Have you ever found yourself watching Superbad and thinking, “I wish there was a less well-written version of this with zombies and more annoying characters,”? Then this movie is for you!
That sounds harsher than I mean it to. I apologize to the scouts and their stripper friend. Let’s break it down.
Ben, Carter and Augie are sophomores in high school. They are Boy Scouts. Augie loves being a scout. Ben and Carter are planning on quitting – because being a Boy Scout is super lame, you guys – but don’t want to hurt Augie’s feelings.
The three of them are going on an overnight scout trip with Scout Leader Rodgers (a Dolly Parton-loving David Koechner) when Ben and Carter are invited to a super-secret high school party by Kendall’s (Carter’s hot sister, who Ben has a very obvious crush on) boyfriend. But it’s the same night as the camp-out! What are these scouts going to do?
They’re going to ditch Augie after he goes to sleep and go to the party, because that sounds like a plan that will go very well. Somewhere along the line, they meet up with Denise, a former high school dropout who now works at a local strip club.
Pretty standard high school sex comedy stuff, really. Until the zombies show up.
We see the outbreak at the beginning of the movie. They are being studied at some local sciency place, which allows burnout janitors to just dance right into the zombie zone. It seemed like they probably could have secured the area a little better, but that’s just me being cautious, I guess.
At this point, Ben, Carter, Augie (who joins up with them after having some adventures by himself) and Denise are still trying to get to the party. Not because they want to hook up with seniors (they do, though), but because they want to save everyone there from the zombies. Also, the military is planning on wiping out the entire city to stop the zombie spread (as seen in Resident Evil: Apocalypse, The Crazies, Return of the Living Dead and many, many more).
I just used a whole lot of words on a pretty simplistic plot. I apologize. I could have just said, “high school boys attempt to procure alcohol and bang girls way out of their league, also zombies.” Or, to kind of repeat myself from earlier, “Superbad: Rave To The Grave,” complete with one of the characters (Carter) trying to be a skinny Jonah Hill in the worst way. Anyway, let’s get to some thoughts.
It was fine. Carter’s whole “Jonah Hill in Superbad,” act got old really quick, and I didn’t really care for bland Ben, but I really liked Augie and Denise. I liked Augie because he wasn’t ashamed of who he was (he also created the best weapon when it came to killin’ time) and Denise because, underneath her gruff demeanor, was actually quite sweet. Her and Ben formed a weird little friendship that I genuinely enjoyed watching. She treated Carter like garbage, because he was a jackass and needed to be put in his place. I liked that, because Carter deserves everything bad in this world.
Ultimately, we’re talking about zombie comedy, so let’s talk about the zombies.
It was unclear how they were going to play it. The first zombies we see are typical Romero zombies. We also see a zombie deer, so we know it can cross species.
Then we get to a scene early in the outbreak where our heroes are making a stand in a liquor store parking lot. A horde of zombies are lurching towards them. Suddenly, one of the zombies goes down on all fours and starts running at them like a flesh-eating ape. Okay then. We’re dealing with Day of the Dead (remake) zombies.
We also find out that the zombies retain something of their pre-zombie memories, much like latter day Romero zombies (as first seen in the original Day of the Dead). How do we find this out? Why, the scouts sing “…Baby One More Time” to a zombie wearing a Britney Spears t-shirt, and the zombie attempts to sing along. It’s a highly scientific method.
There is some decent gore, especially when the scouts “weapon up” and hit the party. They created a bunch of zombie-killing weapons from random hardware store items, because apparently they had all earned their Weapon Making merit badges. Lots of death, destruction, mayhem, etc.
If you like the image of someone using a zombie penis as a handle, only to tear that handle off and send it flying through the air, there is also a scene like that. There is also a scene where someone takes a selfie with a pair of zombie boobs. I did not care for those scenes.
I can’t say I enjoyed this movie all the way through, but there were enough funny/bloody moments to keep me entertained. There’s something I had to keep in mind as I was watching this: I am 35 years old. This movie was not really made with the “approaching middle-age man” in mind. If I was in high school or college, I’m sure I would find this movie hilarious. It’s a bit of dumb fun with crude jokes, lots of gore and a little nudity. It’s fast-moving enough to make it easy to overlook its flaws.
Although, honestly, if you switch out Carter for a character who is less obnoxious, I’m sure I would have enjoyed this more than I did. As it stands, this was a fun movie that I will probably never watch again. If I do, it’ll probably be on mute, in the background of a party.