COCKNEYS VS ZOMBIES
Cockneys vs Zombies is another of these wacky collusions although when it gets down to it, the title is the most outré aspect of the film and for the most part it is a surprisingly straightforward venture through the modern 00s zombie comedy. It is clearly trying to be another Shaun of the Dead, which becomes obvious from its British take on things, its two comically aimless best friend heroes and the array of likeably inept eccentrics that it manages to pack into the supporting cast. With this assemblage, Cockneys vs Zombies pads out its time engagingly, especially amusing being the scenes of a bank robbery that goes comically wrong at every opportunity and the subsequent hostage situation.
The film has a good deal of fun playing off the cliches associated with Cockneys the people of Londons East End who speak with their own accent and have a dialect made up of a peculiar rhyming slang. (If youre not familiar, think of the way the gangsters that inhabit the typical Guy Ritchie film speak). This has some rather hilarious results with Tony Selby having fun as a former gangster stuck in a retirement home and Dudley Sutton being particularly amusing as a Cockney who keeps getting his rhyming slang wrong. There is an hilarious monologue where Sutton explains the chain of connections that allows Trafalgar to become zombie according to rhyming slang. (The idea of Guy Ritchie-type Cockeny gangsters up against zombies also played out in Gangsters, Guns and Zombies (2012) the same year as this).
The film gets off some amusing gags like a parody of the shuffling zombies where Richard Briers on a walking frame managing to outrun a horde of zombies trying to catch him, or the images of a group of pensioners on walking frames and in wheelchairs wielding heavy-duty artillery against the zombie hordes. As a zombie film, Cockneys vs Zombies remains engagingly likeable and constantly funny without necessarily ever reinventing the genre. Amiable fun.
Among the cast, the show is owned by Michelle Ryan, the former Bionic Woman (2007), who turns in a wonderfully sexily assured and kickass turn. As Mental Mickey, Ashley Thomas lets all stops go and gives a demented performance that steals much of the show. Alan Ford also dominates all of the scenes he appears in as though determined to bludgeon his way there with his accent.
German director Matthias Hoene first appeared with the online-released horror serial Beyond the Rave (2008), which marked the revival of Hammer Films. He subsequently went on to make the Luc Besson written/produced The Warriors Gate (2016) in which a videogame nerd is transported back to Ancient China.