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Friday, December 8, 2017

Bio-Zombie (1998)



The Zombie movie marathon continues with this one from Hong Kong. Back in the early 2000s I discovered the Asian Horror scene and since I’ve always been a huge zombie movie fan I picked up everything that was available including Bio-Zombie. In fact, this movie was one of my first purchases and I remember liking it, but I’ve not watched it in maybe fifteen years. Time to take another look.

Our main characters are Woody and Bee. They are a couple of cool guys that work at a video store in a mall that apparently specializes in selling badly shot camcorder bootlegs. They get sent by their boss to pick his car up at the repair shop, where they pick a fight. I only mention this because here it is established that while they act tough they are actually sort of cowardly. All while this is happening we also see that the military is purchasing a bioweapon from the Iraqis. It’s a zombie virus that escapes and soon the infection is spreading everywhere.

Woody and Bee are on the way back to the mall and run into one of the men fleeing the deal that went wrong. Literally they run him down… They bring him back to the mall and sure enough the zombie virus gets loose and an outbreak happens after closing hours. They are locked in with zombies that seem to multiply rapidly. Our heroes then have to band together with the other survivors to escape the mall and warn someone what is happening. But when they get out they notice everyone is gone. It has hit the fan.

I think I can understand why I liked Bio-Zombie when it first came out, but the movie hasn’t aged well. The humor that was amusing the first time around fails. The constant video game references, Woody and Bee are shown playing a zombie first person shooter, gets old. Plus, it has been overused since Bio-Zombie. The overly cowardly husband and the bumbling cops also aren’t funny. The Sushi Boy character is dumb and inexplicably annoying to me now. Again, I can’t really blame the movie for this change of heart. Since my first viewing I’ve seen this same thing done time and time again. In many instances, it was executed better.

There was also a novelty of watching an Asian horror movie that no longer exists for me now. The characters yelling their dialogue constantly, which is a common thing in these low budget horror flicks, gets so damn annoying. The lame attempts at gore also don’t appeal to me. Maybe before I had seen a ton of low budget zombie movies the bad makeup was fun but it has worn out its welcome.

Spoilers ahead, you have been warned. Tacked onto the end of Bio-Zombie is an ending that doesn’t fit with the rest of it. Sure, people died but their deaths are played for laughs. But then Bee dies and it gets serious. It lightens back up with some Sushi Boy hijinks happen only to be followed by a serious ending. While the ending is well done and the actor playing Woody does an excellent job it doesn’t work with the rest of the movie. Unlike a Shaun of the Dead that has some drama mixed in with the comedy Bio-Zombie is mostly laughs and then a kick in the butt.

I used to like Bio-Zombie but now I don’t. Hopefully my review gave some explanation as to why I feel that way. It isn’t often that my opinion of a movie shifts so radically but occasionally it does. This is an example of one of those. I’d recommend skipping this one.




© Copyright 2017 John Shatzer

2 comments:

  1. I have yet to see it, probably be a good first time watch and then shelve it for good :)

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    Replies
    1. That is about what I would expect. Let me know what you think when you do check it out.

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