House of the Dead (2003) 1 brain

When House of the Dead came out in the theaters, I was excited to see it, despite the disaster that was Resident Evil. Then I heard that the reviews of House of the Dead were trashing it, and I decided to wait until it came out on video. Then, I found myself renting other things instead, still planning on watching it someday... I should have waited longer. I think I was a full five minutes into the film when I said to myself, "My God, it's worse than I thought!"

Have you ever watched somebody else play a video game? If you're like me, you're not really drawn into their game, since you're just waiting for your chance to play. Watching House of the Dead is just like that, except you never get to play and you have to listen to some of the worst dialogue ever written. Not to mention watch some of the worst acting, try and ignore some of the worst plot holes, etc. I've never played the video game that this was based on, but the movie splices in so much game footage that I think I have a pretty good idea how it works. I think the director, Uwe Boll, stuck the footage in so that the avid House of the Dead players out there would know just what part of the game he was photocopying the current scene in the film from. I won't tell you the names of the actors and actresses as a favor to them, although if you really want to know, I guess I can't stop you.

Since the game has only the barest bones of a plot, it should not be surprising that this is true of the movie as well. When the characters aren't fighting zombies with skills that they shouldn't have, they're going through the motions of cliched scene after cliched scene. The basic flow of events is that some young, stupid people go to an island for a rave and get attacked by zombies. Because they are young, there is some gratuitous nudity and bad love scenes. Because they are stupid, their attempts at banter will make you wince.

And don't get me started on the cinematography. I know next to nothing about what is involved in good cinematography, but I know when what I'm watching doesn't have it. There were some cool special effects amidst the drawn-out, boring action sequences, but not nearly enough to make it worth watching this movie. Skip it.