Awaken the Dead
A priest with a troubled past and an assassin's daughter find themselves trapped in a house surrounded by the undead. As they battle each other and the walking dead, the secret threads of their past lives bind them together in a web of conspiracy and death. Their only hope for survival lies in facing their greatest fears and their darkest secrets. In a world ruled by betrayal, the real monsters may not be outside. Redemption comes with a price.
Jeff Brookshire is a genius!" --Best-Horror-Movies.com
It's a worthy addition to any zombie fan's collection and horror fan's attention. --JoeHorror.com
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Top customer reviews
I suppose if the story started out with the population struck by severe tunnel vision it would be worth one star.
It is almost as if someone wrote a story and the producer/director of this movie deliberately tried to sabotage it.
Rife with unrealistic characters;
A Jehovah Witness that would pretend to strike an unwary person in the head with a baseball bat as a fun gesture.
A drunken priest with a 2 foot long black cross tattooed on his back.
The red letters without a messenger.
A reluctant prostitute that could have been teetering on agoraphobia. ( another ball dropped)
None of the zombies were brought out as a foremost character.
This is too far away removed from classic suspense, horror, logic and character representation to be of any value.
1) ACTING: For a low budget, no-name indie production, the acting was pretty good. The three main characters seemed very real to me and the script seem to flesh out their characters. There were, of course, the usual hit and misses when it comes to indie productions and quality actors, but nothing that really distracted me from the film.
2) PRODUCTION: The script, I felt, was pretty strong. There were many plot lines going, and luckily for the viewer, they are all wrapped up at the end. A number of scenes were filmed with that grainy texture look which I personally do not care for, but to each his own. There was an original score by an actual band! How unusual for an indie! Normally, we, the viewers get some heavy metal music blaring through certain scenes, and this was a nice change of pace. I did have an issue with the sound. While viewing this movie, I was constantly adjusting the volume up and down. At times, I could hardly hear the actors, and then suddenly ZOMBIE ATTACK! and I was blown out of my chair. The zombie make up and gore was pretty good, but I felt, it could have /should have been more.
3) THE ZOMBIES: Really nothing new brought to the zombie genre here.
4) THE CAUSE: Experimental virus that transforms the living into the living dead.
5) NUDITY: None.
Overall, I feel that this was a pretty good entry for the low budget indie scene. Normally, we get the usual "Zombies attack, the heroes fight to survive, and maybe, it's over." This movie had a lot plot to keep you, the viewer interested in the movie. Is this movie top of the line, top notch zombie fare? No, there are a few problems, but nothing too extreme to take away from the viewer being entertained by this movie. And, it is WAY above the usual low budget indie crap that is normally pushed on us, the zombie genre's biggest fans.
RATING: 3 out of 5
With Indie productions, I lower my expectations and do my best to forgive flaws... whether they be special effects, technical, script or acting. Bringing any movie to fruition (even a poor one) requires effort, resources, vision and guts. In that vein, I hope the folks behind this movie learn from the experience and develop more worthwhile offerings. For example, a low-budget zombie movie that delivered was Exit Humanity: A Zombie Saga. I have no problem recommending that one to fans of the zombie genre. An example in the vampire/zombie crossover field would be Stake Land... again, a decent romp for the price.
So, back to Awaken the Dead... the film technique was annoyingly grainy, monochromatic and video-like. Since Blair Witch, the "realistic" style of filming has gained popularity, but it's definitely hit or miss on the viewer. This was not a handheld camcorder as in Blair Witch, but it didn't feel far off that mark. While the three main characters had varying levels of acting talent (I enjoyed odd moments of good performance from Gary Kohn as the conflicted Priest and Nate Witty as the naïve Jehovah's Witness), they were unable to rise above their flawed surroundings. Similarly, the plot had potential in the early going, but rapidly died in cliché Hell... and don't get me started on the bad zombie make-up/action effects.
There are probably those among you that love the zombie category enough to view every single movie, no matter how painful. Fair enough, have at it... and of course, opinions do vary, so perhaps there are also adventurous viewers who would be more forgiving than my take.
On my Indie rating scale this one gets 1.5 stars...