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CORONA ZOMBIES (2020)

Directed by Charles Band
Written by Kent Roudebush, Silvia St. Croix
Starring Cody Renee Cameron, Robin Sydney, and the actors from HELL OF THE LIVING DEAD and ZOMBIES VS. STRIPPERS…

While the name Full Moon Features once had an air of esteem in the world of horror, lately the house that Charles Band made is has been churning out cheaply-made hour-long horror flicks that lack any of the creativity or ingenuity of his earliest efforts. Band is a modern-day Roger Corman, trying to churn out scores of sequels and spinoffs of relative hits GINGERDEAD MAN, OOGA-BOOGA, EVIL BONG, and of course, PUPPETMASTER. Most of the time, these films are made on a sound stage, intended to sell Full Moon merchandise (which is highlighted frequently) and cater to the easily-entertained pot smoking lifestyle, which Charles Band supports wholeheartedly.

Band takes a detour from his usual fare and delivers something akin to a MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER 3000 episode where he takes large chunks of public domain horror films (specifically HELL OF THE LIVING DEAD and ZOMBIES VS. STRIPPERS), laces them together with news reports about the Corona outbreak, and overdubs the footage with a new script. Maybe this quarantine is getting to me, but I actually kind of liked CORONA ZOMBIES. Just as MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER 3000 can be hit or miss with the comedy, so fares CORONA ZOMBIES. But Band keeps the jokey lines coming at a rapid pace and some of them actually made be giggle quite a bit.

A mishap at the Bat Soup Factory creates a deadly new threat to humanity, Corona Zombies. As Barbie (Cody Renee Cameron) vocally fries every word from her mouth while worrying about getting enough sanitizer and toilet paper, the world falls apart around her (according to clips from the above films). The usual talking points of social distancing, Corona being both a beer and a virus, quarantines, hoarding, masks, and washing hands are the subjects of obvious and broad jokes that land horribly. But occasionally there’s a zinger in there that hits it home. I’m not saying this is high entertainment, but fans of MST3K will find this one most entertaining.

CORONA ZOMBIES was advertised proudly as being made in 23 days from concept to final product. Expect corny jokes, gratuitous nudity, and gore and mayhem from other zombie movies here. It’s actually not terribly made and a step above the usual stuff Full Moon has put out recently. I wouldn’t mind it if Full Moon tries to do some more films with previously made footage as this one kind of works. If you’re looking for lowest of the lowbrow entertainment, CORONA ZOMBIES is the tasteless cure for your what ails you. Just don’t take it seriously and I think you’ll have fun with it. I know, I can’t believe I liked this film either. But I kind of did.