Boy Eats Girl

Starring: Samantha Mumba, David Leon and Deirdre O'Kane
Optimum Home Entertainment
RRP: 15.99
Certificate: 18
Available 13 February 2006

Teenager Nathan wants to ask out Jessica but, although encouraged by his friends, it never seems to work out as events conspire to get in the way. When his friends arrange a meeting for the pair Nathan thinks he has been stood-up. Jessica sneaks out late after being kept in by her father. Nathan has already left and, as it begins to rain heavily, he sees Jessica being driven home and, naturally, gets totally the wrong idea. Taking a stuffed toy from a hangman's noose in his bedroom, he loops it around his own neck and stands on a chair contemplating his situation. Unfortunately, his mother comes in and accidentally knocks the chair away with the door. Nathan wakes up the next day not realising he is a zombie. His mother, who is restoring artefacts in the church, has discovered an ancient zombie reanimation text, but the last page is torn out. When confronted, Nathan attacks the school bully who runs riot eating flesh and turning much of the school and local town into zombies. Can Nathan's mother discover the missing part of the ritual and save him...?

It's the age-old story. Girl meets boy. Boy turns into zombie. Girl loves zombie. Boy eats girl. Except that he doesn't, so the clever title proves to be somewhat of a misnomer. This 2005 short film (only around 77 minutes) is an Irish / UK co-production. There's more backers than you can shake a stick at, taking another few minutes from the running time. However, what you do get within a very limited genre is pretty good. Boy Eats Girl mixes visceral horror with light humour as a release. This balance has proved itself effective countless times in the past, and I think the film gets away with it here.

When the school creep tries to seduce Jessica we have, "Is there someone else?" "There's anyone else!". And I knew they wouldn't get through the entire running time without using the sexual connotation of the title. Nathan's two friends are hiding from zombies in a cupboard with the school "It-girl" when she makes a loud exclamation. One of the boys hisses, "Shut up, or I'll eat you myself!" and the reply is "I've heard that one before."

The problem is that this movie has been dropped into a very crowded genre. Perhaps they should have tried something different; zombie pictures have been done to undeath, and the comedy slant is obviously nothing new with many productions having been much more successful. It would be a shame if this offering disappeared without a trace, but its style is more suited to late night Channel 4 than cinema.

Only two extras on the disc: Eating Out - a short making of documentary, and a trailer. One more comment. On the end of film credits the male snake is revealed to be called Buffy. Having a female name must have given him quite a few psychological problems. No wonder the snake is so angry in the film.

Ty Power

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