I recently watched ‘The Rezort,’ a 2015 film directed by Steve Barker and written by Paul Gerstenberger.
Let’s start off with my rating: a solid 6.5 out of 10 stars!
I truly enjoyed the majority of this film. It was a sort of B-list movie without a major budget, but it didn’t look cheaply made and the production was pretty decent. Also some of the film’s actors were recognizable from other roles played in British media, so in general the acting was good. It wasn’t ever cheesy or awkward in regards to the actors’ delivery of lines.
If you haven’t heard about the movie yet then here’s a brief synopsis:
It starts with numerous clips from news broadcasts telling you that a zombie infection outbreak had happened seven years ago and now humanity was finally feeling like they are back on their feet since the ‘war.’ Since the humans had won the war against the zombies, they rounded up whatever Zs were still around and dumped them on an island off the coast of Spain.
On that island an exclusive luxury resort or Rezort was built that allows guests to live out their therapeutic revenge on the undead for the losses they suffered during the epidemic. The storyline follows a woman who is dealing with the loss of her father and goes with her boyfriend to the island to find a way to cope. They get to the main island and see that it is also full of refugees, which hasn’t been broadly talked about on the news. The main island is only a boat ride away from the Z-infested island that houses the luxury hotel and million-dollar security procedures to keep the Zs at a safe distance in order to allow the guests minimal danger when going on their zombie hunting trips or a Z-Safaris.
The team of guests (the woman, her boyfriend and four others plus their guide) go out on their Zafari, but what they don’t know is that back at the main control room of the Rezort the system is failing which means all the security precautions are void. With the gates open and the electronic barbed wire keeping the Zs at a safe distance the hotel is quickly overrun.
For the remained of the film we stay with that Zafari team as they try to make it to the docks to get on a boat for a safe escape before the island is culled (blown up by explosives to ensure that the zombies don’t spread past the island).
Picture Jurassic Park but with zombies that the guests get to hunt instead of marveling at dinosaurs. Sometimes these films make me chuckle because honestly, who goes on vacation to a hotel to be surrounded by flesh eating dead people and then is shocked when they come in contact with a zombie and someone is eaten. What a perfect example of how humans interact with strong forces of nature and then get surprised and angry when nature wins. HINT: Nature will always win. So please stop trying with dangerous things like swimming with sharks, playing with tigers, chasing tornadoes or in this case harassing zombies.
One thing I usually like to discuss the most is the type of zombie in the film. It always intrigues me to see if they are fast, slow, smart or just aimlessly shuffling around and what that means to the rest of the plot. However, in this film the zombies are FAST, the humans can barely outrun them (if they manage to at all). Their speed could be a result of how recently they became undead or where they came from (which is a major plot point which makes the story very topical and interesting).
I also noticed that one zombie in particular showed signs of intelligence and remembered a hotel employee that taunted her while she was restrained. Therefore, the zombies in this film were faster and more intelligent than your average mindless shuffler constantly bumping its head into a wall.
While my friend who watched the film with me commented that it was just a bit too similar to Jurassic Park and maybe felt a bit like a rip off. For me, it didn’t matter. I found this concept much more intriguing than a dinosaur park. The idea that humans who fought in a war against their undead friends and family would then spend a large sum of money to travel to an island infested with cannibals is ludicrous yet at the same time plausible.
It posed the question: Yes, humans killed zombies when they had to during the war to survive, but why would they now pay money to and willingly shoot them from a distance as if it’s a sport?
These zombies were people once too. While it’s true the zombies would eat you if they could, they pose no danger to human life anymore as they are contained on the island. Why go out of your way to kill them? It isn’t for survival anymore and while the idea of revenge could be the reason, I don’t think it’s a good enough one. You would want to get revenge on the specific zombie that ate your parent, not a random different Z. I don’t think that would be a satisfying reason enough to go on a Zafari and it makes viewers question human decency.
Overall, I really enjoyed this film. I’d have to say it’s sitting pretty high up on my list of favorite zombie films. The concept is just spectacular (I know some think it’s a rip off of Jurassic Park, but I actually think the idea is better with zombies). The acting was good and the zombies looked scary, therefore, the production value is truly good enough to compete with some of the blockbuster Z films.
It was a fast-paced action packed film that kept my heart racing up until the last minute. A great performance by the actors and the characters were well-rounded and believable in their actions/reactions.
I will definitely be rewatching this film and hopefully will pick up on little things that I didn’t notice the first time around.
I recommend this film to zombie fans who like fast-paced action and films where everyone gets bitten (or do they?)….