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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Day 80: Masters of Horror: Homecoming

Masters of Horror: Homecoming
Zombie eat brains, but zombie cannot swallow this tax hike

I'll be the first to admit that I don't read enough books. Most of the books I do read are usually sports-related, biographies and some H.P. Lovecraft material. I can't help it, I like what I like and I love television. To my surprise, Masters of Horror actually had made a movie out of one of the stories I have read, Homecoming. Ms. Meghan, who reviewed the movie “Suck” had purchased for me a zombie short story anthology entitled “The Living Dead” which featured the story Homecoming is based off of, “Death & Suffrage” by Dale Bailey. I really enjoyed the story, but would I enjoy seeing it come to life?

Told mostly in flashback, Homecoming focuses on the story of politico and speechwriter David Murch (Joe Tenney, The Stepfather, Free Willy 2). During a television appearance with the Ann Coulter-like Jane Cleaver (Thea Gill, Queer As Folk), David speaks with the mother of a deceased Iraq War veteran. In a strange moment where he recalls the memory of his dead veteran brother, David says that he wished her son could come back to tell us how important the war is to the country. After the show, David and Jane consummate their new relationship while David talks on the phone with the President's right-han man, the Karl Rove-eque Kurt Rand (Robert Picardo, The Howling, Gremlins 2). Rand wants to use David's line in an effort to boost his chances for reelection. David eventually gets his wish because soldiers killed in Iraq begin to rise out of their coffins and graves. It is revealed that the soldiers are unhappy with the war and plan to vote for anyone who will stop it. David, Jane, and Rand crank up the electoral machine and do everything in their power to save the election. Will they be able to help their President get reelected or will the zombies have their say?

They're not voting for Ron Paul, I can tell you that

I really enjoyed the short story “Death & Suffrage.” I studied politics in school and have an interest in current events, so I especially liked all the references to George W. Bush, Karl Rover and all the rest of the conservative mouthpieces that drummed up support for the war in Iraq and convinced the country that Bush deserved a second term. Homecoming does deviate a bit from the original story and not necessarily in a good way, particularly the ending. Thankfully, the movie does keep the essence of the short story, with the focus staying on the political and social commentary. It's certainly an important movie in terms of it's political significance.

Both Joe Tenney and Thea Gill do well in their roles as skeevy neo-cons trying to spin their way to a political victory. Robert Picardo is especially great as a skinnier Karl Rove. Director Joe Dante (The Howling, Gremlins) does a fine job with some good shots that will last in your memory. The makeup used on the zombies look good in the traditional zombie sense. The horror aspect in the movie, though, is minimal, though, so if you're looking for brain chomping and skin eating, you're going to be very disappointed. Homecoming is not so much a horror movie, as it is a political movie. There is some dark humor to keep morbid movie watchers entertained, but if you're not into politics, you may miss some of the jokes.

Ann Coulter prefers shooting people with handguns

Homecoming is a political movie that uses zombies to get it's point across, not a horror movie. If you aren't interested in politics, you may find yourself bored and uninspired. The acting is good and the references to real-life figures are with a few chuckles. Do yourself a favor and read “Death & Suffrage.” If you like it, check out Homecoming.


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