This slick Canadian zombie film looks great for a low-budget direct-to-DVD offering. With the same shaky cam style that bolstered the tension in the previous year's "Dawn of the Dead" remake and good acting from the Canadian cast, Bessai's environmentally friendly ghoul flick is no schlock fest.
But that's precisely the film's problem. It takes itself way too seriously.
You have an idea where the film is heading when it opens with a conflict between environmentalists chaining themselves to trees and loggers that want to cut them down. You feel like you're watching a fairly well made movie of the week about hte environment, which makes sense considering that Bessai got his start -- and continues to direct -- serious dramas. This is in spite of the fact that his one and only zombie movie is rife with cliches and some pretty stupid ideas.
Naturally, the environmentalists and loggers once pitted against one another must join forces in the face of a zombie outbreak in the woods. The cause of the outbreak is blood-covered sap (!) which turn loggers green and into cannibal killers. The zombies in this are kind of a cross between the lumbering ones in Romero's films and the running ones in Zack Snyder's "Dawn of the Dead" redo. They lumber -- but they lumber fast.
The film goes for politics, with characters arguing over how capitalist the loggers are. When we learn some genetic engineering was involved in the creation of the red sap, the scientist behind it argues that he was trying to reduce clearcutting. In another scene, protesters chained to a tree become easy targets for the undead loggers. Things climax with a "Land of the Dead"-style finish, with some loggers killing off zombies for sport in a compound they've created.
It's all done with great style and sense of drama from director Bessai, but the proceedings are so serious it's hard to qualify this zombie film as fun in any way shape or form. It also doesn't have that much gore for a zombie movie.
Great photography, acting, and sense of style, but no real heart, "Severed" is a watchable zombie film but one you probably won't remember. It's easy to see why it went straight to DVD.
And Where oh where IS the Military?But the answer is sipmle guys. the moment you get a Competent Troop running around In Armor, the Story becomes all about Fuel. Zombiee have a hard time with Cars, get a Hummer or Two and it's a boring ( if Not alot more Real) Show.Why didn't they strip the dead outside of the CDC after the Blast. I can almost see Not abandoning the POV, Almost, but grab a Humvee at least.