Haiku Revu: Outpost - Black Sun
12 May 2013 - Nic Ho Chee
My haiku review of Outpost - Black Sun:
If zombie nazis,
Are nuked from orbit, would we
Notice or feign care?
At the end of the Second World War Klausner a Nazi scientist perfected a process which would transport soldiers into a strange nether realm creating an immortal zombie army to crush the Allied forces. For some reason this never happened then, but following the events of the previous film the freshly reanimated force is working its way through Eastern Europe killing everything in its wake. In the midst of this horror, a lone reporter and a seasoned investigator join up with a British special forces unit finding themselves behind enemy lines, their mission; deliver a destructive package to the source of the evil and prevent the death of all humanity.
We managed to catch this flick during the Saturday programming of Frightfest 2012 and were hoping for something that improved on the first Outpost, a solid low budget film released back in 2008. This one felt like a step backwards, lacked any real tension and overused a set of tired monster tropes with ineffectual snarling zombies and a cackling Nazi undead hag. The story didn't make a whole lot of sense; why didn't they just send in paratroopers, or a string of electro magnetic pulse warheads, or short out the electrics in the bunker using any one of a myriad means, or why were the zombies running after the soldiers when they could phase in and out of reality? It looked like they had become the equivalent of a small band of Zombie Santa Clauses having to personally visit everyone in their zone of influence to introduce them to a short and stabby death. They got around this to some extent by having the evil scientist repurposing the dead to further his nefarious schemes, but then even that suggested that it would take some time for this to happen and could at any point be stopped by a battlefield nuke delivered to an area which the zombies had conscientiously cleared of humanity rendering nil the possibility of collateral damage.
The film wasn't completely without merit, with some decent actors including Richard Coyle and Clive Russell who made what we saw palatable at some level. Inevitably given the script the female lead Catherine Steadman appeared to be pouting her way through a series of uninteresting non-events, which served to move the story like a jerky robot on a unicycle to its eventual unsatisfying end. For all the pomp and fire not a lot actually happened in the film, and to quote a fellow cinema-goer, "all I remember was a girl, wandering around and talking a bit."
Very disappointed with the film, would suggest you avoid and watch Dead Snow instead. I'm giving this an I-almost-didn't-write-the-review-as-it-was-that-disappointing one thumb down.