Weekend Watchlist | Zombies!

By The Pitt News Staff

October is almost here, and you know what that means. It’s Halloween, the only holiday outside of Christmas that really lasts the whole month. Get your costumes, get your decorations, and please leave any unwanted candy corn at the Digital Desk cubicle in the Pitt News office and, of course, get some scary movies ready. Since George A. Romero’s zombie movies play such an important role in Pittsburgh’s history, we’re kicking off Spooky Season with some undead. Try not to get too scared!

Anna and the Apocalypse (Hulu) // Sinéad McDevitt, Digital Manager

Step aside “A Nightmare Before Christmas,” there’s a new Christmas/Halloween hybrid musical in town, “Anna and the Apocalypse.”

John McPhail and Alan McDonald’s musical-comedy follows Anna (Ella Hunt) and her friends as they try to reach their families trapped in their highschool due to a zombie apocalypse. The film is funny and very much parodies these kinds of movies, but it does have legitimately touching moments, relatable struggles for the characters and a boppin’ soundtrack. Some standout numbers are “Soldier At War,” “Human Voice” and the hilarious sequence “Turning My Life Around,” where Anna and her friend John (Malcolm Cumming) sing an upbeat song about the future, completely missing all the zombie carnage. If you’re looking for some lighter zombie fare, this is it.

28 Days Later (Prime Video) // Jacob Mraz, Staff Writer

In 2002, acclaimed director of “Trainspotting” & “Slumdog Millionaire,” Danny Boyle, partnered with then writer Alex Garland to deliver a film unlike any other. With inspiration from classic films like George A. Romero’s “Night of the Living Dead,” Garland penned a zombie film that stands out from the rest.

28 Days Later” follows the events of an epidemic where an animal liberation group releases a chimpanzee harboring a deadly and highly contagious virus known as “Rage” to near-total societal collapse. But for protagonist Jim (Cillian Murphy), this is all news because he just woke up from a coma. With the hospital deserted and his body ailing, Jim must contend with the psychotic and murderous hordes roaming the streets — people who, now infected, long for nothing but to smash and rip anything they can see into pieces. They do not feed — they only wish to kill. Jim must now find his way out of London before he becomes another victim of the virus.

“28 Days Later” is heart pounding horror at its finest. It’s a classic of the genre that is not to be missed.

Overlord (Amazon Prime) // Sinéad McDevitt, Digital Manager 

Just before D-Day, a group of American soldiers infiltrates enemy lines to destroy a radio-jamming tower, and discover that horrific experiments are being completed in this small French town. That’s right folks, we’re not just killing zombies — we’re killing Nazi zombies.

Zombie movies have evolved so much that we can now just take zombies and throw them in whatever genre we want, which is how you get “Overlord,” a war movie with zombies thrown in. You have the naive, big-hearted Private First Class Boyce (Jovan Adepo), the serious commander who is only focused on the mission, Corporal Lewis Ford (Wyatt Russell), Chloe Laurent (Mathilde Ollivier), the beautiful civilian who begs them for their help, and a plucky group of soldiers who might as well have death flags painted on their helmets. Classic war movie! “Overlord” is very fun, if not something to think about too hard, and with a take on zombies more akin to the “Resident Evil” films than “The Walking Dead.” Add it to your list this year.