Saturday, November 14, 2009

Zombie Outbreak @ Portage Theater

Thanks to the Chicago Horror Society, we were graced with yet another excellent horror film festival at the Portage Theater. This one zombie-themed with a few short films followed by feature length movies. Met up w/Ron (@rpringle) and got there in time for the short Chemical 12-D, a very cool little film (but not worth counting towards my movie total at maybe 10min in length).

The first full length was Colin, directed by Marc Price on a supposed budget of $70. Yes, seventy dollars. Like the critics who saw this at Cannes, I too find that hard to believe considering the length & practical effects involved. Not a bad "day in the life of a zombie" flick but could've used some editing to reduce the runtime a bit and tighten it up and less shaky-cam. Overall decent all things considered.

Next up was a real treat: Pathogen by 12 year old director Emily Hagins. Of course, this film is not so much a work of art but rather a work of heart. It's touching and humorous (mostly unintentionally so) and really a wonderful film starring mostly 12 year old kids dealing with zombies. A flick I need to buy and look forward to screening at future movie nights. Wish I was that capable at her age. Seriously impressive.

After a brief meeting w/@FreddysFingers during the break, we got to see Zombie Girl The Movie, the documentary about Emily Hagins making Pathogen. This was truly the best compliment to follow. Terrific & heartfelt documentary. Amazing to see how Pathogen came together and what was involved. Seeing both of these films back to back was perfect and totally made the night and festival.

The final feature was the classic The Return of the Living Dead in 35mm! Was thrilled to see this again having not seen it in 35mm since when it was originally released in 1985; it was a double-date film (and our dates loved it!). Always quite fun to see w/a crowd of zombie-fans... another rare example of humor & horror done well. Send more cops!

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