A couple months ago, I watched the movie “Stupid Teenagers Must Die;” a movie that attempted to spoof horror films but failed miserably because it wasn’t funny or scary.
The 2004 film “Dead & Breakfast,” succeeds where that movie failed.
I should mention the only reason I even decided to watch Dead & Breakfast was the fact it had David Carradine in it. Given the fact the actor recently died under some unusual circumstances, I figured I owed it to myself to watch at least one movie he had a role in (I’m too young to remember Kung Fu).
As it turns out, Carradine has a very small role in this movie. His character is dead from a heart attack a few minutes into it (I’m still not sure why he had a stunt person). But, the movie still turned out to be a very memorable film because you had a light-hearted approach to horror/zombie flicks that was both funny and exciting to watch.
The main plot is pretty much like every other horror film you might watch. You have six friends (including Carradine’s niece, Ever) who get lost driving to a wedding and end up spending the night at a bed and breakfast in the small town of Lovelock. They intend to head out the next morning but are forced to stay in town when the inn’s chef (played by Drew Carey Show veteran Diedrich Bader) is stabbed to death in the middle of the night and the owner (David Carradine) dies of a heart attack.
We later learn the bed & breakfast owner, Mr. Wise, dabbled in the occult and was holding his dead infant’s spirit in a special box for luck. When the spirit is accidentally released by one of the friends, it quickly possesses the entire town; turning them into zombies.
The movie is definitely written to be a comedy. You have a sheriff’s deputy named Enus (obviously taken from the Dukes of Hazzard character) and a hall of records clerk who takes her job a little too seriously. The movie also goes out of its way to show ridiculous amounts of blood and gore. And, let’s not forget the scene where the zombies do the “Thriller” dance to a song sung by narrator turned zombie Randall Keith Randall (played by actor/singer Zach Selwyn). If nothing else, the movie is worth watching just for that.
At the same time, however, it actually wasn’t a half bad zombie flick. The heroes have no way of escaping and have to fight with improvised weapons against a small army with an intelligent leader. It’s one of those movies where you don’t know how any of them will escape with their lives. I wouldn’t put it at the same level as Night of the Living Dead but it was still good.
Final opinion: It’s not going to make my list of all time greatest movies. However, it does win a lot of points for creativity.
Rent it, Buy it or Avoid it: Rent it.