique-of-American-consumerism-as-represented-by-zombies), and "Fido" manages to touch on materialism, sexism, racism, necrophilia, slavery, facism, the homogenization of culture, the military-industrial complex...you name a topic, "Fido" rambles towards it and eats its brains.

"Fido" is a zombie horror set in the idyllic 1950's. It's basically what would happen if zombies invaded an episode of "Lassie." The music, the wardrobes, the sets, the cars and poodle skirts - everything is a hilarious 1950's stereotype. Until the zombies arrive. So doughy-white 50's television is the main point of reference, but a more subtle reference is the cinema of Douglas Sirk , films like "Written on the Wind" and "All That Heaven Allows," heavy melodramas that made "the neighbors" less a friendly, benign presence than a possibly intrusive, looming, unseen evil, more a part of the atmosphere than a part of a harmless social circle.

But the social commentary doesn't override the laugh-out-loud comedy. I literally laughed out loud throughout the entire film, despite the fact that the film (repeatedly) breaks Hollywood's last remaining taboo - a lot of innocent children die on-screen, which you still don't see a lot of these days in film. Kids also have to kill zombies, sometimes even the zombie forms of adults they knew in life. There's a great moment where a teacher asks a classroom "So how many of you kids have ever had to kill a zombie?" About half of the kids raise their hands, and the teacher sighs and says "Okay...not that many of you."

Basically, if you're a zombie horror fan, see this movie as soon as humanly possible. No societal convention is safe from its hunger.


Blogger saratoga said...

I want to see this so badly. I wish I had seen it when it was in town. BTW, when will you change what you are consuming in the side bar? I know you're not reading Convergence Culture anymore...

1:31 AM  

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