The walking dead has taken over just about every genre of film from comedy (Shaun of the Dead and Zombieland) to period film (Fido) to action (World War Z) to drama (AMC’s The Walking Dead) and now with war as seen in the film War of the Dead (2011). Now zombie-war films are nothing new (and you can even call World War Z a modern zombie-war film) but war takes center stage in War of the Dead.
During WWII a platoon of American and Finnish soldiers are driven into Russian territory where they discover that they have more to worry about than just the enemy as the dead begin to return to the living with a ferocious appetite for the living and for war. As the platoon’s number dwindles with each invading attack they soon discover the truth about the dead uprising and must decide who their true enemy in this new war is.
This film is more in the vein of an action film but director Marko Makilaakso knows how to throw in the scary and gore moments (something missing from World War Z) making this the perfect film for gore hounds. War films don’t always successful mix with the zombie genre but, in my opinion, this film has enough to satisfy. What may be a detriment to the film is the more elaborate liberties taken with these zombies as they are reminiscent of the undead found in Verses (200) or Dance of the Dead (2008) or the bonkers Day of the Dead (2008) remake that seem to defy gravity and can do supernatural things but I’m a huge fan of Verses and welcome zombies with more menace.
War of the Dead is definitely not for everyone especially those zombie fans who want a little logic to go with their zombie film but if you liked Dead Snow (2009) or Braindead (1992) then you’ll enjoy entering combat in War of the Dead.