Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead (2014)    1 Stars
Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead (2014)
Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead (2014)


Director: Kiah Roache-Turner

Cast: Jay Gallagher, Bianca Bradey, Leon Burchill

Synopsis: A meteor shower turns most of the population into bloodthirsty zombies…




In the wake of the Mad Max reboot it seems that every B-movie filmmaker is attaching a ‘Road to’ suffix to the title of their baby in the hope of duping gullible moviegoers into looking at what they’ve made. It’s a ploy that smacks of desperation, and strongly suggests that their movie really doesn’t have enough of merit to stand on its own. It’s laughable, really; I mean, do they honestly believe we’re stupid enough to repeatedly mistake a glut of pale imitations for the real thing? Well, not this movie reviewer – I caught on after watching no more than five or six of these duds…

Wyrmwood’s Road of the Dead is littered with dead people who don’t realise it – and I don’t just mean the zombies. We know that the wife and kid of Alpha Male mechanic turned road warrior and zombie-killer Barry (Jay Gallagher), are dead before we even meet them because he tells us so, but other characters swear and drink beer as they fight zombies, unaware that the clock is inexorably counting down to their pre-ordained demise. It’s an undeniable truth that we no longer watch these movies to see if the characters we meet will survive, but merely to see how they will die…

Wyrmwood does at least try to throw a few new ideas into an over-stuffed horror sub-genre which, at the time of writing, shows no sign of waning popularity: these zombies are dual-speed, shambling around like one of Romero’s shambling-est during the day, and then sprinting about by night as if auditioning for Danny Boyle. They exhale a noxious green gas, a detail which we initially presume is simply because it looks cool on screen, but which, as our hardy survivors eventually discover, makes a terrific fuel for their armoured vehicle – just as well seeing as all propulsion fuels have lost their potency in the wake of the meteor shower which is responsible for turning most of the population into zombies. There’s also a plucky heroine (Bianca Bradey), sister of Barry the mechanic, who finds herself kidnapped by sinister government militiamen and injected with zombie blood – a practice which ultimately gives her the power to control the zombies movements.

While it’s refreshing to see makers of zombie flicks attempting to come up with something original, it has to be said that most of Wyrmwood’s new ideas don’t really add anything positive to the mix, and the film is strongest when its adhering to tried and tested genre tropes. The movie’s low budget is evident in its use of a rural location which gives it a convenient reason for showing at most only a handful of zombies in any given scene, and the strong suspicion that the brothers Turner-Roache have deliberately attempted to create a movie that would become a cult hit stands against it simply because those who aim to make a cult movie are almost always doomed to fail…

(Reviewed 9th August 2015)

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Wyrmwood: Road of The Dead – Exclusive Launch Trailer



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