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Crap But Hilarious Movies – Hard Rock Zombies (1984)

The Dark Knight, Wall-E, Iron Man… They’re all a bit, you know, – good. So we’ve decided to also explore the movies from back in the day that don’t fall into this category.

This week – Hard Rock Zombies

There are some movie genre hybrids that just make sense. Romantic comedy, action thriller, horror fantasy, and many others. I suppose we could praise the filmmakers of Hard Rock Zombies for forging new territory in the zombie/80s arena rock/nazi genre. Sure enough, their idea is original. A group of rockers heads to a small conservative town to play a show, they spend the night at an old man’s (who happens to be Hitler in hiding) mansion, get killed, then come back as zombies and infect the local populace. There’s also a romantice subplot between the lead singer and this girl who looks twelve, but I’ll get to that later. Right now, I just want to assure you that you will never see anything remotely like this movie. I take comfort in that.

In an odd way, the biggest flaw of the movie is its length. In most B movies, they should run about an hour and half, not much longer because there is a biological limit to how much filth a body can withstand. Hard Rock Zombies clocks in at over two hours (felt close to three, actually). This is worsened by many scenes which run on much too long, almost as if they were just adding minutes for the sake of a long run time. The most classic example of this is a scene early on where the band spontaneously breaks into song on the street of the town, gathering the local townsfolk to pay attention. A music video ensues which recycles essentially the same five shots and the song itself is just barely shorter than Stairway to Heaven.

The primary heroine of the movie leaves much to be desired, as well. I assume she’s supposed to be in her late teens, but unfortunately by the way she’s dressed and her physical appearance, she looks closer to twelve than eighteen. This obviously complicates her love affair with the lead singer of the band (who later becomes a zombie) by adding an undercurrent of pedophilia to the already layered storytelling.

I can only recommend the movie to someone who really wonders what the eighties were like. The movie is accurate in its portrayal of that time period. Everyone is stupid. The Nazis are stupid, the rockers are stupid, everything is a perfect representation of that abysmal decade in history. The opening is also quite effective. Immediately we as viewers are drawn in by female nudity as a woman takes a dip with two (albeit, also nude) male companions. She quickly kills them by either drowning them or viciously lacerating them with some part of her body. If you’re confused reading this, try watching it.

In closing, what could have been a ridiculously good time is unfortunately drowned out by scenes (and the entire movie) dragging on far too long, and a plot that just stacks way too much in.

Our Rating
Filmmaking : D-
Hilarity : B

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