Running Time: 1hr 21min Directed by: Max Groah Written by: Max Groah Tim Mayo Produced by: Tiffany Arnold Darell Day Max Groah Tim Mayo Vincent J Restivo
The title alone is hilarious and I kind of knew right away what I was in for. Some scenes were very funny and worked really well, because of the mix between the attack of the zombies and the friends trying to come up with plans while being stoned. I also really liked how they cut from present time to the past, because it got me more invested in the characters. Even though most of the dialogue was funny, some of the dialogue needed some more work. The acting ranged from good to bad, but never so bad that it distracted from the film. I got what I expected from Bong of the Living Dead, and I really did enjoy watching it!
I think this would have worked better as a short film. For a stoner horror-comedy with a premise that should be delivering in the laughs department, it was unfortunately pretty dry, with a pace that felt plodding and uneven. I'm not saying we need a laughs-a-minute rapid fire narrative, but the pulse should be a lot stronger than the one found in the zombies inhabiting the movie. There's also an issue with tone. Bong of the Living Dead kicks things off with a very campy, high-energy introduction that I genuinely enjoyed. I was reminded a bit of some of the Troma films I adore - so, a good start. But as we approach the midway point, the story begins to meander, quickly stumbling into more serious melodrama, and quite honestly, it feels a little bit unearned. We get some glimpses of this motley crew's past, but it isn't enough to feel much of anything once danger is kicked into high gear. A real shame because much of Bong's closing moments are pretty exciting. Had there been more time spent in the past, before the outbreak, and developing these characters and their relationships - the finale would have landed with the impact it intended to.
Let me be clear, I didn't dislike the film, but I wish it better stayed the course, because those were the times when I was having fun. Hopefully the next go round, this production crew takes what they've learned from this - use what works - and create something a little more focused. I'll gladly give it a shot.