Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse
In an attempt to take full advantage of the Halloween season by milking zombie cult fandom for all it’s worth, Christopher Landon’s Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse is a mildly disappointing, juvenile gore-fest.
Keeping to the very literal title, three wilderness scouts are best friends struggling to fit in at high school. The strength of their friendship is tested with a good, old-fashioned zombie apocalypse – surprisingly common in suburban Mid-Western American towns. Tye Sheridan plays the likeable Ben, and is persuaded by Carter (Logan Miller) to abandon their awkward best friend, Augie (Joey Morgan), to attend a secret party. Augie remains devoted to the Scout Leader Rogers, played by seasoned comedic actor David Koechner. As the two rogue scouts pursue their social and sexual awakening at a high school party, they come to realise that the entire town is victim to a fatal zombifying virus.
Though the zombie-comedy genre is already tiresome and predictable, Scouts Guide strives to make the genre even more confusing and ridiculous. It exhibits the conventional norms of a zombie horror, with eerily slow pans of a desolate wood and the startling jump cuts to a zombie munching on a victim’s carotid artery. Besides the gruesome, flesh-eating undead, the film becomes slightly more entertaining at its crudest and most perverted points: as a teenage boy fondles a zombie’s breasts and another scout dangles from a window ledge by an old, stretchy zombie penis. In fact, the most suspenseful part of the film occurs as a naked zombie stripper stalks a nervous teenage boy, who only realises she’s a zombie when her blood gushes over his face and fist full of singles.
Christopher Landon’s gruesome film is best described as a sickeningly stupid, yet reluctantly entertaining, bundle of teenage gags and perverse one-liners with the occasional blood and guts all over the campfire. It may not be a shining example of a thrilling zombie horror, or a clever coming-of-age comedy, but it could be a successful recruitment scheme for the scouts. If ten years of scouts training prepares you to battle a zombie takeover and win the girl of your dreams, as the film suggests, the kids will be desperate to trade in their PlayStations for a taste of the great outdoors.
Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse is released in cinemas on 6th November 2015.
Watch the trailer for Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse here: