The Dead Hate the Living (1999) 1 brain

This film opens with a female doctor performing an autopsy on a male corpse. The corpse wakes up and kills her, and she shortly becomes a zombie herself, at which point the two start making out. Then the lights come up, and we discover that this is actually a scene being shot by a low-budget film crew. As cheesy as this scene sounded, the continuation of it would probably still have made a better film than the one I actually had to watch.

This movie was written and directed by the same guy, Dave Parker. For a low-budget film, having the same guy as writer and director is often a bad sign. ("What do you wanna do? I dunno. Wanna make a zombie film?") The character of the director in the movie (interestingly also called "David P.") has a cast and crew consisting mostly of friends and family. They spend a good part of the beginning of the movie sitting around making clever comments about the horror genre. I think Dave Parker is trying to show how much his characters love the genre by making them drop endless references to it, but this is a cheap substitute for actual dialogue. If you're not a die-hard fan, you won't understand many of the references anyway.

The characters are making their movie in an abandoned hospital, where unbeknownst to them, something went horribly wrong some time ago. They discover a large, coffin-shaped object in the basement, and upon opening it, they set loose a chain of events that leads to a zombie horde. This movie has some good zombie effects, and there are some good lines scattered here and there, but there are also lots and lots of gaping plot holes. The actors could be decent if they had a better script, but they were mostly given cliched banter and dumb observations to work with. The story does have some original ideas, but overall they are lost in the rest of the mediocre film.