Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Lucio Fulci's "Zombie" Gets a Halloween Re-release

I have never actually made it through all of Lucio Fulci's 1979 "unofficial sequel" to Romero's Dawn of the Dead (Fulci actually uses footage from Romero's film). Released in Europe as Zombi 2, Zombie has one of the genre's most infamous (not to mention preposterous) scenes of all time -- but more on that in a moment.

First of all, as a movie, Zombie is rather terrible. A ridiculous plot, nonsensical editing and downright awful acting just can't make up for the outrageous gross-outs Fulci and his team committed to celluloid. The closest thing to a star the movie has is Mia Farrow's sister, Tisa. The Italian actors spoke Italian while the Americans spoke English (how confusing must that set have been?) and the whole thing was badly dubbed into English by American actors who must have been rejected by every community theatre company in North America. As far as Uncle P is concerned, there are only two reasons to see Zombie: Gianetto di Rossi's outrageous make-up effects and the aforementioned infamous scene.

Recently, the movie was digitally restored and will see a limited release at select theaters for Halloween, just before the Blu-Ray version hits stores. Hitflix reports that the film has never looked so good. I first saw half of it at an inner-city theater where the audience was so loud, I was forced to leave half-way through, and again on grainy VHS, which I just couldn't stand to watch, especially given the very bad 'acting.' I'll have to try again, I suppose, if only for that scene. You know you the one. You've seen it, even if you've never seen the movie. It was recently featured in a cell-phone commercial and remains one of the most discussed scenes in the genre's history, if only because no one can figure out just how Fulci did it:

What the hell? Somehow, Fulci convinced a stuntman to get into a tank with a live shark, wrestle with and bite it and then stick a fake arm in it's mouth! Can you imagine a director attempting something like that today? The insurance company would shut that sh*t down before you could say "Hell no!"

A complete list of dates and cities for the re-release can be found at Hitflix here. The Blu-Ray drops on October 25th. 

Um... Okay, then.

More, anon.

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