The influence of George A. Romero’s 1968 horror masterpiece Night of the Living Dead on the genre is huge. There have been countless sequels, rip offs, tributes, games, and even pop culture events (zombie walks) thanks to the seminal favorite. In recent years some filmmakers have tried to do something different with the inspiration, like 2009’s Night of the Living Dead Reanimated, which took the original film and remade it using various animation techniques. The most recent attempt at a new spin is Douglas Schulze’s Mimesis, out now.
Several random strangers are invited to a house party and find themselves passed out after drinking. When they awake they are at a secluded house amidst farmland and all of them are wearing retro styled clothes different from what they were wearing at the party. When they try to leave they find the house is surrounded by being that act like zombies. They soon piece together that each of them was selected to portray a different character from George A. Romero’s classic horror film Night of the Living Dead. But when they try to escape the bizarre situation, they find they are involved in a dangerous game that puts their very lives at risk.
When Mimesis started out, I was very intrigued. The acting was pretty good despite the low budget and the premise of the film was original and interesting. As the film progresses, it unfortunately falls apart despite the filmmakers best intentions. The story could have worked so well, but by the halfway mark so many asinine and ridiculous things happen, you just can’t help but shake your head. Alan Maldonado is a solid lead here, but what could have been an intense and interesting story of survival and a movie that leaves you constantly wondering if it is all set up or actually happening dissolves into a silly flick full of clichés and dumb characters making dumber decisions. Even though they have a decent supply of weapons in the house, they are scared stiff of three unarmed guys just because they have zombie makeup on. I just didn’t get where the film went when it had so much potential.
The Blu-ray from Anchor Bay looks pretty nice despite the movie’s budget. Colors are natural, clarity and detail are decent and the sound is solid. There is some content to enjoy here, especially for fans of the original Night of the Living Dead, but it ultimately falls apart when the screenwriters seem to run out of ideas. Too bad too, it had me at the start.
Available now on Blu-ray and DVD.