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Night Life (1989)

  Tags: 80's, Alan Blumenfeld, Anthony Geary, blood, cheesy, Cheryl Pollak, Darcy DeMoss, David Acomba, gore, hidden gem, high school, jocks, John Astin, Kenneth Ian Davis, Lisa Fuller, Mark Pellegrino, night life, Scott Grimes, teens, underrated, Zombie Movies

Your rating: None Average: 6.5 (2 votes)
Reviewer Rating: 
6

nightlife.jpg
Rating #: 
6/10
Director: 
David Acomba
Runtime: 
89 minutes
Cast: 
Scott Grimes, John Astin, Cheryl Pollak, Anthony Geary, Alan Blumenfeld, Kenneth Ian Davis, Darcy DeMoss, Lisa Fuller, Mark Pellegrino


Known as Grave Misdemeanors in the UK, I first caught this flick during one of my many horror-renting binges at my local blockbuster while growing up. As far as I can remember, I liked the film, and when I was given the chance to revisit it, naturally I accepted. Much like a lot of the 80's horror that I enjoyed while growing up, I tend to still enjoy them now, and this movie was no different. Although a zombie flick, the walking dead don't actually make an appearance until an hour into it. The rest of the movie just follows a young brainy high school student, who happens to also run a mortuary with his uncle. During the first hour we follow young Archie (Scott Grimes) as he struggles to keep his strict uncle happy, attempt to avoid the local bullies, and try his hardest to get the girl. As the film progresses the Archie character really grows on you and you forget that this was supposed to be a zombie flick.

Once the hour mark is up, the zombie action finally kicks into high gear. The movie's script kept things simple -- the dead are simply reanimated by lightning during a thunderstorm that found its way into the mortuary. To make matters worse, the zombies are the jocks and their slut girlfriends that tormented Archie prior to their fatal car accident. Bullies in life, and still bullies in death, the group set their sights on Archie and anyone else who stand in their path. What I really liked about this film (aside from the fun lead character Archie) were the zombies. These guys aren't your typical slow-moving brain-dead zombies that we've grown accustomed to. Nope, these guys drink, drive, use tools to kill, and yes, even have sex! Luckily we don't see the zombies procreate, but we're given the hint when our lead is hiding under the bed while the two zombies are rockin' it above him.

These zombies don't even feed on human flesh; they just seem to become unstoppable murderous killing machines. Aside from a couple scenes in the first hour, the gore doesn't pick up until the last 30-minutes, which also includes a note-worthy death involving air pressure and an exploding head; sweet! Despite these zombies doing every-day living things, they don't talk, which is a huge relief, considering it would have definitely ruined the flick. The silent, but deadly-type worked a lot better for them. If you find yourself enjoying the semi slow-pace in the first hour, as we follow Archie and the silly situations he finds himself in, then you'll probably love the last 30-minutes with the zombies.

A fun comedy the first hour and a zombie flick in the last 30-minutes, Night Life, is an enjoyable and underrated 80's horror flick. Check it if you can find it.

Posted on July 5, 2009 - 5:58pm | FrighT MasteR

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