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Thursday, 31 January 2013

The Thin White Dude's (Capsule) Reviews - Cockneys Vs Zombies

Directed by: Mattias Hoene

Produced by: Andrew Boswell
Simon Crowe
James Harris
Matthew Joynes
Mark Lane

Screenplay by: James Moran
Lucas Roche

Starring: Harry Treadaway
Rasmus Hardiker
Alan Ford
Michelle Ryan
Georgia King
Richard Briers
Honor Blackman

Music by: Jody Jenkins

Cinematography by: Daniel Bronks

Editing by: Neil Farrell
John Palmer

Studio(s): Limelight
Tea Shop & Film Company

Distributed by: Aya Pro Company
Shout! Factory

Release date(s): August 23, 2012 (London FrightFest)
August 31, 2012 (United Kingdom)

Running time: 87 minutes

Country: United Kingdom

Language: English

Production budget: N/A

Box office revenue: $18,205 (UK Opening Weekend)

Another zombie movie was my attitude going in. I love the genre and the George Romero films that spawned it (equally, Shaun Of The Dead is as responsible as any for this particular film!), but I have seen a lot of lacklustre horror films this year. A family of inept crooks play to rob a bank to save their grandfather's retirement home from being demolished, but their plan is scuppered when construction workers smash open a condemned 17th-Century graveyard and unleash a zombie apocalypse. Voulez vous? Let's get crackin'!

The good news is that Cockneys Vs Zombies is a very funny movie. Some of the gags/set-pieces are among the best scripted of the year. A high-speed chase involving a zombie and an elderly gentleman with a Zimmer frame and a zombie incarnation of a London East-End football riot with West Ham and Milwall ("Even when they're zombies they can't stand each other") are among the highlights. It also boasts some strong performances from Ashley Bashy Thomas, Richard Briers and in particular the mighty Alan Ford, whose 'Granda' is one of the funniest characters to come around in the past few years. The songs selected are appropriate, with bands such as The Kaiser Chiefs and The Automatic keeping the ball rolling. Finally, it's a movie with a genuine personality that is handled with confidence.

The bad news is that while it's very good, it's not quite in the top tier of the genre. The central premise of robbing a bank is pretty flimsy, and every time we cut to the retirement village, it reminds me that this is where the movie should be set. Also, it moves in rather predictable ways that you can spot a mile off, which detract from the unique qualities it possesses. 

Yes, it's predictable and the central bank-robbing premie is rather flimsy, but I still enjoyed Cockneys Vs Zombies. There are some unique gags/set-pieces that are very funny and strong performances, particularly from the show-stealing Alan Ford. Also, the soundtrack is appropriate, keeping the ball rolling, and even with flaws, it's a movie a genuinely personality that is handled with confidence.

The Thin White Dude's Prognosis - 7.2/10

The Thin White Dude's Self-Diagnosis - Playing it sweet (I'm busy in more ways than one, so trying to pace myself!)

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