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RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD PART 4:...
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Reviewed by: JimmyO

Directed by: Ellory Elkayem

Starring:
John Keefe
Jana Kramer
Peter Coyote

Movie:  
star star star star
Extras:  
star star star star
Overall:  
star star star star
What's it about
After some twenty something high school kids play around on motorcycles, one dude gets hurt and he is supposedly taken to the hospital. When his buddies find out he’s been taken to a creepy research facility, they come to the rescue only to find that those brain munching zombies are back.
Is it good movie?
The trailer for Return of the Living Dead Part 4 claims that “the saga returns”. I wonder which saga is that? Because aside from the zombies in this flick constantly saying “BRAINS!” I’m just not seeing it. Necropolis feels nothing like the rest of the series. The humor is gone and the over-the-top comedy/gore/horror is gone. Director Ellory Elkayem decided to play this one straight; straight out of an O.C. version of a Romero classic (without the classic part). Although it seems somebody forgot to tell Peter Coyote this. He plays Uncle Charles, a man taking care of a teenager and his younger brother. But Charles is also one of the top dogs over at Hybra Tech; a company that kept the zombie problem under control. And they also make snack foods (clever). Mr. Coyote seems to be in a completely different movie than everyone else. He hams it up and looks really silly doing so. I’ve seen this guy act, he’s very good. But you wouldn’t know it from this; he gives one of the worst performances in the movie and that says a whole bunch. His extreme gesturing and constant “evil” smile just made me cringe, and not in a good way.

I also had issues with the zombie rules that are broken here. When the zombies start attacking, the heroes start shooting; and that means shooting anywhere but the head. They take aim at the chest, the stomach, possibly in the groin area (not sure on that one) but they just won’t shoot at their f*cking heads. If the plot revolved around these people having no idea what a zombie was, that might work. But that is not the case here, they know because there are constant reports on the “commercial” for Hybra Tech that they defeated them before. So when they finally do aim at the head, these zombies suddenly begin to die no matter where they get shot. What the f*ck? If you are making a zombie movie, don’t break the freakin’ rules just make sure your characters have better aim. And speaking of zombie rules, what was up with the finale and the Zeke character. You have to see it to believe it but I won’t give it away here. Dumb, dumb, dumb.

Necropolis is a good title, and should have been the only one. This might have been a little less disappointing if they hadn’t put the Return of the Living Dead name on it. Although far from a perfect movie, I did enjoy some of the cast including John Keefe as Charles teenage nephew, Jana Kramer as the girl who is “only a friend”, Elvin Dandel as the best buddy who has anger issues regarding ex-girlfriends and Aimee-Lynn Chadwick as the nerdy yet cute girl. Yes their dialogue was horribly written and they are much too old to be playing these roles; seriously, if you want to cast these actors, change the setting to college because that would be believable. It didn’t hurt the movie that you hire a few semi-talented and good-looking young guys and gals. But if you are looking for a little T & A, you’d better stick to porno cuz it ain’t here. On that level, the movie played it safe. But if you’re looking for gore, you could do worse. The zombies looked pretty cool and we get blown off heads, ripped off body parts and of course… BRAINS!
Video / Audio
Video: Not a bad 16x9 Widescreen transfer. When the blood poured it looked mostly red but it was a tad dark.

Audio: The 5.1 and 2.0 Dolby Digital sounded great with slushy brains and an Alt Rock soundtrack including Godsmack.
The Extras
Extras? What extras? This was bone dry, not too many brains here. We get a Trailer (1:38). Yep, a trailer for ROTLD 4… Enjoy!
Last Call
If this had not been a sequel to the much loved cult classic Return of the Living Dead it might have been a pretty decent B movie, but nope, they had to add on the 4. The cast is young and pretty, but not young enough for High School. And Peter Coyote was in the wrong movie. Maybe he would have fit in better in the first three. This had much too high of expectations to succeed, especially with a lousy script and zombie rules broken constantly. I thought this was an entertaining hour and a half but not nearly good enough to compete with its predecessors.
ARROW IN THE HEAD'S RATING SYSTEM
star star star star I'D BUTCHER MY FAMILY TO SEE THIS AGAIN
star star star HANG ME BUT I DUG IT A LOT
star star AN OK WAY TO KILL TWO HOURS
star JUST SLING AN ARROW IN MY HEAD AND LET ME DIE IN PEACE

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