Thursday 30 August 2012

Review: Outpost II: Black Sun (2012)

The original was a surprisingly good and gruesome nazi zombie movie, a genre where low expectations are a given. Outpost II: Black Sun doesn't rise above them.

The first film saw a team of mercenaries enter a haunted house (bunker) and rouse slobbering Nazi zombies from their extra-dimensional slumber. Or something. Mayhem and slaughter ensued. Created by quantum field experiments at the end of World War II, the zombies were not only unkillable, but could slip in and out of reality at whim. Effectively they could teleport. Doesn't make much sense, but neither does quantum physics. Unfortunately, that feature undermines the drama, as it makes it difficult for the heroes to take effective action.

This time round the zombies don't flit about subspace, and screenwriter/director Steve Barker adds ways to permanently kill them. Like that. Adds spice.

The film begins the same way as the last, with a doomed team of mercenaries entering the dread bunker. While their employer watches via webcam, the soldiers piss of the undead National Socialists and get ripped to pieces. To be perfectly honest, I'm not sure how ideological these drooling horrors really are. They just like killing people. Once riled, they go about it with great zeal.

The stakes are raised as the roaming area of the zombie storm-troopers increases exponentially, threatening the entire region.

Nazi-hunter Helen (Catherine Steadman), hunting the mad scientist Klausener, hitches a ride into the maelstrom with action hero physicist Wallace (Richard Coyle), a kind of Indiana Jones meets Stephen Hawking. Inevitably they team up with a group of mercenary cannon fodder and work their way towards the bunker. Throw a stick in the Balkans and you'll hit a mercenary. Good to know.

The climax seems like a parody, and the lightning effects that accompany it are subpar, which doesn't help.

Still, the Outpost series remains far above anything else in this cheesy, guilty pleasure genre.

They're already at work on Outpost III. Let's hope the third one is the charm.

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