*** SPOILERS ***
So after a couple of Argento weeks, I was relatively pleased to have a Fulci offering this week. I didn't know a great deal about Fulci before starting 'The Nasties' and was pleasantly surprised with what I have watched so far. So what about 'City of the living dead'?
This movie rang bells with me and I wasn't sure why... then I remembered. This was a movie my husband (a BIG zombie fan) had watched many years ago and the memory got lost in the recesses of time. In more recent years, he was reading an online review which listed it as one of the greatest zombie movies of all time. Of course he had to go out and buy a copy. That was where my memory came from. He watched it and was mightilly disappointed with the outcome. This is from a man who has probably seen most zombie movies out there.
Our very basic premis starts with a pirest committing suicide and in the process opening the gates to hell where dead residents of a town called Dunwich reanimate and set about killing everyone in sight. We have a medium called Mary, who supposedly 'dies' at the start of the movie out of sheer fright when we see's the situation surrounding our priest. She is buried alive and when she comes to, she is rescued by a reported called Peter. They set off to Dunwich to attempt to save the world from the ensuing madness....
Sooo what did I think? Well there was a 'feeling' to the movie that I liked, which Fulci always manages to create. I liked the special effects (although you have to allow for its time). We have vomitting entrails, bleeding eyeballs (I particularly like this one), crusty zombies and a horrific drill death. The zombies in this one are very different to the normal shuffling, moronic ones. These ones are smart and can even teleport! You think they're far away and KABOOM, there they are, right in front of you. Jumpy!!! They also look different, more like burns victims I thought. It's nice to sometimes see different interpretations of the living dead.
The ending of this movie completely confused me. It seems I wasn't alone in this as I scoured the internet trying in vain to make sense of what happened. A young boy who survives the whole ordeal runs happilly towards Mary and Peter who have successfully managed to save the world, arms outstretched and smiling. Mary looks horrified and starts screaming? Mostly people seem to think the boy has been possessed by the spirit of our priest or is to become a zombie. I myself have no idea. It seemed to me they weren't sure how to end it so just stopped and left it wide open to interpretation. A bit disappointing I thought. I don't need it spelt out to me, but HANG ON!!!
So, gore -good, eerie feel - good, main characters - good, effects - good, storyline - hmmmmm... I feel this lets us down a bit. Sadly as I felt this movie drags a lot and you're watching a lot of very tiresome guff to get to the good bits, I can't give this one a recommended tag. I definately wouldn't give it an avoid though as it doesn't deserve it.
An ok watch, not going to trouble your brain but a high risk of sending you to sleep if you're feeling a bit tired.