Writer: Drew Cullingham (Screenplay)
Starring: Spencer Brown, Lauren Socha, Ewen MacIntosh, Emily Booth, Kane Hodder, Bill Moseley, Michael Berryman, Brian Blessed
Plot: Trevor is ‘between jobs’. He spends his days avoiding his overbearing wife by hiding out in his allotment shed and painting figurines for his wargames with his agoraphobic friend, Graham, and dreaming of his heroic alter-ego, the battle mage Casimir the Destroyer. When Mr Parsons, one of the other allotment tenants, petitions to have Trevor removed from his disgrace of a plot (he’s not there to grow stuff!) an argument ensues that leaves Trevor with a corpse to hide. Unfortunately, this untimely accident coincides with the zombie apocalypse and Mr Parsons’ return is just the beginnings of Trevor’s problems. More pressing is whether or not he should try and save his wife and her beautiful best friend, who both he and Graham have a thing for.
Tagline – An unlikely hero’s tale of blood, sweat, and shears !
Runtime: 1 Hour 25 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Fun Zombie Horror
Story: Shed of the Dead starts as we meet Trevor (Brown) a professional slacker, who spends his days between jobs in his allotment shed in a fantasy world, he doesn’t take care of his allotment though which has seen the other resident led by Mr Parsons (Hodder) want him out.
Trevor lives his with wife Bobbi (Socha) who works at the local hair dressers with Harriet (Booth) and he hides out with his best friend Graham (MacIntosh). When a zombie apocalypse happens Trevor must team with Graham to save the women in their lives.
Thoughts on Shed of the Dead
Characters – Trevor is the slacker, he is stuck in a fantasy world in his allotment where he puts off life responsibilities, so much so that h doesn’t realize the zombie apocalypse has started. Once he learns about it, he must live out his fantasy by trying to figure out how to save his wife. The zombie apocalypse brings out a new side to Trevor, a braver version of the cowardly one in life. Bobbi is Trevor’s wife that works at the hairdressers, she is constantly shouting at him forcing him into hiding. Graham is the best friend that tends not to leave the house, he is into the wargames too and has a massive crush on Harriet as part of their fantasy world. Harriet the best friend of Bobbi, she is the one the guys both fancy and she knows how to look after her clients. Mr Parsons is the man that wants Trevor out of the allotment because he never looks after his plot like the rest of the residents. Doc is one of the residents that does seem to be ready for the end of the world, as he is found cutting them down through the film.
Performances – Spencer Brown is our main star which he does make the most of showing the evolution of his character. Lauren Socha, Ewen MacIntosh and Emily Booth bring the grounded characters to life, while the horror icons, Kane Hodder, Bill Moseley and Michael Berryman get the horror moments in the film.
Story – The story here follows a slacker that must take responsibility once a zombie apocalypse starts outside his allotment shed. This story does continue to build on the ever-increasing amount of films that use (Location) of the Dead to bring to life a new idea for a horror comedy story. this does work because it pushes our character into needing to focus on taking life more serious even if it means the end of the world will make it happen. When it comes to how the story unfolds, it doesn’t bring anything new to the genre, we can almost use the checklist of how everything unfolds too. The weakness in the story turns to sex-based jokes or references or dreams which just gets turned to when the story feels like it has run out of ideas.
Comedy/Horror – The comedy in the film does work in places, only a lot comedy ends up turning to sexual fantasy instead of focusing on the story unfolding, while the horror elements of the film target the idea of a zombie outbreak with different creation of zombies.
Settings – The film uses the allotment shed as one of the main locations, only we don’t stay head long enough to get the most out of the idea in the title.
Special Effects – The effects in the film are strong, be it the make up for the zombies or the created fantasy world the characters sometimes turn to.
Final Thoughts – This is a fun zombie movie, it gets the required moments right, laughs and horror without being anything completely new.
Overall: Beds in nicely.
Writer: Anthony Peckham (Screenplay) John Carlin (Book)
Starring: Morgan Freeman, Matt Damon, Tony Kgoroge, Patrick Mofokeng, Matt Stern, Julian Lewis Jones
Plot: Nelson Mandela, in his first term as the South African President, initiates a unique venture to unite the apartheid-torn land: enlist the national rugby team on a mission to win the 1995 Rugby World Cup.
Tagline – He was a prisoner who became a president. To unite his country, he asked one man to do the impossible.
Runtime: 2 Hours 14 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Important Biopic
Story: Invictus starts when Nelson Mandela (Freeman) becomes the President of South Africa, this causes a divide in the country with the white people rejecting his election, with the black people seeing him a hero. Nelson wants to try and put the past behind them and unite the country, with him first introducing mixed raced bodyguards, even if his own Jason (Kgoroge) and Linga (Mofokeng) disapprove.
When Nelson sees the divide in a simple rugby match, he sees a opportunity to unite his country, as the black community will cheer whoever the Springbok are playing, inviting the captain Francois Pienaar (Damon) to tea, he explains his plans to unite with the upcoming Rugby World Cup.
Thoughts on Invictus
Characters – Nelson Mandela is one of the biggest icons in history, we follow his life from the time he becomes President of South Africa, he has been in prison for 27 years beforehand and has decided he wants to unite the race war within the country. He must put aside what he was raised to believe to change the mindsets, starting with his own staff, Nelson sees the Rugby World Cup as a chance to bring the country together to celebrate if they can defy the odds and win it. Francois Pienaar is the captain of the Springbok, he comes from a wealthy family and becomes the connection to the President as they look to change the country together. Jason Tshabalala is the head of Nelson’ security, he must put aside he own feelings towards the white community to help Nelson achieve the union he desires.
Performances – Morgan Freeman is fantastic in this leading role, he delivers the speeches to make us believe we are watching the incredible man himself. Matt Damon did seem like a strange pick for the South African rugby player, though he does make us believe he will help bring the team together. The supporting cast might not be as well known, but they all give performances that help us understand the struggles being experienced.
Story – The story follows the time that Nelson Mandela became President of South Africa and his first year in charge with the build up to the Rugby World Cup where he uses the tournament as a way to bring the nation together to try to stop the racial divide. This shows how any sport can see differences put aside to see the better future, one without them needing to hate people just because that is what they once were told. If you want to see how a truly inspirational leader operates, he sees the peoples love and finds a way to make them work together to support a common goal. We could look at the story a say, this only happened because of the Rugby World Cup falling at the right time, but that is over thinking.
Biopic/Sport– Learning what Nelson Mandela achieved in this year is incredible, we might not learn his whole story, but this is the chapter that helped change a nation. When it comes to the sports side of the film, we get to see Rugby in all its glory, seeing the hard hitting nature of the sport, showing that sport can bring people together.
Settings – The film is set in South Africa, with it setting showing us the divide between the people and how the biggest occasion in the countries sporting history being the most important one.
Final Thoughts – This is an incredible look at what Nelson Mandela achieved in a year as President in the country, the spirit of sport bringing a nation together and a moment in sporting history.
Overall: Incredible sporting drama.