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Beyond Re-Animator

Spain/USA 2003
produced by
Brian Yuzna, Julio Fernández for Fantastic Factory, Filmax, Castelao Producciones, Vía Digital, Instituto de la Cinematografía y de las Artes Audiovisuales (ICAA), ICF
directed by Brian Yuzna
starring Jeffrey Combs, Jason Barry, Elsa Pataky, Simón Andreu, Santiago Segura, Lolo Herrero, Enrique Arce, Nico Baixas, Joaquín Ortega, Raquel Gribler, Tommy Dean Musset, Bárbara Elorieta, Ángel Plana, Javier Sandoval, César Nebreda
screenplay by José Manuel Gómez, based on a story by Migual Tejada-Flores & a character by H.P. Lovecraft, special effects by Screaming Mad George, music by Xavier Capellas, theme by Richard Band

Re-Animator

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Herbert west, the Re-Animator (Jeffrey Combs) is at it again (even though he died at the end of Bride of the Re-Animator) & revives corpses like nobody's business, but unfortunately this time around one of his zombies (Ángel Plana) kills a young woman (Bárbara Elorrieta), & the police ghets him for that.

13 years later: West is still in jail, trying his best to continue his experiments to reawaken the dead under primitive, alnmost non-existent conditions. Then though a new prison doctor, Howard (Jason Barry) starts his work at the jail, & he knows about West (actually he was the brother of the woman killed 13 years ago), but not only does he know about hmk & his work, he has actually brought some of West's re-animation serum (probybly the last in existence) with him & soon has West persuaded to, together with him, continue the experiments ... & occasion arises sooner than anyone thinks: In the prison yard Moses (Nico Baixas) gets beaten up badly no 5 minutes after Howard has started his new job, & he even dies before he reaches the infirmary. But West wouldn't be West would he be able to let an opportunitzy go by, & before long he has injected his serum into Moses & turned him into a violent zombie, who can be confined to solitary only withthe greatest of efforts. From here on, Howard is convinced of West's talents & soon the 2 build themselves a neat little lab in an unused room behind the infirmary.

At around the same time, journalist Laura Olnay (Elsa Pataky) has started writing about an article about the prison, & she soon has figured Howard would be a safe bet for a good story, & the 2 soon become lovers as well.

West soon discovers what went wrong with all his previous, violent zombies ... he forgot to give them personality, & evetnually he finds out how that is done, but at least has theorretically has little reservatins giving humans rats' personalities, for him it's all the same anyways.

Meanwhile, Laura has charmed the prison warden (Simón Andreu) into giving her the grande tour through the psison & has soon also bribed a guard into giving her access to Moses ... & from here on it goes wrong: At first, naturally Moses attacks her, then the warden finds out she's with Moses - the only place she's not supposed to be -, gets his ear bitten off by Moses, then strangles her to death whiloe letting Moses escape. & while Howard suddenly has to find his girlfriend dead on his operating table, Moses the menacing zombie gone wild entices the other convicts to start a prison revolt. & while theya are at it killing guards, the warden finds West's & Howard's little lab, & actually catches them eed-handed re-animating Laura. West soon knocks him out & figures (since Howard refuses to five Laura a rat's personality) the warden would be a perfect personality donor - even if, no especially if that would mean the warden's death ...

... the personality transfer doesn't work too perfectly though, as sometimes Laura is just the sweet Laura Howard has fallen in love with, but at times she turns into a homicidal monster with superhuman strngth ... which is just as well because by now the clonvicts have taken over the prison, & seeing her have nothing but rape on their minds ... & eventually a bunch of them ends up cut to pieces.

Meanwhile West couldn't let another sleeping corpse lie & has re-animated - of all people - the warden, who soon overcomes West & uses his serum to his advantage, by killing a few convicts & guards alike then re-animating them & put them into his services.

Wghen finally a SWAT-team storms the prison, pretty much everyone is killed, & they find Howard leaning over Laura's body, just having cut off her head (because she has begged him for it not wanting to become a wild monster again), & arrest him.

But what about West ?

This time he got away, having assumed the identity of the prison doctor to get throught the SWAT team ... & now everyone can only wonder where corpses will start walking next.

Santiago Segura plays a constantly spaced out convict who, at one point, even injects himself some re-animation serum while still alive, so rather comical results.

 

Beyond Re-Animator is (of course) no match for the original Re-Animator, but it is an improvement over Bride of the Re-Animator, the second Re-Animator film: where Bride of the Re-Animator was episodic & full of references to the first film, Beyond Re-Animator has a self-sufficient & stringent plot.

Taken by its own merits, Beyond Re-Animator is an enjoyably wild & trashy mix of prison-, mad scientist- & zombie-clichés that never takes itself too seriously while not invariably going for the cheap laugh. & if you're not put off by gore, cut-off limbs, gross humour & the occasional narrative inconsistency, this should make one and a half hours of good entertainmant.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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In times of uncertainty of a possible zombie outbreak, a woman has to decide between two men - only one of them's one of the undead.

 

There's No Such Thing as Zombies
starring
Luana Ribeira, Rudy Barrow and Rami Hilmi
special appearances by
Debra Lamb and Lynn Lowry

 

directed by
Eddie Bammeke

written by
Michael Haberfelner

produced by
Michael Haberfelner, Luana Ribeira and Eddie Bammeke

 

now streaming at

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Robots and rats,
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Tales to Chill
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Tales to Chill
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