Unfinished Business: Review for Ash vs Evil Dead 304

Unfinished Business:
Review for Ash vs Evil Dead 304
by A. Zombie

Whoa, pal. Watch out for episode spoilers below.

Now may not be the right time for Ash to go on some weird bonding trip with Brock, but it’s happening. The duo vanish from Ash’s house in the midst of bagging parts from the reanimated body pretending to be Brock, but wasn’t Brock because Brock’s ghost has no idea Brandy exists until Ash vent-rambles to his father. Are you confused yet? Welcome to the Evil Dead fandom, we subsist solely on confusion and fake blood.

Ghost Brock and Ash hop back to 2012 via the elder’s memories. Back when Ash’s interests include laying low and not much else, Brock has a visitor insisting he must speak to the savior. The adamant Knight of Sumeria has the missing Necronomicon pages which he must give to Ash. Brock’s having none of it, telling the guy to get going and that Ash wants nothing to do with the demon stuff, it’s already ruined his life quite enough. In typical Williams fashion, Brock opts to nut-shot the Knight instead of escorting him from the hardware store. Which is how Brock winds up with a dead man in his cellar. This guy just boards up the door, locks the building, and never turns back. This family doesn’t know how to deal with anything. Lock up a dead Knight, who isn’t actually dead by the way. Leave Cheryl’s room untouched like some weird shrine. Ash can’t even deal with Evil the right way, constantly butting heads with anyone who shows him which path to take. If coping skills were oxygen, they would’ve asphyxiated long ago.

On the bright side, since the Knight is still in the basement, that means Ash just has to break into his own cellar and pickpocket a corpse. And fight an evil wall painting with what appears to be a mystical television of sorts showing Brandy’s friend in distress. Or as we call it, just another day at Ashy Slashy’s Hardware Store and Emporium.

On the flipside, the mayhem in the basement sends the Necronomicon into fits. Ruby arrives home in time to receive a warning from a servant to The Dark Ones. That thing in the basement? It’s a portal, and The Dark Ones are about to use it to make their way to this realm. The only Knight Ruby knows about is Dalton. He’s still reenacting Vlad the Impaler’s greatest hits, so Ruby jaunts over to the cabin for a little chat. Dalton’s not the one who triggers the portal, of course. In a bid to still appear powerful, the fool brags about finding the dagger. We don’t have to worry about that problem again, before Ruby’s spell to push back Evil broke, Dalton blows off his head.

Kelly’s in more danger now, and the punches just keep coming. It doesn’t take long to figure out where Pablo went after running down Dalton. With Brandy tagging along to keep her safe, Kelly’s truck is rammed by deadite Pablo on a motorcycle. He’s intent on dragging Brandy through the windshield. By some miracle, the ladies fight him off long enough to get back to Ash’s. Kelly takes a bite to the leg, but it doesn’t stop her from wanting to capture and cure Pablo. I’m not so sure her feelings will be the same after the bite on her leg transforms into Pablo’s mouth.

The good thing to come out of Ash’s trip down memory lane with his father is Brock knows every woman in Elk Grove. When Ash needs to find Ruby’s new place, it takes Brock all of a second to think up the location for the real Ms. Prevett’s house. The woman Ash seeks isn’t home. He does find unfortunate hitchhiker Natalie upstairs handcuffed to a sink. She’s singing to a baby way, way older than what we saw in the last episode, but just as terrifying. Being who he is, Ash assumes he can just chainsaw his way through the handcuffs, not fully comprehending why Natalie keeps gesturing for him to be quiet. When he finally gets the gist, his robo-hand shorts out, leaving he and Natalie attached to the sink, facing off with a shrieking hellspawn. Ain’t fatherhood grand?

The downside to the short episodes is when the action gets going, I get greedy and want more right away. This episode leaves every plot thread except Brock’s flapping in the wind. Waiting a week to find out what happens is cruel, but this show’s magic would be lost if they had extended episodes. Admitting the truth doesn’t mean I have to like it, though.

Review – Battle: Los Angeles

What would happen if an alien force invaded Earth? If Battle: Los Angeles is even 75% correct, put me out of my misery before they get further than the beach.

As far as film openings go, typically war footage gets some yawns and expectant foot tapping. However, given the conflicts and recent disasters the audience was rapt. Silent. Dare I even say, thoughtful? This film comes about at a very strange time in the world’s history and hands us a look at war on the home front.

Right away, we’re driven to like the platoon of marines. They are funny, and I’m not saying this because ZSC’s own Neil Brown Jr. delivered some of the most amusing lines. The cast they put together for the film is astounding. Their performances make Battle: Los Angeles work. Without an emotional connection to the characters it’s just another alien shoot-em-up movie.

The most difficult parts of the film aren’t scenes where they show civilian casualties, though they are striking. No, what caught me was moments where, alongside the marines, we see the full scope of the damage to the city unfold. It became a macabre beauty of sorts painted in fire and smoke. Landscapes most city dwellers take for granted are leveled in no time at all.

During combat scenes the audience is put in the middle of the action. They’re “grab you by the gonads” intense, but a little confusing. The pacing of the movie hits hard then backs off to allow us to regroup and figure out what the heck just happened. It literally became an edge of your seat watch for us.

Battle: Los Angeles works hard to show how combat can mess with a person’s head. There are moments when we forgot the aliens outside because the marines dive so deep into their own issues. Only once did I feel the attention to their mental plight took from the movie itself. However, with the way the film is shot the audience gets a really good grasp of what happens to people during war. It’s not all physical damage out on the battlefield.

Holy S#!% moments that ZSC members should look out for in order to learn new battle techniques? How to quickly discover the enemy’s weakness. A unique way to dispatch a rather large enemy combatant. (A technique this commander will utilize should I ever be surrounded by zombies) Oh and what happens when a tough as nails female is injured.

Go out and see this film. It is a heck of a ride.

Don’t forget, our Battle: Los Angeles photo contest runs until 11:59 PM PST on 3-25-2011. All you have to do is snap a picture of yourself with your Battle: Los Angeles ticket stub at the movie theater and email it to command [at] zombiesurvivalcrew [dot] com (please see contest blog for complete rules and regulations).

First ten entries will receive an official ZSC bumper sticker. All entries will be put into a drawing for a secret prize from Neil Brown Jr.