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Zombie Holocaust - DVD - Another World Entertainment Print E-mail
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Written by Jay Creepy   
Monday, 19 August 2013
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Cover Art for "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

AKA: Zombi Holocaust, Dr. Butcher, M.D., Island of the Last Zombies, Medical Deviate, Zombie-massakren, Zombi Holocausto, La terreur des zombies, To olokaftoma ton zombi, Zombi: Anthropofagoi sti Nea Yorki, Cementerio de los zombies, Förintelsen, Dr. Butcher, Medical Deviate, Zombie 3, Holocausto de los Zombies, Zombies unter Kannibalen

Directed by:
Marino Girolami
Written by:
Fabrizio De Angelis, Romano Scandariato
Produced by:
Fabrizio De Angelis, Gianfranco Couyoumdjian
Cinematography by:
Fausto Zuccoli
Editing by:
Alberto Moriani
Music by:
Nico Fidenco
Special Effects by:
Maurizio Trani, Rosario Prestopino, Claudio Battistelli, Roberto Pace
Cast:
Alexandra Delli Colli, Ian McCulloch, Peter O'Neal, Donald O'Brien, Sherry Buchanan
Year:
1980
Country:
Italy
Color:
Color
Language:
English
Runtime:
1h 26min

Distributor: Another World Entertainment
 

"Zombie Holocaust" was one of Chas (Deep Red, Gorezone) Balun's fave films to preach about in many a magazine and it truly is a hardcore pull-no-punches kind of horror.  Riding high in the early eighties, rubbing shoulders with so many zombie and cannibal films like "Zombie Flesh Eaters" ("Zombie"), "Cannibal Ferox," "Cannibal Holocaust," "Hell of the Living Dead" and so on.  In fact, in 1980, to have a movie combine both elements should have been a masterpiece worthy of unlimited top star reviews forever.  Unfortunately though, "Zombie Holocaust" is a gut-wrenching “chunkblower” (to coin a Chas Balun term) but something is missing to make it a top level kind of flick.

The first scene is in a NYC hospital morgue, whilst a cheaply priced Flesh Eater's music score accompanies the doings, a gloved shadowed man hacks the hand off a cadaver with great glee.  As a matter of fact it's to our glee as well, since the action is prolonged as he saws away gruesomely.  The next day, the missing hand is noticed as a doctor and his students gather for an anatomy lesson.  To the left of Dr. Drylock is stood an orderly with the most incredible eyebrows ever seen in the nasties era.  Seriously!  Though this isn't the first time such an incident has happened, he decides against police involvement, being not one for attention raining down on his hospital.  Lori (Alexandra Delli Colli -- yes her, from "The New York Ripper"), who witnessed the whole thing, chats with Drylock, who thinks it might be a student gag; a fraternity thing.  “You should see the things we had to do in my day,” he says.  Whoa, let's imagine something more incredible than severing a corpses hand for a joke.  Perhaps forcing a pair of freshly removed balls from a corpse into a sleeping student's mouth?  Or even being made to rim a roadkill body?  Funny how flippant he is.

Students or not, it's beyond the joke when a nurse discovers a badly mutilated cadaver, she has a classic out of synch scream which had me and my Horror Soulmate giggling like sick kids watching their first banned horror.  The heart has literally been torn out.  Later, we see another being cut open.  This time the culprit is caught and about to bite the heart.  It's an orderly.  Everyone nearby is stunned: “Seems impossible.”  He then leaps from a window and transforms into a mad wobbling dummy which actually snaps it's arm mid fall.  The orderly's last word is, “Kito....”  As luck would have it, Lori knows a lot about natives in primitive lands.  She knows that Kito is a cannibal god worshipped by various tribes.  Lori is referred to Dr. Peter Chandler (Ian McCulloch) who shows her a slideshow of crime scenes recently fitting the mutilations.  Lori recognises a tattooed symbol identical to one seen on the orderly.

Of course we can forget all this since it's basically loose plot filler because sooner or later there's going to be an expedition in search of the cannibal tribe lead by Ian McCulloch, who in 1980 was fresh from battling Fulci's zombies on Matul and ready to rumble against more crusty faced rotters.  Lori, Peter, his friend George, and his reporter girl Susan all end up in a Land Rover and we have to hear worse music than the score in "Zombie Flesh Eaters" when they left on the boat.  Lori is well versed on these regions and the native tribes.  They meet with Dr. Obrero, played by the ever reliable Don O' Brien who met a rather dreadful end in "Emmanuelle and the Last Cannibals."  There's a sort of actors reunion between Mculloch as he sees that Dakar from "Zombie Flesh Eaters" is also around having much more to do in this film playing Molotto, Obrero's right hand man.

Once settled in for the night at Dr. Obreros, Lori takes her clothes off to find a decomposed head in the bed.  The same symbol tattooed on the orderly is daubed on the sheets.  Obrero is quite relaxed about the whole matter.  If they had meant to harm her, they would have done a lot more, he reasons.

The next day off they go guided by Molotto and a few expendable Vietnamese looking bearers.  Obrero doesn't join them because he's sinister.  Soon enough one of the poor little bearer fellas goes missing.  They all search and find him in pieces with that same symbol on a tree.  Faced by a group of natives, another forgettable bearer runs, the natives chase him chanting what sounds like “Mine! Mine! Mine!” like the seagulls in "Finding Nemo."  He is impaled and has his throat slit, then in a traditional cannibal moment, his innards are spilled and eaten.  Our heroes fire their rifles and clear the tribesmen.

The third and final unlucky bearer is killed that evening at the camp.  So now they are out of the way, it's time for the fun and games.  Molotto acts very suspicious.  Peter does not trust him and questions his motives.  The next cannibal attack is a game changer; Susan is taken, George is simply torn apart.  My Horror Soulmate pointed out a badly done eyeball gouging, “That was awful.”  We could tell that gore legend Giannetto De Rossi was busy elsewhere whilst this epic was made.  Then suddenly, the attack is interrupted by a handful of decayed growling zombies.  The cannibals run off and our survivors meet with Obrero at an old missionary building.

Making their way to the beach and a motorboat suggested by an anxious Obrero, Lori and Peter start debating over a few things which just don't add up.  Suddenly, they are attacked by a zombie.  Peter shoves the boats motor through its head.  On their way back to confront Obrero, the truth is slowly revealed.

It's hard for me to watch Ian Mculloch because of all the millions of interviews where he's basically slagged off these films.  Unlike, say David Warbeck who supported his roles in his Italian tour of duty to his death, Mcculloch has an attitude to this “trash.”  When I watch him nowadays, his scowls and furrowed eyebrows have a whole new meaning.

Alexandra Delli Colli is decent in the part she plays but the scriptwriter finds a lot of reasons to have her naked.  Don O' Brien and Alejandro Dakar are cool (Dakar reminds me of a sort of hybrid Sid Haig and Kimbo Slice) both are suitably sneaky and obvious bad guys from the moment we see them.

The zombie effects range from nearly good to... well, not on a "Zombie Lake" level but getting there.  The motorboat zombie scene is quite rugged and raw as an effect but looking at it again it's nothing noteworthy.  However, "Zombie Holocaust" has some outstanding effects elsewhere, like a brain removal, various organs pulled out and throat slicings.  It's interesting to note near enough every makeup effects and special effects worker has worked with Lucio Fulci at one point or another plus a whole host of other Italian classics.  There's good ideas and bad ideas.  We would have loved the final zombies vs. cannibals battle more had it lasted longer and the zombies been an actual threat.  For the most part they stand around and stare at people.  The beach zombie shows some promise by brandishing a weapon, but that's about it.  The biggest plus points are the cannibals, the bad guys, the whole lot of bloody fun and the fact there's no stock footage or filtered lenses at night.  The little things do count you know.

We reviewed a nifty release from  Denmark's Another World Entertainment as part of their Zombie Serien (sic) DVDs.  Titled "Zombie Massakren" and has a better cover than any of the UK or US releases.  The extras aren't bad either considering the cheap release.  There's a lengthy interview with FX guy Rosario Prestopino surrounded by severed heads.  Unfortunately, there isn't any dubbing or subtitles available for this.  The film trailers are split between it's original title and the infamous renamed "Dr. Butcher M.D."  All of them are just so excellent, but my preference is the German one for the full on gore and how careful it is not to reveal who the bad guy is (unlike "Dr. Butcher M.D." obviously) and the voice over which says “Zombie monster!

Elsewhere we've got a brief typed up career retrospective on the stars and FX guy, plus a trailershow section for "The Beyond,
" Cannibal Ferox,"  "Keoma," "Eaten Alive," and much more.  I've saved the best 'til last, which is a deleted scene and not the cruddy rabbit one either.  In what appears to be either an unfinished or simply a terribly choreographed fight between Ian McCulloch and a cannibal with sticks we watched in disbelief and wished for the rabbit one instead.
 

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

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Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

Screenshot from "Zombie Holocaust" ("Zombie Massakren") on DVD from Another World Entertainment on Severed Cinema

 RATING:
 VIDEO: 1 
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 AUDIO: 1 
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 DVD: 1 
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 MOVIE: 1 
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 DVD SPECS:
 Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 16:9
 Region: PAL R2
 Audio: Dolby Digital Stereo


 SUPPLEMENTAL MATERIAL:
 - Interview with Rosario Presopino (34 minutes)
 - US and German Trailers
 - Deleted Scene
 - Slideshow
 - Filmographies on Alexandra Delli Colli, Ian McCulloch, Marino Girolami, Rosario Presopino
 - Trailershow

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iKan88  - Good!     |8.35.201.xxx |2013-10-20 16:30:15
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