By Peter Harper
When you review a film called CRACK HOUSE OF THE DEAD, you pretty have a strong sense of what to expect. This is a film that definitely won’t take itself too seriously or it shouldn’t do.
The story is a familiar narrative. A zombie outbreak occurs within a neighbourhood overrun by local drug dealers, undercover cops, prostitutes, gangsters etc, etc. The idea of the plot is to get all the main characters into the Crack House of the title and let all hell break loose, in which it succeeds.
Firstly, the film is an extremely low budget, independent film. This will certainly not be for everyone. The production values are borderline hand-held camcorder and the make-up effects of the zombies are very basic indeed. The film is slated as Grindhouse or Exploitation in tone, which it is to a degree, but what the director has clearly gone for is working within his means and using a whole host of innovation and ingenuity. His editing cuts and themes is what happens when you have no budget whatsoever, but just make it work.
There is a lot of things that just don’t work, but what’s important here is to see what does. What the film is lacking it quickly makes up for by delivering a great gore scene or shoot out. What the audience won’t be disappointed with is the amount of blood, gore and nudity as it certainly doesn’t shy away from them elements.
The greatest two aspects of the film is the director’s ambition, which I need to applaud. You can clearly see there’s an intelligent filmmaker at work here that given the opportunity of a bigger budget, I’d love to see what he’d deliver. The second is his cast who are pretty good considering. What I love is they take the material dead-serious, which makes it all the more fun.
Overall CRACK HOUSE OF THE DEAD isn’t going to win lots of awards, but considering it’s limitations and production values is a half decent watch.