Click here to return to the main site.

DVD Review

DVD cover

Days of Darkness: Rise of the Flesheaters


Starring: Travis Brorsen, Roshelle Pattison and Chris Ivan Cevic
Revolver Entertainment
RRP: £12.99
Certificate: 18
Available 06 October 2008

Young couple Steve and Mimi have been camping in Topanga Canyon. They return to their dust-covered car after an apparently harmless comet has struck the Earth nearby. Steve tries to help a man, who is staggering along the road, and ends up being badly bitten by him. When the car is abruptly attacked by a group of vicious zombies, they are rescued by a man called Simon, who takes them to a small compound with a concrete bunker, hidden in the hills. Here they meet a mixed bunch of survivors, including an unhinged religious fanatic, an ex-porno star and her virgin daughter, two car salesmen and a pathologically suspicious and trigger-happy ranch owner. As the zombies gather at the fence seeking a way in, this motley crew of people is obliged to defend their territory. However, that proves difficult when the Bible-basher believes what's happening is God's plan to wipe out mankind, and Mimi becomes pregnant when she hasn't even had sex. Furthermore, at some stage someone will have to leave the safety of the compound to go in search of supplies...

The opening of this movie displays the dramatic title, the impressive rumbling sound effects and foreboding music, signalling the harbinger of doom. And then... the worst, most 'cartoony' CGI effects I've ever had the misfortune to witness represents the comet heading for Earth. Throughout the viewing process I was constantly changing my overall opinion of Days of Darkness. The bad moments seem to cancel-out the good, and vice versa.

Let's tackle those awful moments first. The dialogue is not only stilted much of the time, but also cringeworthy in its application. The character conversations flow into pockets of unnatural speech which proves uneasy to listen to. Then it's back to normal and you try to ignore the mistakes because it's more comfortable that way. The cutting of scenes is a bit shabby too; I was reminded of the old spoof soap opera, Acorn Antiques, when they would wait for their cues and then start walking. Background conversations should be properly scripted too, not just embarrassing indistinct muttering.

Another downside worth mentioning is the excruciatingly slow staggering of the zombies. Zombie films have moved on now - slow, lethargic lurching is no longer scary. It's not even enjoyable to watch. In fact, these creatures prove so slow that I'm certain any one of the characters would have ample opportunity to make a cup of tea, plant a rose bush and look through the Argos catalogue before the zombies got anywhere near them. Even those who perish at the aggressors' hands need to throw themselves in the right direction.

On the upside, first-time director Jake Kennedy should be applauded for inventing something a little new for the established zombie myth. His re-interpretation has an extraterrestrial species attempting to produce hybrids in order to survive on Earth. An embryo forms in the male scrotum, opening the way for a couple of moments which will have every warm-blooded male shifting uncomfortably in his seat. I also like the fact that this is not just a disease but a form of possession.

The discovery of a way to separate the host from the human individual harks back to simple but great science fiction ideas of the 1950s, like The Day of the Triffids and The War of the Worlds.

This director obviously needs some experience to hone his skills, because potentially great things could come from him in the future. But as for the present and this film, it's neither good or bad, hence its average rating.


Ty Power

Buy this item online

We compare prices online so you get the cheapest deal
Click on the logo of the desired store below to purchase this item.

£14.99 (
£8.99 (
£13.00 (
£7.99 (
£11.04 (
£9.47 (
£8.93 (

All prices correct at time of going to press.