Reviews

Zombie Strippers

Opening Friday, April 18th (limited)

Cast:

Robert Englund as Ian Essko

Jenna Jameson as Kat

Roxy Saint as Lillith

Joey Medina as Paco

Shamron Moore as Jeannie

Penny Drake as Sox

Jennifer Holland as Jessy

John Hawkes as Davis

Jeannette Sousa as Berengé

Whitney Anderson as Gaia

Carmit Levité as Madame Blavatski

Calvin Green as Cole

Zak Kilberg as Byrdflough

Catero Colbert as Major Camus

Jen Alex Gonzalez as Lt. Ryker

Directed by Jay Lee

Summary:

A funny title and easy-to-sell premise is obliterated by the director and cast’s inability to entertain with agonizingly dumb jokes and rotten overused clichés.

Story:

A deadly chemical virus has been unleashed that reanimates the dead, as these things usually do, and the first place it hits is a strip club called Rhino’s afflicting the club’s best dancer Kat (Jenna Jameson) turning her into a super-zombie-stripper who the clients love, until she starts eating them.

Analysis:

High-concept horror movies are nothing new and neither are deliberately funky B-movies, and when your movie has the self-explanatory title of “Zombie Strippers”, the script probably writes itself, and sadly, this script needs to get fired because as hard as it tries, the movie is never scary, nor funny, or anything else that you might expect with a premise like the title promises.

First-timer Jay Lee starts his movie with witty and biting political humor that promises more intelligent recourse than the title might preclude, but that’s all there is, as the film quickly turns into a low-budget “Resident Evil” with soldiers fighting their way through a chemical plant where the obligatory virus catalyst has been unleashed creating zombiefied lab personnel. One of the soldiers gets bitten and ends up in a local strip club where we’re introduced to the various characters that inhabit it including Kat, the club’s biggest star, who is the first to fall victim to the infected military man. Instead of it hindering her performance, it actually makes her more in demand and she begins to turn some of the other strippers, who take clients back into the VIP room to eat them and turn them into zombies as well.

Who knows if first time director Jay Lee went into his movie with more than a title and a vision but the idea that undead naked women with skin peeling off being better strippers than the normal ones quickly gets tiring, and as hard as the movie tries, very little of it is actually funnyIt’s all dumb, low-brow stereotypes, and while one might ask, “What do you expect with a title like ‘Zombie Strippers’?” Obviously, something better than this. Lee tries way too hard to be clever but he’s working with a cast who couldn’t act their way out of a paper bag if it was soaked in water and slits were cut to give them a head start. Most of the military personnel are played by bad central casting actors, including a number of women who might have been more convincing strippers.

Jenna Jameson’s “serious acting” debut essentially has her returning to her stripper roots and though she has a few good moments, like when she’s turned into a human billiard ball launcher, there’s nothing in this movie that makes one think she’s ready to become the next Charlize Theron even if Jenna’s hotter and more willing to get naked. Then again, compared to doing porn, a bad D-grade movie like this might be the only step up for Ms. Jameson. Would anyone be surprised to learn that Robert Englund is embarrassing as Ian Essko, the owner of the strip club? Granted, “embarrassing” is notch above most of his non-Freddy roles, and there are much worse actors like Carmit Levité’s Madame Blavataski and Joey Medina as the club’s janitor Paco, who sling offensive racial jokes with bad accents that aren’t nearly as funny as they seem to think.

The rest of the strippers are quite talented at their job with impressive dance moves and smokin’ hot bods, and granted, it’s probably cheaper to see this movie than going to a strip club when you consider cover, drinks, tips, etc. but you have to put up with a lot of really, really stupid bullsh*t in between the stripping. Oh, and the fact that half of them look like zombies makes it a lot less hot than the club’s drunken clientele seems to make it sound.

There are more than enough gruesome and innovative deaths and kills that one can commend the film’s FX department, but at times, the gore looks cheesy and fake, using foam rubber and CG that looks only slightly better than the Australian schlocker “Undead.” Essentially, the movie is one bad cliché after another expecting that anyone who’d shell out money for a movie called “Zombie Strippers” would be easy please and entertain with so many dumb low-brow jokes. There are much better examples of how talented directors can make fun B-movie fare, and where movies like Robert Rodriguez’s “Planet Terror” and Jon Gulager’s “Feast” can entertain with their attempts at mocking horror movie stereotypes, Lee’s debut tries way too hard, so much so that the bad dialogue and acting seems far from deliberate.

Yeah, one can argue that this is meant to be bad and funny, but really, it’s more the former than the latter, and as soon as one gets sick of ogling hot dancing naked women (which when watching on video will probably be much quicker than the film’s 90 minutes) then there’s really not much else to see here that we haven’t already seen in other bad (but better) zombie movies.

The Bottom Line:

If you like zombies and you like strippers, than this movie has them both… and that’s about the only good thing that can be said about this awful waste of time.