Today is the conclusion of my series of Swamp Zombies film reviews. You can check out part 1 here. This review will cover the brand new sequel to the original independent zombie flick.
The hottest reality TV Show in the world, “Lucky Stiffs”, is about to get even more hot. Contestants from all over the globe try to win big cash prizes and fame by competing on the show against each other and survive the shows “stars”…..zombies!!. However, there’s a problem, a renegade contestant (“Mouse”) is trying to expose the show as unethical and the show’s producer’s are grasping at straws to find Mouse. When all the producer’s attempts have failed, he’s left with one choice…to free “Jack” from a top secret Black ops prison and send him into the show. Jack has the kung fu skills to stay alive to find Mouse and bring her to the Producer……and he knows a thing or two about zombies.
Much like the original movie, Len Kabisinski’s second trip into the Swamp Zombies universe has a pretty original premise. This movie takes place after the first, with society having gotten used to living side by side with the undead. The reality show involving zombies was a cool idea, sort of like Survivor meets Dawn of the Dead. I won’t spoil it here, but there is a twist at the end which is nice. This isn’t you’re average indie zombie plot.
Speaking in terms of cinematography alone, SW2 is a severed head and shoulders above its predecessor. Instead of a generic heavy rock soundtrack, there is an effective use of mood music in some scenes. While the film doesn’t necessarily keep you on the edge of your seat, you can certainly see an improvement over their previous effort.
Once again, Swamp Zombies 2 isn’t going to be the kind of cinematic adventure to keep you up at night. There are a few special scenes with some ferocious zombies that may not be suitable for younger viewers. The good news is there wasn’t a fistful of attempted scares that just came off silly.
My favorite part about watching this film were some of the special effects. Along with the updated cinematography, there is an upgrade in gore. The overall look of the zombies themselves is much improved. There is no shortage of blood and entrails, and while footage from Swamp Zombies 2 may not be mistaken for actual crime scene footage, the practical effect work will definitely suffice. There’s also a machete head splitting scene which is fun.
Besides the main character, Jack, it seemed like no other characters were in the first film. While there was no real star power (besides horror host Mr. Lobo), the acting was nothing to be embarrassed by. The zombie actors all seemed great with no glaring issues.
Swamp Zombies 2 ended up being pretty watchable. I think what sets this apart from the original film is the improved production quality and the fact that it didn’t take itself too seriously. While still a serious film, there was well placed humor throughout. This allows for a more enjoyable experience for the viewer. Decent special effects and an entertaining plot make this a movie that the supporter of indie horror ought to see. You may not be blown away, but I don’t think you’ll regret it. I didn’t.