Blu-ray/DVD, Disney, Live Action, Live Action, Reviews

[DVD REVIEW] ‘Zombies’

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In recent years, Disney Channel has made a name for itself in providing teen-friendly musicals with positive messages and energetic songs. The latest entry, Zombies, is one of the better entries with a sweet message, charismatic performances and some catchy songs. It is coming out on DVD April 24th and it is worth a purchase, especially if you have teens in your life.

The set-up for Zombies is simple. In a town called Seabrook, a zombie outbreak was unleashed much to the horror of the citizens. To cope, the town built a wall to keep the zombies out. Fortunately, they also developed a cure for the zombies’ brain-eating ways which allowed them to behave like anybody else.  Like the villain kids in Descendants, the decision is made to welcome the zombies into the human schools, and this is met with persecution and disdain at first. Animation fans should enjoy the introduction to Zombies, which shows the creative flair the film has:

The lead zombie, Zed, is played by Milo Manheim, and his dream is to play on the school football team. Meanwhile, human girl Addison, played by Meg Donnelly, dreams of making the cheer squad at school. The head of the cheer team, Bucky, played by Trevor Tordjman, hates the zombies and is the main antagonist in the story. There is also a zombie named Eliza, played by Kylee Russell, that becomes friends with Zed and has a bit of a rebellious streak in her.

There’s nothing all that groundbreaking in Zombies and it could easily be accused of being maudlin and predictable; however, it clearly has its heart in the right place with a positive message that elevates it above typical Disney Channel fare. The songs are also a lot of fun and well choreographed by Christopher Scott and director Jeffrey Hornaday. It is particularly impressive how they use glow in the dark effects in the song ‘BAMM’:

Donnelly and Manheim are charming in the leads and overall it’s a very sweet, entertaining film the whole family can enjoy watching together.

Bonus Features ✮✮1/2

The DVD special features are average but entertaining enough for fans of the film to watch.

  • Bloopers – A classic blooper reel that gives some behind the scenes action
  • Deleted Scenes – 2 cut scenes both involving the cheer squad
  • Audition Footage – Manheim and Donnelly’s audition footage to be in the movie
  • Zombies Survival Guide to High School – A little 2 minute short giving 6 tips for surviving high school
  • Music Videos – 2 videos of the ‘BAMM’ song one with lyrics and one a traditional music video
  • Dance Tutorial – An instructional video teaching the dance in ‘BAMM’ by choreographer Christopher Scott
  • Original Trailers– Both of the Zombies trailers

Final Thoughts

If you are a fan of the recent Disney Channel musicals then you will definitely love Zombies. It is one of the better entries of late with a sweet message, likable cast and energetic musical numbers. The DVD is worth picking up where ever DVDs are sold

Movie Score ✮✮✮✮

AMAZON DVD here

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About Rachel Wagner

Rachel is a rottentomatoes approved film critic and podcaster. She loves all things animation and does a monthly podcast on classic Disney films and on obscure animation at Rachel's Reviews. She also is the founder and lead host of The Hallmarkies Podcast. She grew up with mainstream classics like The Little Mermaid and The Simpsons but also loves indie and anime fare like Song of the Sea and Your Name. Most important to her is discussing all kinds of film and TV shows with her friends and all of you. Follow Rachel on twitter at @rachel_reviews and on her blog rachelsreviews.net