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DVD Review: Office of the Dead

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Anyone who has ever worked in an office knows the feeling—day after day, spending endless hours surrounded by zombies. Inept zombies, butt-kissing zombies, middle management zombies—the list goes on and on. Finally, there is a movie that captures the essence of cubicled catacombs filled with the undead (aka white-collar workers).

Office of the Dead is an independent film, really a B-movie, that has captured life at the bottom of the corporate ladder and turned it into a comedy/horror flick. While some clichés remain unturned, the filmmakers give us a good picture of the office worker’s daily grind.

Due to some inexpert tinkering to an experimental computer program designed to gladden unhappy people, workers at “Life Corp, a leader in the technology field,” become a crew of zombies. Not all the workers of course. There are a few who survive the plague long enough to get together and make a plan.

Actually they make several plans—zombies aren’t all that cooperative when you try to destroy them. Expecting leadership from the non-zombie corporate head, our band of heroes are sadly disappointed. Armed with keyboards and golf clubs, they fend off the ravenous horde to stage their defense, and turn their coworkers into the zombies they used to be—the kind that don’t eat flesh. Amazingly, with all the undead running around, there’s not a lot of blood. One victim who was attacked by several zombies didn’t have a speck of blood on his white shirt.

Threaded throughout this fine tapestry are news bulletins that parody what might be seen during a real emergency. When the zombie-filled building is locked down and the outside world doesn’t yet know it is filled with the walking dead, an anchorman asks an “expert” what the health effects might be. She tells him that she is unaware of any studies on the effects of locking people in a building for twenty minutes. End of news flash.

It’s all silly, maybe even goofy, but it is done in fun. This is a movie you shouldn’t watch alone—not because it’s scary, but because the more people watching together, the more fun it is. Yes, of course beer wouldn’t hurt. Isn’t that what the “B” in “B-movies” stands for?

Leading the cast are Teddy Chen Culver and Shawn Parikh as software engineers (the bottom of the food chain) and Christina July Kim as their project manager. The actors are all in on the joke and seem to have enjoyed making the film.

Office of the Dead is not on the level of Shaun of the Dead or Zombieland, but—taken at face value—it’s entertaining. It’s not a film I’d be happy paying $10 to see, though. The DVD includes interviews, bloopers, a trailer, and coming attractions.

Bottom Line: Would I buy/rent/stream Office of the Dead?This is a film I would definitely wait to see streaming free from Netflix; younger audiences might enjoy renting it for pizza night.



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