Zombi 3 (1988)

Italian zombie madness.
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Zombi 3 AKA Zombie Flesh Eaters 2

Zombi 3 is another instalment of the confusingly titled Zombi movies. Zombi 2, directed by Lucio Fulci, was released under that name due to some cunning marketing to try and cash in on the success of George A. Romero's Dawn of the Dead, which was released in Italy as Zombi although Zombi 2 was not officially a sequel to Dawn of the Dead. Zombi 3 is connected to Zombi 2 only in title and although Lucio Fulci is credited with directing the movie he had to stop part way through production due to illness, which is when Bruno Mattei was left to finish the movie. It is also rumoured that Fulci was quite unimpressed with the script and in all honesty the movie would have been a total disaster without Fulci's input but it is understandable that he wouldn't want to be involved with a poor sequel to one of his well reputed zombie movies. Zombi 3 was released in the UK as Zombie Flesh Eaters 2 to confuse things further.

This movie is often described to be so crap it's a classic which only seems to happen in the world of horror movies. I wouldn't go so far as to say that the movie was crap but I was rather disappointed considering the two directors have some amazing horror movies to their name. There are some classic scenes but on the whole the movie is quite unoriginal.

The storyline follows a rather typical zombie movie plot. A group of terrorists steal an experimental biological weapon from the military, during the escape the canister opens and infects one of the thieves. Against the advice of top scientists the military burn the corpse, the heat mutates the disease and the ashes from the fire infect the surrounding area. The vicinity is quarantined and the population eradicated apart from a few soldiers, some hot chicks, a young couple and a plethora of overactive undead.

The few remaining survivor's paths soon cross and they must escape from the zombie infested area and evade the military to escape with their lives.

The zombie encounters gradually whittle down the number of non-infected humans which is where we see some of the highlights of the movie as Fulci's trademark gore splatters across the screen. As expected from the Italian Horror legend most of the zombies are in quite a state and, although they are a lot more active than the slow moving zombies we expect in this genre of movie, they are all horribly deformed by the ravaging zombie-disease, and the zombies mangle the survivors pretty bad before they are turned into undead-bits-of-people. The zombie highlights of the movie must be the legless female in the lake, the self-arm-amputating amputee and the flying animated head (maybe?).

This movie is definitely unoriginal and borrows a number of concepts from other zombie movies but the stolen notions are just rammed into the storyline rather than being part of the plot. Within minutes of the outbreak of the infection, numerous zombies have positioned themselves in strategic places and await and un-undead to come past, typical zombie hang-outs are in shrubbery, swimming pools, fridges and under piles of hay. I'm assuming that zombies find comfort in these kind of areas as I can see no other reason why they would be there.

The political-preachy part of the movie is provided by radio DJ Blue Heart who gives a narration through the movie with "don't tamper with nature" messages very reminiscent of Mattei's Hell of the Living Dead.

This is not a terrible movie and is definitely worth a watch by hardcore fans of Italian Horror if only for the gore scenes, the acting is typically overacted and badly timed, the script is fairly dire and the storyline is weak, although the ending is one that will appeal to horror fans even if it is a bit over-dramatized and not explained particularly well.
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Categories: Italian Horror Movies

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