Very disappointing. The charm of the first two films is in the humor and the amusingly low budget effects that “interact” with the cast. There is one creature in the opening sequence of Beyond Re-Animator, a rather uninspired one at that, and nothing else for about 75 more minutes after having to suffer through a very dull prison riot for about 30 of those. And in this case there is only 1 shot where another person is even in one of the effects shot, and that effect is very poor.
The movie seems to be made with commercials in mind, as there are fade outs every 12 minutes or so. Even the rhythms of the story seem to play into the hands of edited for TV movies. I suspect the Sci-Fi channel can leave most of the movie as is (no superimposed fadeouts) and simply eliminate the nudity and some of the brief explicit gore scenes. Not until the very end do any of the zombies do anything non-Romero like. There’s a lot of unexplained mumbo jumbo about transferring souls via some sort of plasma extracted from a live body, and all of this material goes nowhere, and yet it seems to take up more than half the movie.
And while one does not look for decent acting in a film such as this, competency should at least be a requirement. The lead female in this movie is below porn-terrible, not aided by the fact that she has had all (and I do mean all) of her lines looped badly with ADR. She seems to have performed her lines phonetically anyway. Her love interest, obviously a replacement for Bruce Abbott, is like Devon Sawa’s much less talented brother in looks and in screen presence.
It’s a little sad when the most entertaining moment in the film (and this will most certainly be cut out of the TV broadcast) is during the closing credits, a sort of bizarre shadow puppet scene, between things that normally wouldn’t come in contact with each other. That said, the rest of it is severely boring and lacking any imaginative touches.
And for those who have seen it:
Why did they keep cutting back over and over to the rat playing with the penis? It’s not that I was grossed out, it was that the shot had no variation. It happened at least four times within a few minutes, and I kept thinking that perhaps the editor had nothing else to cut to.
For a concluding thought, who can explain the scenes where the warden wants the reporter to get on her knees and bark like a dog?