Zombie aka Zombi 2 (1979)
Back of the box...
“Shredded corpses are discovered on a boat adrift in New York harbor. A note tells of a strange plague on the remote island of Matool. . .
A pretty woman journeys there to see that her father is all right. He’s NOT all right: The Island is infested with RAVENOUS ZOMBIES - Zombies with a BIG TASTE for flesh! They’re bad to the bone!
Lucio Fulci’s graphic masterpiece!”
Director: Lucio Fulci
Starring: Tisa Farrow, Ian McCulloch, Richard Johnson
Watch the Trailer
Some might argue that Lucio Fulci’s Zombie is among the best films the zombie genre has to offer, while others would claim it to be just another cash-grab attempt by Italian filmmakers to capitalize on the success of American movies. Can’t it be both? We say yes.
The story starts as Anne Bowles (Tisa Farrow) travels to the remote island of Matool to search for her father after his boat is found adrift in the New York harbor. Spoiler alert, there’s zombies there! And that’s about it story-wise, nice and simple. Zombie's straightforward story makes room for some of the most memorable scenes in zombie movie history, a zombie attacks a shark for fuck’s sake! It’s clearly a real shark and how they shot it is a mystery to us.
So, how is this movie called Zombie AND Zombi 2? Is it somehow a sequel to itself? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ It’s just another case of the transatlantic name change. You know, when a horror movie makes the trip across the Atlantic and miraculously ends up with a different title. Unlike other films, with Zombie we at least have an explanation for the name mix up. Let us explain. A version of George Romero’s Dawn of the Dead, re-edited by Dario Argento and scored by Goblin, was released in Italy with the title Zombi. While Fulci’s Zombie has little to do with Dawn of the Dead beyond its hordes of undead, it was released in Europe as Zombi 2 in hopes of capitalizing on the success of Romero’s film. Fulci’s movie takes the intestine slurping, neck tearing ghouls that Romero let loose on the world in 1968’s Night of the Living Dead and transports them into a story drawing from classics such as 1932’s White Zombie where the undead are the result of a Haitian voodoo curse. The melding of old and new with gore effects rivaling Dawn of the Dead make for a really entertaining watch.
Lucio Fulci, the now legendary horror director, had been known for the graphic violence of his giallo films in the 1970’s but had yet to take the plunge into all out horror. Though he had some success in Italy, it was Zombie that brought him international fame and notoriety. Today Fulci is recognized as one of the greats in the horror genre, and while he directed his last film in ‘91 and passed away in ‘96, his movies are still being discovered, like a rite of passage, by new generations of horror fans.
Zombie is a horror classic and easily one of the best zombie movies of all time. Sure, it tried to ride on a few coat tails, but it really didn’t need to. Today Zombie stands alone as its own masterpiece of low budget undead horror and gore.
And the eye gouge! Ho-ly shit!