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on April 19, 2013
After reading the 4 star reviews I figured I'd give this flick at shot. I have to say it was surprisingly better than I thought it would be. The zombies are kind of a mix between the 28 days later drones and the walking dead monsters. They did have a bit of intelligence to them, which definitely lended to the spookiness of them. This isn't exactly a gore fest film. Obviously our heroes do some zombie slaying, but there isn't the mass amounts of blood and guts as in most zombie movies. Instead, the film-maker focuses on the survivors and how they deal. I did like the fact the characters didn't clammer around making all the ridiculous mistakes that most do. They took steps that it seemed like actual people might take in the situation. All in all, it's not the absolute best of the genre, but it's worth a watch.
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on April 23, 2013
Other reviewers said that this movie moved slowly, and they were right. For some reason, though, the movie still worked for me. I guess I was expecting another pseudo-zombie gore-fest, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that this movie did not fall into that category. It was slow but interesting with a couple of decent scares; not brilliantly acted but engaging. If you're not sure what you're in the mood to watch, give this a try. If nothing else, it will help you fall asleep.
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on April 9, 2013
I have to confess: when I first saw the DVD cover for this film, I thought it was going to be a comedy. I'm not sure why, but the expression of the character on the cover gave me the impression that he was in a funny situation. Thus, my expectations weren't very high when I started watching it. But wow...I'm glad I did give it a chance; STATE OF EMERGENCY is a top-notch zombie flick that delivers on many levels.

I had never heard of STATE OF EMERGENCY before I got the press release, but I would wager that horror fans will definitely be hearing about this one soon. While it does not really bring anything new to the table, it is a taut, thrilling survival story that will have you squirming in your seat and hiding your eyes.

One major aspect of this film that jumped out at me is the way it looks. I saw in the closing credits that it was shot on a Red One camera, and you can certainly tell; the picture is crystal clear and the quality of the imagery is beautiful. This clarity lets the audience see every blood-splattered detail of zombie head-shots as they occur.

Aside from the look, STATE OF EMERGENCY is shot well and the acting is great. The production value seems high, which would fit since estimates the budget at $1.3 million. Even so, that's still not much for a movie, and it appears the production team made excellent use of the money they had.

My sole complaint about this film is a very minor one; I don't like the fact that the zombie head-shots were computer generated. Don't get me wrong...they are very well done, but they are still "off" enough to stand out. The rest of the effects are practical, though, and look fantastic.

STATE OF EMERGENCY is a great zombie film, and it will definitely generate buzz in regard to slow-moving-zombies-versus-fast-ones (the creatures in this film run). I highly recommend giving it a shot. It not only looks good, but it's haunting and entertaining as well. The film hits store shelves next week, so make a note.
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on June 26, 2014
Well, it was cheap (I meant inexpensive, really). But it was not the full-bore Zombie flick I was hoping it would be judging by the deceptive DVD cover art. Nor was it even remotely like the synopsis printed on the back cover. There was no "roaming army of flesh-eating zombies." As for "the small band of others," that our lone, so-called hero Jim (Jay Hayden) joins up with, just 3 people in an enormous factory. They do not "fortify their stronghold" against the occasional zombie, they just sit there and yap and bond with one another. Calling this isolated incident an "undead apocalypse" is stretching things mightily. This is zombie-lite. This is amateur theatrics in the same vein as a bunch of kids getting together to put on a show. Sadly, somewhere along the line they forget to invite the zombies.

Yes, it is very stylish looking. But the acting was marginal and the dialog hopelessly prosaic. The FX was sparingly used to some effect. Instead, they relied heavily on the overuse of sound, trying to make every footstep operatic in scope. This is definitely the noisiest suspense thriller I've ever watched. Unfortunately, the pacing was off, there were far too many scenes that involved long static pauses. And with dialog like "I've got a gun and I'm not afraid to use it!" Seriously, who wrote this thing? That would be the executive producer/producer/editor/composer/director Turner Clay.

I will admit that it held my interest, if only to see where they were going with it, but it's not something I would ever want to watch again. This one does not go into my zombie collection.
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on December 9, 2013
This review will contain some spoilers. I'll do my best to keep them to a minimum, but in order to properly review this "zombie" movie, there has to been some specifics.

First off, I wanted to watch this because I'm a huge fan of zombies and the 4th Season of "the Walking Dead" just had its mid-season finale and won't return until Feb 2014, so I thought this movie might hold me over until then. I have to admit, that I'm not really a fan of a fast and athletic zombie variety. I like the more traditional, "Night of the Living Dead" or more currently, "The Walking Dead" type of zombies. The zombies in this film are more like the zombies from "28 Days/Weeks Later". This trend of fast and athletic zombies seems to be the norm these days, so I'll let this one slide, although I REALLY wanted to see the traditional style zombies.

Ok, one of the major problems with this movie is that it is one of those movies that shows you the end of the movie at the beginning and then the rest of the movie is about all the events that led up to that moment. Well this really sucks for a zombie flick, because it GREATLY takes away from the drama. Think about it: if you see all of the characters at the beginning/end, and the entire movie is a flash-back leading up to that point, then what does that tell you about the characters? You already know you don't have to worry about any one of them, because no matter how dicey things seem to get, you know that they simply can't die! This was a huge mistake in my opinion.

Also, let's talk about the cover of the movie, it is highly deceptive. Based on the cover, you'd expect these to be undead zombies, but they aren't. These zombies seem more like regular humans that have lost their mind, and in fact, in one scene, one of these zombies is shown to be clearly speaking (yes, actually talking and carrying on a bit of a conversation!) to the main protagonist. Also, in another scene a "zombie" is shot in the leg and it seemed to clearly respond to the pain. I wouldn't even really call these things zombies in the traditional sense.

Another way that the cover is deceptive is that the main protagonist, Jim, is surrounded by a dozen or so undead zombies... well at no point in this movie do any of the character ever encounter more than one zombie at a time. Basically, this movie's main problem it feels very "safe". At no point are any of the characters really in trouble. And of the times when it may have seem like they could run into trouble, you already know they won't be, again, because this movie is a flash-back leading up to the events you see at the very beginning.

The only redeeming qualities of this movie is that thanks to the awesome cinematography and the decent acting, it doesn't necessarily feel like a low-budget film. But if you're wanting to get your zombie itch scratched, then you'd be better look elsewhere.
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on February 1, 2016
To say this is a BAD movie would be unfair as I'm sure it is low budget. In fact, it HAS to be with the lack of time spent on actually making it a ZOMBIE film. I feel like more effort was gone into promoting the image than actually the film. Look at the cover and see tons of the undead reaching for our hero. In the movie, you are even lucky to get interaction with one zombie at a time. I believe there were 4 total zombies who actually did something the movie. One was within the first 20 minutes or so and after that, it was pretty barren of the undead. The beginning of the movie even lets on that a big encounter will happen from behind a closed door, and when you see it later on play out, it's hardly anything special at all as the door opens. Now, I don't usually complain about a "lack of zombies" but from what this movie seems to promote, it didn't have a whole lot to begin with. Spoilers ahead. The relationship to start off the movie has you not really caring a whole lot, but it dives in deeper as time goes on and you genuinely feel bad about what happened to his girlfriend. That feeling you may feel though is expected to be erased though when our hero meets a new girl and almost suddenly opens up to her. He almost starts to feel deeper than he should for her. This bugs me. The movie is an hour and a half, and not even an hour into the movie, he has already started a potential new love interest. I can't hate the movie as it did have some unique, interesting scenes, but there wasn't enough to give this a FOUR star review. I think 3 stars is even generous.
All in all, the first encounter with a zombie when the main character is alone, is intense and interesting, and the way some zombies TALK is unique, but I feel like there was too much nonsense and little to no action in between. The fact that I refer to the main character as "our hero" can't be good either, as I just watched the movie with no interruptions and I can't even remember his name. If you can get this movie for 5 dollars or less, I'd say it is worth it, but don't pay any more and expect a movie full of zombies.
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on May 24, 2013
I could probably budget this movie, you just need a building, some actors (that will work for free, of course), get a couple of guys to dress like zombies, and throw in some Vietnam footage to set the stage.

What makes most zombie flicks great, is the hoard. The mass of dead humanity coming at you, and there is no place to hide. This movie has none, but then again, these guys have a terrible time handling one zombie at a time. You would also think in this drastic situation, you would always have your weapons ready to go, but not these guys, whenever a zombie comes running at them, they pick up their gun and have to fiddle with it before shooting, but it does make for a more dramatic effect.

Is the movie bad? No. After watching, I was walking around my dimly lit house and felt creepy. So the movie has something going for it, even though I didn't realize it at the time.
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on September 13, 2014
When I review a movie I don't like to be long winded, if to like a good zombie movie in the style of 28 days check it out. I personally don't review movies that suck....but if I do I'll just say"this movie sucks don't bother" but not this one.
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on May 17, 2016
This is really more of a 3 star because the acting was good, story ok, but the pace was really slow, and the cover photo deceptive. There might have been 6 zombies they fought in the entire movie never two at once. So figure it out. Not that action packed. There are a lot more zombies in the cover photo. I don't think two zombies were ever within 1000 yards of each other. It was basically a movie about people waiting.
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on November 2, 2013
Great and times wierd at times. This movie is a decent zombie flick but at the same time it's kind of strange and leaves you thinking what the hell? The zombies behavior is different from most zombie flicks I have seen before, some even talk....again it's wierd at times. Over all a decent flick.
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