I’m not sure Ashes shoud really be considered a zombie film…it certanly dosen’t WANT to be one.What it really aspires to is a medical drama with some dire overtones. What it ends up being, is a melodrama with medical overtones and a zombie tmen tacked on to the final ten minuets (and considering this thing is a full hour and a half, that’s a BAD balance).
We have a doctor who comes on a stunnning new cure, but is it really the cure it seems? We have long pontificanting discussions and grim scenes involving microscopes and blood tests. It’s just far too ovverblone with such poor pacing, you’d lose me altogether with a lesser cast.
Our actors are good and the film has a polished professional look. I can see that they are going for more of a “Fear the Walking Dead” type of prequel. Most zombie films leave the origin of the virus a mystery, while this one it’s the entire focus. Sadly, it’s not more engaging. If you have subtitles and fastforeward, this might have some appeal. But know going in, it’s a slow, hammy and there’s no zombies until the very, very end.
I’ve actually seen this one before on Svengoolie’s show. It actually always made me think of Happer’s “Scars of Dracula” from 1970, with a dash of Elizabeth Bathory thrown in and then set in a modern setting. It’s not the masterpiece that the Hammer Dracula fims are, but it’s certainly cut from the same cloth, but executed with a bit less skill and money – and unfortunately it shows. It’s a genuinely fun film for the halloween season, but I’m not sure that there’s much more to it than that. Box sets and horror host shows are the perfect homes for this particular kind of movie.