Have you ever done something you knew you weren't probably going to like--be it going on a date with someone who wasn't your type, or consuming drinks with names like Elephant Enema--but did it anyway? What you feel afterward isn't necessarily regret, but almost a vague sense of shame that goes beyond "I told you so." The 2006 shot-on-video release ELECTRIC ZOMBIES is like that, a movie so universally reviled by those who've seen it that I knew I had to see it, even though it's as much fun as eating a bucket of bad clams.
In a premise that Stephen King would find awfully familiar, ordinary citizens are becoming brain-washed zombies due when they answer their cell phones. I hate to do this, but for further plot information allow me to quote in full the Plot Summary from the film's IMDB page:
"Cult horror director John Specht's low-budget feature, "Electric Zombies," neatly cobbles together two disparate genres: the conspiracy thriller and the horror/slasher movie. It also comments sardonically on the post-9/11 fear of the U.S. government-gone-haywire, as it recounts the tale of a misguided federal project to brainwash "enemies of the state" via cell-phone signals. The signals inadvertently grow in power and become redirected to the U.S., turning unsuspecting civilians into super-obedient zombies whenever their cell phones are answered. They receive self-destructive orders, which they follow will-lessly -- orders running the gamut from self-mutilation to suicide to homicide to riot. Those who manage to escape from falling prey to the menace must find a way to stop the threat -- before the U.S. erupts into unchecked anarchy."
The above synopsis is credited to one Jonas Moses, who appears as an actor in the film. Frankly, I would've still known it was a ringer's review by two things: one, it isn't the least bit negative, and two, Moses knew exactly what the movie was about.
There is absolutely no way one can discern what happens in ELECTRIC ZOMBIES just by watching it. It's a terminally muddled "thriller," compensating in confusion what it lacks in thrills. Director John Specht lets us know right off the bat we'll never know what's going on, drowning the dialogue under the score and sound effects and fading in and out without rhyme or reason every thirty seconds. We've got spies, politicians, cops, pimps and ho's, but what we don't have is a clue.
ELECTRIC ZOMBIES fails in every conceivable artistic capacity, too cheap, boring, and stupid to even elicit a passionate response. Watching it won't make you laugh or piss you off; you'll just sit there with a vague feeling of sympathy, praying for the end to come (the movie's or yours, whichever happens to arrive first).
If you're anything like me you normally rush out and track down a movie that gets a virulent review like this one, and because I know the mentality I won't bother to stop you. Instead I'll wait until the following morning, give you a comforting pat on the shoulder, and say, "I told you so."