Film Review: Doomed to Consume (2006)

SYNOPSIS:

A small Mid-western town is thrust into chaos after an airborne virus swiftly turns most of the locals into raving mad zombies with an insatiable hunger for the living! Caught amidst the epidemic is an eclectic group of survivors who’ve been hiding out in a ram- shackled farmhouse. Now running low on food, water and vital ammunition to keep the growing number of living dead at bay, they pack up their gear and set out for a better location in hopes of salvation. Will they live to see another day. Or will they too become DOOMED TO CONSUME?

REVIEW:

“Can I ask a stupid question? Was that zombie eating a candy bar?”

Starring:
Nicole Blessing as Tracy Loomis
Douglas Sidney as Jim Williamson
Thomas Altman as Shane Stokes
Don Prentiss as Tyler Stokes
Sonja Beck as Deana Jenkins

Indie moviemakers love zombie movies. Which is somewhat strange as zombie movies need makeup and gore effects which micro-budget movies have in short supply. Simply having extras that shuffle their feet and keep their arms out stretched doesn’t cut the bill. We have seen enough zombie movies to have norms that the fans expect. Not For The Squeamish Productions from Minnesota make a noble effort at a zombie epic with a little budget, some gore and not bad acting.

The movie starts like a video game with the camera being the POV of the lead character as she shoots zombies coming out of the woods at her. Some of the zombies are slow moving but some run towards the camera. It’s an interesting beginning but almost doesn’t fit with the slower moving pace of the rest of the movie. I liked that the movie gave you time to feel the numbness of the main character and that everything didn’t have to be a kill scene. Some of the longer shots may have been for used to pad out the movies’ length but over all it gave it a more thoughtful quality.

Tracy Loomis is a survivor of the zombie plague and wants nothing to do with anyone. Nicole Blessing’s character has a reason to be shut off from the others and we learn more about why she is numb as the movie continues. Having seen many a micro-budget movie it seems at first like she is under acting but the story supports her portrayal. It is an interesting choice of the writer Robbie Ribspreader to keep us at a distance from what is normally the sympathetic heroine. It is the first time I remember a main character really not being happy to find other people who are living. She takes in a girl (Sonja Beck) who lies about being not being inflected and really doesn’t care that much when she has to be killed. Douglas Sidney is the best actor of the group but is given the lines of hope that is pretty much a death sentence in a zombie movie. We would feel cheated if he didn’t end up being toast at some point. Thomas Altman and Don Prentiss play the Stokes’ brothers as two over grown 12 year olds, which at first is annoying but they grow on you. The movie goes south about the point that the brothers make it to their uncle’s house. Doesn’t anyone ever think to yell in a quiet house anyone in here and if no one answers leave fast because no one living is there?

Of course if the characters didn’t explore the old empty house we would end up with more driving scenes. I honestly enjoyed the movie up to the pregnant zombie who gives birth to what can only be called a zombie doll. The scene looks silly and brings the movie down. Even if they had the budget it probably wouldn’t have been a good scene but if you have no money don’t try for the zombie baby effect. The movie ends twice, one being rather ironic but it was almost like the filmmakers backed away from the darkness and ended up putting Nicole Blessing in leather, which is a nice image but really doesn’t add to the movie.

What I liked about the movie:
*The slower pacing of the movie which seems to reveal subjective information about the main character.
* The fact that the filmmakers don’t try for a love story in the midst of zombie attacks.
• The characters are consistent and don’t suddenly change during the movie.
• The scene at the gas station has been done a million times but I like it, it makes me laugh.

What doesn’t work for me:

• The zombie baby.
• The confusing ending with Nicole giving me leather dreams.
• The overly long driving scenes.

I think that we will be seeing more films from NFTS productions and I think they will improve with every film. I for one look forward to seeing what more they can do. Support Independent film makers and give this film a try. Pop up some popcorn, and keep an open mind. I give it 3 stars out of 5. It was released by NFTS Productions and you can find it on their website http://www.nftsproductions.com

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