Posted: 10/04/2011

 

George: A Zombie Intervention

(2009)

by Jason Coffman




Film Monthly Home
Archives
Wayne Case
Interviews
Steve Anderson
The Rant
Short Takes (Archived)
Small Screen Monthly
Behind the Scenes
New on DVD
The Indies
Horror
Film Noir
Coming Soon
Now Playing
Television
Books on Film
What's Hot at the Movies This Week
Interviews TV

There is certainly no lack of low-budget zombie films out there, and a good number of them fall into the crowded “zom-com” subgenre. Making a worthwhile zombie film is always a tricky proposition, and making a worthwhile zombie comedy is even more of a gamble. Most of these films manage to fail on multiple levels, either with poor writing, bad acting, seriously misjudged tone, etc. So it’s a genuine surprise when a shot-on-video zombie comedy comes along that gets so many of these things right and delivers a truly funny take on familiar material. George: A Zombie Intervention is one of these pleasant surprises, a goofy and gory comedy with a solid cast and sharp writing.

The film opens with an educational “cartoon” explaining that zombies are a way of life in the world George. As long as they stay out of sunlight, they can remain more or less intact and even continue to lead relatively normal lives. When they deteriorate enough to become brain dead, they become the more familiar dangerous flesh-eater kind of zombie. With
this established, the film introduces Ben (Peter Stickles) and Francine (Shannon Hodson), the best friend and sister of a sad-sack zombie named George (Carlos Larkin). Worried that George has been eating people, Ben and Francine get together with George’s ex-girlfriend Sarah (Michelle Tomlinson) and “Professional Interventionist” Barbara (Lynn Lowry) to stage an
intervention. Unfortunately, Sarah’s new boyfriend Steve (Eric Dean) tags along for “moral support,” and George’s friend Roger (Vincent Cusimano) has no idea what an intervention is and assumes it just means they’re getting together to party at George’s place.

Once the intervention begins, things quickly go south: George is anything but receptive to his friends’ concerns, and before long a traveling salesman (Adam Fox) ends up dead— and then undead— in George’s basement, a pair of Mormon missionaries show up, Roger passes out on the couch after inviting some strippers over, and Francine can’t stop baking. As the bodies pile up and George’s friends try to figure out what’s going on, it becomes clear that someone other than George is knocking off the house guests, and that everyone has some secrets of their own that they would rather keep under wraps. What started out as an intervention becomes a fight for survival, or at least a fight to not get eaten and then have to hang out in George’s
basement all the time.

The main asset that George: A Zombie Intervention has going for it is a great cast. Lynn Lowry— yes, the same Lynn Lowry from Romero’s The Crazies, Cronenberg’s Shivers, and Metzger’s Score— is particularly hilarious as the inept intervention specialist, but everybody gets some choice lines and gives a great performance. There are even a pair of impeccably selected cameo appearances near the end that act as a cherry on top. First-time feature writer/director J.T. Seaton has delivered as solid a low-budget debut as you could possibly ask for, and Breaking Glass Pictures scored a hit in picking it up for release.

Breaking Glass Pictures and Vicious Circle Films release George: A Zombie Intervention on DVD on 4 October 2011. Special features include deleted and alternate scenes, a cast and crew commentary, behind the scenes footage, a “Zombie Rehab Center” featurette and a short film (“Sunday on the Street with George”).

Jason Coffman is a film writer living in Chicago. He writes reviews for Film Monthly and “The Crown International Files” for Criticplanet.org as well as contributing to Fine Print Magazine (www.fineprintmag.net).



Got a problem? E-mail us at filmmonthly@gmail.com