Survival of the Dead (2009)

Written & Directed by: George A. Romero


Alan Van Sprang .... Sarge 'Nicotine' Crocket
Kenneth Welsh .... Patrick O'Flynn
Kathleen Munroe .... Janet / Jane Flynn
Devon Bostick .... Boy
Richard Fitzpatrick .... Seamus Muldoon

Athena Karkanis .... Tomboy
Stafano DiMatteo .... Francisco
Joris Jarsky .... Chuck

Release Dates: Venice Film Festival: September 9, 2009 (Italy); Toronto International Film Festival: September 12, 2009; Vienna International Film Festival: November 3, 2009; Gérardmer Fantasticarts Film Festival: January 30, 2010; Limited Theatrical: May 28, 2010 (USA)

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A group of soldiers lead by a tough as nails Sergeant Nicotine Crocket (Alan Van Sprang) and a group of hillbilly hunters lead by Patrick O'Flynn (Kenneth Welsh) are struggling against the living dead while going to a harbour to take a boat to an island off the coast of North America with others fishing up zombie's and shooting them in the head as well as killing some on a boat while landing on the island and hoping for a cure to return their un-dead relatives back to their human state.
When they enter the island they travel to a farm area which almost looks like local residents only to find out that they're zombie's along with some survivors owned by Seamus Muldoon (Richard Fitzpatrick) whom is very unpleasant and has deadly plans for all of these people by using them as targets for these zombies in which he kept Patrick's daughter Jane (Kathleen Munroe) whom is part of the living dead to practise on the survivors with what she will do to them.


I enjoyed the previous sequel which was a found footage titled Diary of the Dead but this film really bit the dust. Well... there were some effective moments like the great dark scene's with rednecks fishing for zombies and shooting them as well as a military taking a boat to an island and killing off more zombie's there too but the story on this was very rushed.
The scene looks quite fun when they land on the island and drive to a farm area and the picture really fools you seeing locals like a mailman delivering mail only to find out that they're zombie's as they repeat to what they're doing since that was the last time they did a task before turning into a zombie.
There's good settings with Sarge 'Nicotine' Crocket and his people camping out in the woods and good close up shots on him doing target practice with his gun by shooting decapitated zombie heads in.
There's a nice dark shot on a fisherman reeling in a zombie and shooting it along with a harbour zombie coming up from behind and trying to attack him both falling into the water.
Many fast action shots on everyone trying to get onto a boat as well as shooting zombie's that are on board along with a good shot on Nicotine lighting one of them on the head, then lighting a cigarette and then kicking him off the boat which added some good spunk with the situations on all of this.
A nice intense shot on Nicotine getting angry and constantly smashing a window glass inside of a vehicle.
There's also exciting moments with the army out in the woods near the farm doing events and playing around with the dead as well as some creepy moments with some zombie attacks as well as sympathetic behaviors towards family members who turned into a zombie which seemed touching in many spots. Plus some bad dudes trying to use some of their eenemies as a target for the living dead which seemed suspenseful and intense too.
Good moments with people like him and Tomboy having a discussion and spotting a farm area with shots on zombies at the farm going back and fourth doing things which looked quite twisted.
There's good shots on each Nicotine and supporting character Kenny lying down on the ground after a fight with some zombie's laughing and then Nicotine himself acting sarcastic as well as him suddenly lying lifeless with him getting up and trying to awaken him and getting anxious and intense.
A nice close up camera shot with supporting character Beth lifeless lying near a marsh and Patrick lifting up her head and then she springs up as a zombie about to attack which looked good.
There's good shots on the characters near a farm cattle shooting zombie's and good side shots on then doing so near the horse's kennel and other places. There's also disturbing moments with animals being eaten which may not be for the squeamish that is if you especially love horses.
There's a good emotional discussion between Tomboy and Francisco when he is about to kill himself after being bitten by a zombie and she tells him it's a sin to do so and helps shoot him in the head. The conversation on this looked very touching and strong.
Good close up shots on Nicotine riding a horse along with a close up shot on Janet looking lifeless while riding her horse along with great takes on the horse chase on all of this. There's a good moment when he approaches her after they get off the horse with her acting expressionless towards him and he tries to reach out to her, next thing she is about to bite him which showed good timing.
There's good moments with Tomboy held hostage and Seamus Muldoon on the other end taunting her and just getting nasty looking like a mafia type of setting.
Also good settings with Seamus taking Tomboy outside tied up and using her for a target towards the zombie's which looked suspensefully done on all that is happening around them.
A good shot on Francisco walking in the dark woods and a shadowy figure zooming by her.
There's a nice strong moment with her telling Patrick off about a situation and really getting emotional about it all in which was another good strong moment between the two of them as daughter and father.
There's a nice moment with Francisco between different takes walking up and another take on her as the sibling standing there and then biting her hand with the next take on her acting shocked about it all.
Yet most of it fell flat as it seems that George A. Romero is running out of ideas and not knowing when to bring his legacy to an end. Still, I respect the fact that he continued on with it and not letting his remakes get in the way in which I'd like to see original films like Halloween and My Bloody Valentine still carrying on.
Bottom line is this film is hard to follow and doesn't focus alot by what had happened last time and is a bit of a bore and contrived too. But it saves from bombing with the moments mentioned here. Otherwise skip this and watch Night of the Living Dead to where it started off in which is a far better flick than this one.

The acting is fairly good in which lead actor Alan Van Sprang (Sarge 'Nicotine' Crocket) lived to play a warrior in combat. He had a good masculine look to his part and looking quite tough too. Also, he performs nicely when he is aggressive and forceful towards others making out that he is no one you want to screw around with too. His energy was very powerful too. He certainly came across well for a sequel to the Romero films like most of the other lead character actors in his previous films.
Kenneth Welsh
(Patrick O'Flynn) really brought attention to the audience with his rough neck behavior and was great with his gruff words along with acting like a stubborn older fellow and just bringing it on with his hunting down the zombie's along with his shotgun too. He certainly didn't show a lacking moment at all with what he had to do in the film. He was also good by having a sympathetic attitude too when it came to family members in which he shows a nice versatality to his performance.
Kathleen Munroe
(Janet / Jane Flynn) portrays two different roles in the flick as twin siblings and can be fairly convincing that they're two different parts. In her role as Janet she sure knew how to do well with her emotions and playing a girl next door too. In her role as Jane she really knew how to portray as someone who is dead with her expressionless attitude and can come across as someone very different.
Richard Fitzpatrick
(Seamus Muldoon) played a perfect bad ass redneck in which he certainly came across as someone you definetely want to avoid with his aggressive behavior and taunting attitude. He certainly studied this role incredibly well. He seemed to come across as someone like Hitler.
There's a nice supporting role by A
thena Karkanis (Tomboy) who does well with her powerful speaking and strong concentration as a soldier in the film. She came across well playing a tomboy with her tough as nails attitude. Her energy was very high and played a perfect key role to the film.

Sides of necks and faces are bitten off
Heads are blown off or just bloodily shot
Arms are bitten
Bodies are eaten up
Decapitated zombie heads are revealed
A horse is eaten up

There's some good echoey low thumping sounds in some spots of the film. There's of course the slamming sounds with the fast paced orchestral violin playing. Also, there's great deep bass violin playing in other spots too which sounds loud and clear. The music was put together by Robert Carli.