Volume 3, Number 5 - October 30, 2012

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Kristopher Stoltz

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Shocked Jock: Pontypool uses non-traditional methods to deliver it's scares, the zombie attacks never take place on-screen. COURTESY OF MAPLE PICTURES

This Isn’t Your Typical Zombie Flick

By Kristopher Stoltz

When you hear the phrase “a psychological zombie thriller,” you know it makes no  sense.

Zombie films are usually watched and made for the grotesque gore and junk-food action.

Well, there’s a hidden  small jewel in the zombie genre, and it’s called Pontypool. The entire movie is set at a radio station broadcasting from a small Canadian town in Ontario.

Grant Mazzy, a one-time shock-jock and now a radio announcer, station manager Sydney Briar, and technical assistant L.A. Drummond try to keep their heads cool as a zombie attack happens in their town of Pontypool.

The movie is like a combination of The Thing and the War of The Worlds radio broadcast from 1938.

Each performance of the characters alone in a snowy winter morning is pretty damn good. Grant Mazzy, played by Stephen McHattie, is fun to hear and ranges from playful to downright scary.

In the film, you don’t actually see any of the actual zombie attacks, just hear it through radios and cellphones. It’s almost like getting two shows at the same time.

But that’s not the best part of this movie. No, what makes this movie so fascinating is the virus itself. It’s nowhere near campy or traditional but it does get a little outlandish at times. At the risk of giving away too much: it’s not a traditional virus, so keep an open mind. That being said, if you’re looking for a smart new twist on zombie movies, check this one out on Netflix instant.

Hell, watch it a second time but turn the video off.

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