“Eat Me Fuckers”
The French have done it again. La Horde is the best traditional zombie movie to have been released in years. Forget the frankly awful Resident Evil series, the heavily flawed & ultimately disappointing 28 Days Later & George Romero’s last three undead films, La Horde is what any serious zombie movie should be. Directors Benjamin Rocher & Yannick Dahan have delivered an old style zombie movie, with enough modern touches & nuances to make it relevent & more importantly one hell of a great movie.
Borrowing elements from movies as diverse as Dawn of The Dead through to Assault On Precinct 13, La Horde begins with an unofficial Police raid on an urban high-rise, where notorious drug dealer Adewele is holed up with his brother & gang. The police want vengeance on him for killing one of their collegues. The raid fails & the police are taken prisoner by the gang. But before the gang can act against their prisoners they are confronted with a new enemy, the zombie apocalypse has started & the tower block is besieged by zombies. An uneasy alliance is formed between cops & bad guys in the interests of survival, but there are descenting voices in both camps & tensions within the group are never far from boiling point as the group try to make it to street level.
Rocher & Dahan have succeeded where so many have failed in recent years, they have made a truly great zombie movie. Maybe only Zach Snyder’s surprisingly excellent remake of Dawn Of The Dead can also claim that crown. I know there have been some wonderful zombie comedies like Shaun Of The Dead, Dead Snow & Zombieland, but I’m talking serious, end of the world walking dead apocalypse here. The acting is first-rate, it’s an ensemble piece that has no real “good guys” The drug gang are truly vile, violent human beings but the police are also not without their own prejudices & agendas. The characters are well-developed & fleshed out (no pun intended) But it’s the pacing of the movie that is most impressive here. In the early scenes there is a real air of apprehension & tension built up as the dead are glimpsed fleetingly & ominously. It is once the first zombie attack happens, that the film really picks up pace, changing from an atmospheric horror to a rollercoaster battle for survival. It is also a film that in which it is very difficult to guess who will live & who will die, which is most refreshing.
In closing La Horde is a wonderful zombie movie that deserves your attention. More proof, if it were needed that, as far as horror goes the French are currently leading the way. Highly recommended.