December 2, 2009

Review: Dead Air (2009)

"Bill Moseley fans, rejoice; zombie movie fans, not so much..."

Cast Members of Note- Bill Moseley, David Moscow, and Patricia Tallman. Directed by... Corbin Bernsen?

Much like Pontypool, Dead Air is the story of a hip, popular, sassy DJ and his crew whom are forced to listen as Zombie Apocalypse is unleashed on the world (just the all-deserving U.S. really) all whilst trapped in their studio. Like I said, much like Pontypool

Not Grant Mazzy.
Also much like Pontypool, the Zombie Apocalypse doesn't really involve zombies at all, since no one rises from the grave craving human flesh. Instead, the "Zombies" are created by multiple terrorist attacks across the country, using some sort of biological agent which makes people turn into angry "Zombies" ala 28 Days Later

"OMG, Grant Mazzy doesn't work here, okay!?!"
So, trapped and helpless to do anything about it, the radio crew listens to their city being torn apart via call-ins, gets held hostage by Al Quaeda, and is lectured about how the U.S. needs to learn a lesson because were all capitalist dogs. Yep. More zombie, less preachy please. 

Grant Mazzy Logan takes on a terrorist.
I love Bill Moseley. He's just always so good and so fun to watch, and he had an uncanny ability to rise above a lot of the material he's given, and sometimes even make the sub-par even better just through his performance. And I was surprised to see that Corbin Bernsen directed the movie. Who knew the L.A. Law guy had it in him? Aside from the Bill Moseley love, the movie was fun for what it was, although it's one I'm not sure I'd sit through again. Had they alluded to the terrorist angle rather than spent a large amount of screen time showing it to us, I may have been more enthralled by the whole thing. It felt a bit too preachy to me (though that may just be the way I took it), and it ultimately detracted from what should have been; a good old-fashioned "trapped by zombies" flick. Pontypool did it better.

I bet he'd be a cool guy to have a few beers with.
Wasn't this movie called Pontypool earlier this year? Obvious comparison is obvious, but you know I'm right.

When are we going to get a good Zzombie movie that actually involves people rising from the grave and craving human flesh? I mean the ones we have been getting of late are good, but in 28 Days Later it was animal testing, in Zombieland it was mad cow disease, in Pontypool it was the English language, and in Dead Air we get a terrorist attack of the chemical variety... all are good flicks, but just not true zombie movies. Then again, I'd take any of those over Diary of the Dead any day... 

Zombies eat, they don't get angry and fight!
There's enough blood and violence here I suppose, but I was just underwhelmed by it all. I want gut munching. I want throat ripping. I want Romero-Fulci levels of gore with my zombie movies!

There actually was a little bit of skin on display here, albeit the skin of a zombie, but it was there.
Zombie Apocalypse can happen anytime Terrorists want it to, and it doesn't have to involve dead people after all. Who knew? Also, Bill Moseley rocks. We all knew.

Yes, Bill, you rock.
This was a decent (if not flawed) effort, thanks largely to the performance and charisma of Bill Moseley. As I said above, I'm getting tired of zombie movies that don't actually have any zombies in them, but the concept of these offshoots is at least largely the same and can be enjoyable in their own right. I say give it a rent, then decide if you want to buy it or not.


Dead Air is available now on DVD.

Hey, I remember that chick!


  1. It's that chick from Babylon5!

  2. man...this movie just didn't do it for me. When the mess of zombies showed up at the end was pretty cool.

    But one fun part of zombie movies for me is the inventive ways said zombies are killed/ dispatched.

    This thing had too much story/ dialogue for me, sadly that was the premise of the whole movie, so can't do much.