Xavierpop Does @TADFilmFest – The Wickedly Funny And Clever ‘Cockneys vs Zombies’ Charms Louis Thoroughly
Cockneys vs Zombies is a wickedly funny and clever addition to the genre. Well crafted with plenty of gore, the horror-comedy stands above other films in its ability to deliver snappy dialogue from well seasoned actors in a tightly edited script. Director Matthias Hoene enters into the genre with a romp through London’s East End that sure to become a classic.
Taking place in London’s East End, Andy Macguire (Harry Treadaway) and Terry Macguire (Rasmus Hardiker) are none too pleased about the new redevelopment of their grandfather Ray Macguire’s (Alan Ford) nursing home. Together with cousin Shirley they plan a robbery that will save the home and its residents. Of course the robbery goes awry and the group becomes trapped by police in the bank. While planning a daring getaway, they discover zombies have taken over. Meanwhile, Ray has helped save as many of the residents as he could, and together they are held up in the kitchen. Eventually, it dawns on the boys perhaps they should see if their grandfather needs help.
Getting there is only half the fun.
The two leads do a wonderful job of creating the witty banter needed to a power like this. Part due to the quality of acting, part due to the strength of the script. Writers James Moran and Lucas Roche have created a clever script that is both reminiscent of the snappy British crime films of late, that also is solidly funny. While the boys may be quite fun, the true star of this is Ford’s rough and tumble acting in the old folks home. Filled with veteran British actors, including Bond girl Honor Blackman, they have a rollicking good time taking it to the zombies and delivering some funny and fun dialogue. Clichés may be abound, and one liners may seem a tad overdone, however it’s the tone and delivery that make it funny and original rather than trite and boring.
While comparisons to other horror comedy films are inevitable, this one has some unique and clever ideas of its own. In particular, the idea to have proper, slow moving zombies as opposed to fast moving zombie like creatures that in fact aren’t zombies at all, allows for a quite funny scene where a man with a walker tries to outpace a zombie. Fans of the genre will recognize and quite possibly anticipate what’s going to happen, but that hardly matters, as it’s the delivery by a cast who not only knows their craft, but is also enjoying themselves doing this film.
While well shot for the actors, the effects and CGI aren’t up to the quality of other aspects of the film. Inconsistently developed, at times they are quite obvious. There is a fair amount of the gore that is just off-screen, giving for blood splatter rather than graphic violence, though it seems budgetary constraints altered what could have been much better effects. These shortcomings are quite forgivable to fans however general audiences that are accustomed to seeing much slicker, big budget productions may not be as forgiving. This makes it a really good film, not a classic, though it has all of the elements to do so.