Director – Christopher Landon
Cast – Tye Sheridan, Logan Miller, Joey Morgan, Sarah Dumont, David Koechner, Halston Sage, Cloris Leachman, Niki Koss, Hiram A. Murray, Lukas Gage, Patrick Schwarzenegger, Blake Anderson, Missy Martinez
Release Year – 2015
Reviewed by John of the Dead
Zombie films are a dime a dozen these days and have gone the way of the found-footage sub-genre in that the majority of new entries aren’t worth watching. Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse is a flick I wish I had seen sooner, as it is one of the more enjoyable zombie films I have seen in recent time. Giving us boy scouts in a Revenge of the Nerds style zombie flick is an idea I can get behind. Compliment this with loads of deaths, tons of gore, and some truly zany antics I was not expecting (don’t let the boy scouts element fool you into thinking this is an innocent film), and this is an effort I recommend to fans of the zombie sub-genre who want a flick with some “guts”.
For Ben, Carter, and Augie, scouts has consumed their lives for as long as they can remember. As a popular high school party leaves their friendship on the fritz, the three must band together to save their town from a zombie apocalypse.
Confession: I was in Boy Scouts for one year, as a Webelo. It was cool, and I totally could have saved my city from zombies, but these nerds take scouts to supreme levels.
On the eve of their last camp-out, Ben and Carter make the decision to ditch Augie to attend a high school party thrown by Carter’s sister’s boyfriend. Ben has always had the hots for his best friend’s sister, so naturally the invitation carried more importance than spending night with Augie as he receives a special badge. This ultimately leads to the rift between Augie and the other two guys, who definitely have some making up to do if they survive the impending chaos that night.
Things kick off quickly, with the opening sequence giving us a gory taste of what to expect. The four credited writers, which includes director Christopher Landon (he wrote Disturbia, Blood and Chocolate, and Paranormal Activity II/III/IV/V) waste little time in giving us living dead action, adorning the first act with touches of zombie action. From patient zero to some undead wild game, the first act aims to kick viewers in the face until the horror fully manifests at the 32-minute mark. From then on out we watch as the town’s population is decimated by the hoards of the living dead. Their only hope lies with the three scouts and a badass cocktail waitress from a nearby strip club. I hope you are in the mood for some zombie tits too, courtesy of adult film star Missy Martinez.
The writers do a great job in the character play between the characters. The three scout leads will leave you wondering what you would do in such a situation with your friends, and the strong female lead completes them. Ultimately, the selling point in the carnage written into the film. These writers leave few holds barred, with zombie penises, zombie cunnilingus, and zombie cats gracing the screen. Surprisingly, these antics are executed very well and don’t detract from the film – they compliment it. The overall story is a simple one. It’s about surviving and saving a lifelong friendship.
Director Christopher Landon (Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones) does a fantastic job here and I credit the direction with my enjoyment of this piece. The story has some zany scenes that would have turned me away had they been executed stupidly. Instead, we are treated to full-frontal action, plenty of gore, and locations that will suck you in, whether it be in a strip club, police station, the woods, or an underground party. The acting performances are fun, with Joey Morgan stealing the show as Augie in his film debut You feel for the guy, and his numerous instances of narrowly escaping death will leave you rooting for him ever more. As far as the zombies go I enjoyed the look. They come in all shapes and sizes and they are beyond hungry, leading to a kill count of over 100.
Overall, Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse is a fun effort sure to please fans of the zombie sub-genre. Check it out.