Dead Rising: Watchtower review

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When I first heard that there was going to be a Dead Rising digital film based on Capcom’s popular zombie-filled video game that’s being produced by Legendary Entertainment, I squealed in delight. Dead Rising: Watchtower is based on the Dead Rising video game series which has sold over 7.6 million copies and will be available for streaming on Crackle in its feature form on March, 27, 2015.

The film follows Jesse Metcalfe as Chase Carter (who we haven’t seen in the games), a reporter who is trying to gain infamy by going head first into a quarantine zone filled with zombies. Finding that he has bitten off more than he can chew, Chase joins forces with two women who prove themselves to be scarier than the zombies. Crystal (Meghan Ory) and Maggie (Virginia Madsen) both have something to lose, and without giving too much away, I will say that Maggie was once a mother until this outbreak. These survivors work together fighting zombie clowns, hordes, biker gangs, and a crazy pyromaniac using only their wit, and of course a few makeshift zombie-slaying weapons.

Dead Rising

Meanwhile, there’s a news coverage following the outbreak that features a special guest who has survived a similar zombie outbreak. He’s Frank West (Rob Riggle) from the first Dead Rising game, and he has become famous after his best-selling book about surviving his zombie experience. We see him presented throughout the film making commentary about the ongoing situation, blaming government conspiracies which may hold out to be true, and he does it all in a comedic and pessimistic fashion, providing some humor to this film.

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There were two scenes that I considered to be awesome and the most memorable. First we see a dad with his baby strapped to his chest, but unfortunately this dad has turned. And the baby? Well let’s just say a free meal has presented itself. Secondly, there was an awesome single-shot scene where Chase is trying to escape a large horde, use his make-shift weapons, and run while the camera follows him as he fights, jumps, and goes into a bus only to end up face to face with a rather large zombie clown. That scene made me feel as if I was in the film watching and felt very reminiscent of the big comic book scenes in films by Mark Millar.

Dead Rising

The film itself is no Forward Unto Dawn, but it definitely has many strong points that keep it interesting and relevant to video game fans. There are a few areas that need improvement. The first half of the film seemed to drag, which might not entice people to stick around. It seemed like a Syfy film with cheesy music, which set the tone of the film completely off. Metcalf and the other actors in the film are way too talented to have music of that caliber, and it upset me since you hear the same music that made Sharknado’s soundtrack sound like it was scored by John Williams. But again the film wasn’t bad at all and even paid homage to the game by including gameplay from Dead Rising during a scene with the crazy biker gang.

Rating: 3/5 Atoms

NR 3 Atoms - C


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