Sean K. (Blindzombie74) from UPPER SANDSKY, OH Reviewed on 1/19/2017...
one of the best "bad" movies I've seen in a long time!I thought the end dragged out a bit, but still a good movie to shut your brain off and watch.
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Chad B. (abrnt1) from CABERY, IL Reviewed on 4/12/2010...
Before Peter Jackson became mainstream he was known for insane horror films. Dead Alive (original title Brain Damage) is a gore filledcomic delight.
3 of 3 member(s) found this review helpful.
Brittni H. (venus) from BATON ROUGE, LA Reviewed on 10/25/2009...
Raimi fans, if you haven't seen Peter Jackson's contribution to the genre, you have seriously missed out. There is gore, an ass-kicking priest, hated relatives, and a weak Momma's boy who finds out he has a spine.
If you like gross, if you like slapstick, if you enjoyed classically bad or chessey sci-fi as an artform, you NEED this movie.
4 of 4 member(s) found this review helpful.
Jorge S. (jorgito2001) from WESLEY CHAPEL, FL Reviewed on 9/15/2009...
Give Evil Dead 1 & 2 a run for the money in the horror/comedy dept. I have fond memories of my cousin RUNNING over from his house one Sat. morning & saying "you have GOT to see this" & proceeded to play the Unrated VHS tape all those years ago...I was instantly blown away..AND in love! Made for a mere $2 million at the time, it looks genuinely more expensive. Dead Alive (aka Braindead) is on my personal top 10 of horror movies! Just try not to eat heavy BEFORE watching this movie.
8 of 8 member(s) found this review helpful.
Nicole W. (sterju3) from SCRANTON, PA Reviewed on 5/4/2009...
any gore hound will love this movie...a classic 80's blood filled horror/comedy that will have you laughing your a## off. The ending is a true classic with a man, a lawnmower, hundreds of corpses, and buckets of blood and gore..I believe this is in the guiness book of world records as the film using the most gallons of fake blood...enjoy! for true fans of cheesy 80's horror only!
6 of 6 member(s) found this review helpful.
As Outrageous as Advertised
General Zombie | the West | 11/20/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"As you likely know, if you're reading this, Dead Alive is fairly widely regarded as the goriest movie ever made. Having not seen every movie ever made I'm not prepared to declare it as such, but it's certainly the goriest movie I've ever seen. By far. To give you a bit of perspective, I would say Day of the Dead and Riki-Oh probably come closest of the films I've seen, and Dead Alive has got to be at least 5 times gorier than either of those films.(And that's probably a conservative estimate) This fact alone should make it mandatory viewing for anyone interested in Horror films.(Of course, this isn't actually a horror film; I don't think it genuinely tries to be scary even once. But, the gore-comedy is primarily of interest to horror fans, naturally)
As one would expect, this film has it's roots in Re-Animator and the Evil Dead films, but it manages to find it's own style and tone. Evil Dead II was wildly over-the-top and energetic while Re-Animator was pretty subdued and deadpan much of the time. Dead Alive, directed by the now highly famed and lauded Peter Jackson, is somewhere in between, certainly not as controlled as Re-Animator, but nowhere near as flat out weird and kinetic as Evil Dead II.(at least not from beginning to end.) And yeah it's pretty funny, though perhaps the majority of the non-gore related humor tends to fall flat. It's also more purely good-natured and fun-loving than any of those films.(Perhaps this is related to their New Zealand accents) I don't know if it's necessarily better than any of those films, it's a tough call, but they're all in the same league, and fans of one ought to like the others.
Inspiration is frequently in short supply in the non-zombie related scenes, but their are enough zombie scenes that it doesn't matter too much. The characters are extremely broad caricatures, including the cute, naive love interest, the dorky, buttoned down hero, the evil controlling mother and the conniving, greedy and chauvinistic uncle. Naturally characters don't matter a whole helluva lot in this film, but, for what it's worth, both Paquita and Lionel are reasonably likable as the protagonist. The film ain't much on plot either, as it's pretty much just a series of comic scenes involving Lionel's attempts to keep the zombie outbreak a secret, and then their collective attempts to simply destroy them. Personally, I find this structural format to be perfectly fine. The less plot the better, when it comes to this sort of film.
The gore is so ridiculous and over-the-top that it's hard to imagine how anyone could be offended by it, though it is quite gross at times. The gore itself particularly reminds of the original Evil Dead, as it emphasizes goo and moistness, and the zombies look fairly reminiscent of the demon-possessed individuals from that film. Although the gore isn't nor is it trying to be realistic, the execution is often more professional and well done than I would've anticipated. Going into too many specifics would be terribly time consuming, but their are a few things that demand pointing out. The single best gore effect would have to be towards the beginning of the film, when the nurse gets her head ripped off. (most of the way, anyway) And, the much famed lawnmower massacre towards the end of the film is classic, and has some surprisingly nicely done effects to go along with the sheer over-the-top insanity of the scene.(The effects I'm referring, in specific, to some of the shots of the limbs getting shredded into nothingness) And, the stop-motion animated sumatran rat monkey is quite fun as well.
Yeah, this movie is pretty great. Not quite the all time highpoint in gore, in my mind, however. I think that Riki-Oh is funnier on the gore front, and am more impressed by some more serious films that display more realistic gore. But Dead Alive still does what it does very well."
An acquired taste, but I enjoyed it.
Mike K. | Massachusetts, USA | 09/06/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"You might come in with the wrong expectations for this movie, it's primarily reputation is for it's gore. Which is deserved, even in the more widely available slightly-tamed down version that's more commonly available in the US, by the end of the film nearly every inch of the screen is covered in blood and guts. But don't neccesarily expect something frightening because of this, the movie is overall more funny than scary, from the ridiculous premise for the zombies' origin (a cursed Samarian rat-monkey imported to New Zealand) to the myriad bizarre and quirky characters and of course a lot of gross-out humor. At times it almost resembles what would happen if Monty Python made a zombie movie and ran as far with the blood and gore as they possibly could.You'll enjoy this movie if the following apply to you:1) the phrases "karate priest", "baby zombie", and "rat-monkey" piqued your interest.2) You liked Evil Dead II and Army Of Darkness, and are definitely not in the camp that the series went downhill once Sam Raimi started adding in comic elements3) You're not at all squeamish about blood and relish completely over-the-top bordering on implausible gory death scenes.4) You have a general taste for cheesy b-movies."
THE BLOODIEST FILM IN CINEMATIC HISTORY!!!
Guido | 01/16/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Words just cannot describe this unbelievable gore-fest from New Zealand. Peter Jackson has totally outdone himself with an incredible zombie flick that's sure to make you wanna laugh your butt off! The prostetic make-up and special gore-effects by Richard Taylor were amazing. I don't think I've ever seen half of a body jump on somebody and spill out it's bodly organs all over the place, or half of a head getting kicked around all over the place get thrown into a blender. The nearly millions of gallons of blood just pour and pour and pour. This is one not to be missed by any gorehound fan out there!!! WARNING: THIS MOTION PICTURE CONTAINS NON-STOP SCENES OF EXTREME GRAPHIC VIOLENCE AND GORE. THIS FILM IS NOT FOR THE FAINT AT HEART. WATCH AT YOUR OWN RISK!!! Please avoid the HORRIBLY CHOPPED UP R-rated version at all costs! Stick with the US UNRATED version. If possible, see if you can find the Japanese Import of "Dead Alive" entitled "Braindead" because it runs nearly 10 minutes longer than the US UNRATED VERSION and contains much more gore."
Guido | NY United States | 04/01/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When you think of blood and gore, movies such as, Hellraiser, From Beyond, Evil Dead and Re-Animator may come to mind. These movies, however, are merely kindergarden class to this blood drenched classic. All the reviews I've read say this is probably the goriest movie in history. I'd have to agree with that sentiment.The story about a young, shy man named Lionel(Timothy Balme) who takes care of his domineering mother. Lionel meets up with a young woman in a little store named Pakita. She persues Lionel and gets him to accompany her to the zoo. While spying on the couple Lionel's mother is bitten by the Sumatran Rat Monkey. After being infected with the bite she becomes a hideous undead creature. Lionel, however still takes the time to care for her and all of the others that will become infected with this disease. If your looking for a frightful movie then this movie would not be for you. The storyline is weak but when you have so much blood, gore and guts on the screen do you really care about a story? This is definitely the goriest movie ever made. Scenes include a rib cage being pulled out, plenty of body dismemberment and the best scene, chopping up dozens of zombies with a lawnmower plus much more. This movie splills more blood than the elevator scene in Stephen King's The Shining. Just describing these scenes and talking about the movie gives it no justice in just how gorey it is. You gotta see this movie for yourself. The dazzling special effects are courtesy of Richard Taylor."
Hilarious and Nasty--AND Stay Away from the "R" version
Jeffrey Moore | Richmond, VA | 11/07/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When I first rented "Dead Alive," I got it from a Blockbuster store. A critic on the front of the box was quoted as saying "This is the goriest and funniest film I've ever seen!" I watched the movie, and wondered how anyone could have found the film "gory" OR "funny." To me, it just didn't make sense, and it seemed just plain stupid and boring. Of course, what I didn't know then was that the movie had been cut, and almost 10 minutes of additional gore was missing. If you think about that, that's a LOT of gore (a death scene takes what, 5 seconds?). SO, since I couldn't find the unrated version anywhere, I ordered it and watched it last night. NOW I see what the critic was talking about. Ironically, by taking out all the gore, Blockbuster simply made the movie more disturbing and strange. WITH all the gore, it's nothing short of hysterical. Here's a small comparison between the R and unrated versions:
1) right away, the first man to be bitten is practically mutilated in the unrated version. He right hand and left arm are seen chopped off. In the R version, neither scene is shown, just him screaming.
2) the "lunch" scene is MUCH funnier in the unrated version. Lionel's mother squirts blood into the guests pudding. We watch him eat the pudding. Then her ear falls off into her own pudding, and she eats that, too, sending another guest running to the bathroom. In the R version, we have to imply that she has squirted blood into the pudding, and the ear never falls off (which makes for much confusion later when it's quite apparently missing).
3) when the nurse comes to check on Lionel's mother in the unrated version, the zombie grabs her face. Mother's fingers meld into the nurse's face, and eventually put it backward at a 90 degree angle. This makes for some hysterically disturbing scenes later where she just can't seem to keep her head on straight. In the R version, we see the Mother pop up behind the nurse, but see nothing of the gore. By cutting that violence, though, any future reference to the nurse's head problem is therefore not funny--just confusing.
4) The Party at the end: Where to start? In the R version I saw, the party is a totally confusing, strange, and illogical event. Zombies suddenly pop to life, people run, people fall, and then suddenly Lionel shows up with a lawnmower and everyone dies. In the UNRATED version, I watched in horror and amusement at some of the most grisly, but way over-the-top death scenes I've ever seen. People are beheaded, disembowled, and mutilated. One man's ribs are pulled out while he watches. Another woman is punched so hard from behind that the hand comes through the back of her head and out of her mouth. It's powerful stuff--but much funnier when shown. Bottom line: UNRATED VERSION: 5 stars R Version: 1 star Stay away from the Rated R version!"