Movie Review-The Dead Inside

Coming to dvd soon from Monarch Home Video

Travis Betz follow up to Lo, is an interesting take on the zombie genre. The film revolves two people Wes and Fi, Wes is a photographer who pays the bills by shooting weddings and Fi is a writer who is writing some zombie novels titled The Dead Survive. It seems like Fi is becoming schizophrenic and Wes does all he can to help her get better. Wes thinks his only solution is to imprison his girlfriend till he can figure out what to do with this person who looks like Fi but is not. While you hear the title of the film and the reference to zombies, this is not a horror film. This film comes across as a dramady, and a musical. If you are familiar with Lo, you know Betz is not a traditional director that he dips into every genre almost for every scene. The script and acting in this film were ok, but I felt at 97 minutes this film may be a stretch for some. The little bit of zombie scenes were funny at moments, but almost come with some kind of bittersweet sadness. Like a tragic love story, that death was not the love’s finale that it carried over to the afterlife.

This film has a lot of musical numbers and for the most part, all the music in the film was fun. Sarah Lassez who plays Fi, when she sings almost comes across as a Sarah Brightman meets PJ Harvey. She really caries the musical numbers and does a great job. Dustin Fasching who plays Wes, also does a great job with the singing material. They were the only two stars of this film. This story felt like a play more than a film. Like each act had a musical number and then key back to the story of the two lovers trying to cope in a world that they are all alone. The actors also play the two zombies in this film as well.

This film is very creative and very well thought out. The Dead Inside is not a film that is easy to classify in a genre, and I think horror fans could be very letdown by this film, because I am not sure if they are ready for a romantic doomed couple musical. Who knows maybe they are? I think Betz is a director that seems to dance to the beat of his own drummer, and this film is clearly proof of that. My big problem with this film, I felt like the concept is solid but not solid for a full length film. It seemed as this film was getting towards the last half of the film, is when it went on cruise control and was searching for creative ideas to keep the viewer interested. This film is basically two people sitting around and starring into things like a computer screen and a mirror and singing or talking just nonstop.

I won’t say I hated this film because I did enjoy so much about this film till the half way mark; after the half way mark the film was still watchable but it just felt the film was too ambitious even for Betz own good. Though, the final shot of this film was really something to make you happy you stuck it out. I think if this film was an hour long, it would have been reviewed higher than it will be. This film would be a great film to take a date that is not really a horror fan to see I think, it is better than the latest Julia Roberts cry fest for sure. It has such sadness in the material that I think the comedic touches really worked; the musical numbers were really a nice touch as well. I think Betz is a great director who sometimes swims against the tide in terms of what he is trying to create. I think if this film had trimmed some of the scenes a little, it would have had more of a impact.

7 out of 10