Zombie Month: City of Rott by Jamie

Zombies. They’re reanimated and now they’re animated too in ‘City of Rott’! Ugh… I’m sorry. Really sorry. That was inexcusable. Let’s just forget that happened.

So yes, ‘City of Rott’ is a 2006 animated film that takes place during the Zombie Apocalypse. The cause of this particular Zombie uprising is a parasitic worm called the Rot Worm. It has infected the Earth’s water supply and, when ingested or getting into a human body in anyway, the Worms begin to feast on the hosts flesh and heading for the brain, pretty much turning them into your traditional Romero style Zombies.

Stuck in the middle of this Undead Holocaust is Fred, an elderly man with a walker which he wields as a rather effective weapon. His quest is to find a new pair of slippers because what’s the point of surviving if your feet are uncomfortable? It’s also clear that Fred has gone quite mad as he talks to his walker and believes it speaks to him as well as experiencing infrequent hallucinations.

On Fred’s journey, he meets up with a number of other survivors including a nurse, hoping to find a cure for her Zombie bite, a survivalist named Jon who decides to help the old man and a mysterious elderly gentleman who carries around a bottle of prune juice. He also visits and passes a number of interesting locations such as the mall (Where you find a mall, you find Zombies) and Tex’s Chainsaws.

So yeah, the film is full of little references to earlier Zombie films and horror films in general, often in the back ground. One of my favourites was probably a sign that read ‘At Night, Dawn Day will perform “This Land”. Tickets $80’. It’s little touches like this that make the film enjoyable for the seasoned Zombie fan.

Now, I’ve left the plot synopsis there because there are some pretty big spoilers that going any further into the plot would give away. Does that mean that I’m recommending this film? Not entirely. I think it’s certainly a fairly enjoyable film but I also think that this is one that’ll be very subjective. There are long, long stretches of the film that suffer from repetitive action, basically scene after scene of the main character performing the same moves with his walker in order to wipe out Zombies. It’s entertaining the first few times but it get’s old fast.

And if you thought that Romero was overly preachy with ‘Diary of the Dead’ then you might just hate this film. Ok, you’ll think to yourself, the government is bad for taking taxes, human beings are just bad in general and in following trends aren‘t we basically already Zombies? Yes, isn’t bad that farmers refer to living animals as products? Yawn. Just get on with it please because I neither agree nor disagree with your philosophy. In fact, I think you basically just taken it too damn far and you try to cram too much into this one hour and sixteen minute long movie. Hell, there’s even a song in the film where the lyrics are basically something like ‘Six billion people… draining the Earth…’ Jesus fucking Christ, gimme a break already. Yes, Zombie movies have always been an avenue for social commentary when done right. You just need to be a tad more subtle and selective.

The animation style is adequate for what it is, kind of like an old school episode of South Park. The film also only has one voice actor, Frank Sudol, who also did pretty much everything else for film too and I suppose he deserves some respect for that. Unfortunately when it comes to the voices, most of the characters sound like they’re doing bad Jimmy Stewart impressions and that’s a little off putting.

Finally, there’s that one hour and sixteen minute running time. I honestly think it’s too long for a movie of this nature. Trim out some of the repetitive action and make it an hour or less. Just tighten the whole thing up because as it is, it’s a little all over the place, especially when the main portion of the film is spent following one character around.

That’s not to say that it’s a bad film, it’s just not particularly great either. It does have an interesting story, it’s just marred by all the ancillary crap that seems to have been thrown in to somehow justify it’s running time. Overall, I’ll give it three pints out of five. Laterz.

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