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American Zombie (2008)

John Durbin , Paul Eiding , Grace Lee  |  Unrated |  DVD
3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: John Durbin, Paul Eiding, Jesse D. Goins, Raymond Ma, Lorna Scott
  • Directors: Grace Lee
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Cinema Libre
  • DVD Release Date: July 8, 2008
  • Run Time: 91 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001A5070M
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #286,421 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "American Zombie" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Filmmakers Grace Lee ( The Grace Lee Project ) and John Solomon ( Nonsense Man ) team up to shoot a documentary about high-functioning zombies living in Los Angeles and their struggles to gain acceptance in human society.Despite their wildly different working styles Grace and John manage to chronicle the hopes and dreams of four fascinating subjects: IVAN a convenience-store clerk who longs for a career in publishing; LISA a florist trying to recover her lost memories; JUDY a hopeless romantic who learns to accept her true nature; and JOEL (pronounced Yo-El ) a committed political activist striving for zombie rights. As Grace strives to get to know the zombies on their own terms John is eager to uncover their darker side and rallies to get the crew permission to shoot at a three-day zombies-only retreat called Live Dead where the documentary takes an unexpected and dangerous turn. What transpires there is beyond anything the filmmakers could imagine as they are forced to re-evaluate their ideas about tolerance identity politics and the future of the human race.Format: DVD MOVIE Genre: HORROR/COMEDIC HORROR UPC: 881394105027 Manufacturer No: CLS1050

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One Of The Best Zombie Movies In The Genre October 6, 2008
By Steech
At this point as a society, we've coupled zombies and comedy. I'm sure there are a myriad of compelling psychological reasons why this is so. But whatever our complex need to attach comedic value to something as existentially horrifying as reanimated corpses, it manifests itself in an equally complex milieu. The zombie/comedy dyad operates within a very wide spectrum. Zombie movies can be hilariously funny, a la Sean of the Dead, or stark and terrifying, as in the original Night of the Living Dead (which uses only a sprinkling of comedy to balance the effect).

I think the other reviewers may have expected this movie to be a lot more screwball than it was. The fact that it wasn't doesn't constitute a failure. The slapstick zombie movie is only one type of a surprisingly complex subgenre of cinema. And this ain't it.

American Zombie asks viewers to suspend disbelief to its very limits, and assume that zombies are both real and that they are deserving of deeper consideration. For anyone who ever spent more than an hour in discussion of zombie physiology, cause, and social consequence, this movie is like candy.

The movie (which is conducted like a documentary) follows four "high-functioning" zombies living (also dating, consuming, and working) among regular humans in Los Angeles. Each subject has his or her own take on his unique "condition."

The general feeling of the film is the same as that of a documentary following people diagnosed with an untreatable medical condition. Ivan begins with the statement (paraphrased), "I don't know how long it will be before my body decomposes, so I'm living each day at a time.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A film with a very narrow audience March 26, 2009
I think the number of people that fall into the target audience for this film is really, really small.

First off, let me say that it is a very well made film, a very slick production that captures the feel of a documentary exceptionally well (as I suppose it should, since Grace Lee apparently makes documentaries). I also think the concept of the film is very clever (that zombies live among us, but they're just another misunderstood and downtrodden subclass...or are they?).

Having said that, it's kind of an odd mix of styles and I'm not sure who will ultimately enjoy the film. I'm not sure how many people who are attracted to the zombie film genre will also be interested in a film which is at its heart a media and identity politics satire. And I'm not sure how many people looking for a media satire will be interested in the zombie subject matter.

I see there is a bit of a debate raging as to what this film actually is: mockumentary, faux documentary, horror movie, etc. I don't really know what the difference between a mockumentary and a faux documentary is. If the difference is that mockumentaries are comedies and faux documentaries are not necessarily comedies, I have to say I think this is intended to be primarily a comedy (or at least, as I said, satire...and my understanding of satire is that it's generally intended to be funny). True, it's a relatively dark and low key comedy, but still a comedy.

Part of the film's problem may be how it is promoted (to the limited extent that it has been promoted); the Netflix capsule review of American Zombie opens: "Part mockumentary, part unabashed gore-fest...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars CLEVER, ORIGINAL, AND BAD July 19, 2010
This is a mockumentary on the zombie community. In many ways it is a parody on the gay community. Unfortunately in order to capture the feel of a real documentary, the movie is very boring.

The low budget made for very few special effects or zombie make-up. The zombies they follow live boring if not pathetic lives. The real action in the movie starts at a festival called "live dead" which reminded me of a Grateful Dead parking lot. At this point the movie is well past the half way point. Feel free to tell people the surprise ending.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent in every way November 28, 2008
An excellent, intellectually stimulating film, much needed in a sub genre full of dross. It engages on many levels and you can really get into the people they meet, they are very interesting.

This is a film that starts light and fluffy, even funny and amusing in places then by the end is deadly serious, those sweet friendly zombies are suddenly clearly as sweet and friendly as a rabid rottweiler. It scared the pants off me and made me worried about the topic - one that doesn't even exist!! Excellent effort. Especially the closing scene.

The one star review here on the page by another reviewer is undeserved. Mockumentaries are not always comedies and don't have to be comedies. They can be comedirs (e.g. Spinal Tap and the other reviewer mentions Zelig) but they can also be deadly serious. There are many serious examples (like the recent post apocalyptic one set in San Francisco- "Ever Since the World Ended").
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4.0 out of 5 stars Oddly addicting December 6, 2012
Scary? No - fake documentary, yes. Take the assumption that zombies, from low function and almost feral, to high function that can almost pass --and a movie idea, is born (or unborn, as it may be). First, you really gotta like what they call Mockumentary just for the twist they have fun putting on a thing like that, and I do. I liked it, good plot out and nicely set up, I felt well and realistically acted - and I will pop it in from time to time and find it a nice way to kill a few hours and still keeps me entertained. One of the nice things about the expanding Independant film world is that you get these little oddities, that you will find faves, and they will just stick with you.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Every genre seems to try this format...meh.
This is one of those "documentary" ideas where zombies are real...and cognizant. The premise is so-so (coming from a big zombie fan) but tries to get a bit deep and feels like a... Read more
Published 21 months ago by TW Brown, Author, Editor, and Reviewer
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting mash up of Zombie films and Documentaries
Due to the social commentary so easily found within movies about zombies as well as budget restraints as the undead are such an easy 'monster' to create the whole 'shaky cam' or... Read more
Published on September 30, 2012 by Amazon Customer
3.0 out of 5 stars i liked it.
I found it to be a creative interesting concept. i just feel that such a unique plot shouldve been pushed much further than the subtle direction it took. Read more
Published on August 19, 2011 by kaoskitty
2.0 out of 5 stars This is not a Zombie Movie.....
This is a movie about zombies. There is nothing in this film that remotely relates to the genre with the exception of the last 15 minutes. Read more
Published on June 7, 2011 by ZombiEFAN
5.0 out of 5 stars Comedy/horror/documentary with an ending that you will not see coming
American Zombie is a mock documentary that chronicles the lives of four zombies living in Los Angeles. On one level, the movie is a comedy. Read more
Published on June 7, 2011 by Robert J. Ruhf
5.0 out of 5 stars Original concept
hard to find anything original with zombies but this one finds higher ground. A mocumentary, two very different indi film makers decide to do a study on the zombie population... Read more
Published on April 15, 2011 by Patricia P. Surrey
1.0 out of 5 stars The most BORING "zombie" movie on the face of the planet.
This movie was god-awfully boring and pointless. Where's the gut-munching, society-ending horror that's supposed to accompany zombie movies? Read more
Published on June 19, 2010 by Michael Gmirkin
1.0 out of 5 stars Terrible zombie flick cheap
I cant believe they even made this ridiculous movie. It looks like they made it with a home camera. The acting is amateurish and the story is just plain silly. Read more
Published on January 30, 2010 by bbrockRailFan
3.0 out of 5 stars The Marginalized Undead
If there isn't one already, then soon there will probably be a pop culture thesis or dissertation to explain or at least examine the explosion of Zombie films in the last decade. Read more
Published on December 16, 2009 by Bryan Byrd
3.0 out of 5 stars Don't wanna be an American living dead...
American Zombie (Grace Lee, 2007)

Grace Lee (The Grace Lee Project) directs this mockumentary set in an alternate Los Angeles where the living dead are peacefully... Read more
Published on June 26, 2009 by Robert Beveridge
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