ZOMBIE NATION

zombie nation

ZOMBIE NATION (2004)

IMDb Rating: 1.5/10

Tagline: Terror in Numbers

   It’s impossible to say who is the worst director working in cinema today. But only for legal reasons. Ulli Lommel is a German born auteur who displays all the filmmaking craft of a drunken bachelorette groping a stripper. In fact, Ulli Lommel is the expletive Bavarians use when they get their foreskin caught in their zip. We had heard his films were bad but watching Zombie Nation was as unwelcome a surprise as finding blood in your stool.

ulli lommel

Ulli Lommel- Awesome Herr

Lommel is the most dependable filmmaker around- all his films without fail are utter balls. Zombie Nation is currently rated the 7th worst film ever made by the IMDb. Lommel also has an entry at number 2 on the same list.

The premise for Zombie Nation is simple- a violent LA cop kidnaps women he meets while on the beat, takes them to a deserted warehouse, then drugs, fondles, kills and buries them. This is a basic, misogynist, exploitation story. However, Lommel attempts to justify Officer Singer’s behavior, and add some unnecessary subtext, with some risible oedipal flashbacks of his mother in a mental asylum, a disabled doctor and a naked guy being caned. The only horror here is the pretension of the tragically ungifted.

The cast are so bad, even a low budget porn performer would quit in disgust. Even hiring the cast of Haunted Boat could not have made it worse- which is akin to insisting that rubbing chillis on your eye is better than a series of paper cuts to your scrotum.

zombie nation

Gunter Ziegler. Talent Not Pictured. Ever.

Gunter Ziegler, the heavily accented Austrian ‘actor’ who plays Officer Singer, has all the charisma of a neglected pot plant. It’s almost impossible to make out what he is saying. He possesses all the diction of a man with an ulcerated mouth full of crisps.

What is clear however, is that Officer Singer’s rookie partner may be the worst policeman since Top Cat’s Officer Dibble. The young cop says nothing when Singer arrests a woman for jaywalking, takes her to his warehouse, demands the youngster wait in the car, then emerges later, alone and carrying a large, heavy, body-shaped canvas bag. Apparently the academy taught that this was perfectly reasonable behavior so the rookie’s eyebrows remain firmly unraised. Indeed, he also remains silent when they return to their precinct- where the interior is cunningly styled like the back office of struggling furniture factory outlet, peopled with a group on day release, all in fancy dress.

zombie nation

Sale Must End Monday

Singer’s sadistic reign of tedium eventually comes a cropper. Before she was killed, one of his foreign victims sought mystical protection from harm by visiting a group of voodoo priestesses, who actually resemble a bad tempered pan-African coffee morning. For reasons that aren’t explained, and 47 minutes into an 81 minute film, five of Officer Singer’s victims then rise from the grave to hunt him down and exact a tedious revenge.

Five. It’s less a zombie nation and more a zombie flatshare.

zombie nation

Terrifying Zombie Pandas

Sadly however, these ‘zombies’ are the least terrifying undead since a later episode of Last Of The Summer Wine. Eschewing the usual dripping flesh and peeling skin, these zombies are identifiable by their idiosyncratic raccoon style make up. They look like an enthusiastic Siouxsie & the Banshees tribute band.

Zombie Nation is an oily discharge of a film that makes 28 Days Later look like 28 Days. It’s pretentious, exploitative rubbish and about as scary as an afternoon at an adorable puppy exhibition. It’s not that the director’s reach exceeds his grasp. It’s more that Lommel’s reach is that of an arthritic pensioner wearing a straitjacket. It is one of the most incompetent, nasty, poorly acted films we’ve ever endured. It’s glorious. And it’s not even his worst.

 

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