Juan of the Dead [Juan de los Muertos] (2011)
Starring Alexis Díaz de Villegas, Jorge Molina, Andrea Duro, Andros Perugorría, Jazz Vilá, Eliecer Ramírez, Antonio Dechent
Directed by Alejandro Brugués
Expectations: Moderate. I love the gimmick title, so I hope it has the horror (and/or comedy) to back it up.
On the general scale:
On the B-movie scale:
I’ve tried to bring a range of films to this year’s Horrific October, so when I found out about this one, I did what I could to acquire it in time. Juan of the Dead, beyond its gimmicky title, is Cuba’s first horror film, and while it’s not anything revolutionary, it is a lot of fun. I have a lot of problems with it, but I enjoyed the film and honestly, in a zombie movie, that’s about all you need.
Juan of the Dead is something of an homage movie to the zombie genre, taking cues from a host of films and Tarantino-ing them into one film. Did you enjoy the part in Dead Alive when the priest says, “I kick ass for the Lord”? Well, then prepare to hear one of the survivors say exactly that in a dank parking garage. Similarly, other scenes reference Dawn of the Dead, Shaun of the Dead, 28 Days Later, [REC], etc. If you’re OK with this, and you just want to see the zombie apocalypse as scored by salsa music, then ignore everything else and just watch the movie. You might be disappointed, but I’m pretty sure you’ll be entertained.